Skip to main content


On Solemnity of Pentecost

5/28/2007 - 6:00 AM PST

Advertisment

"We Relive the Birth of the Church"

VATICAN CITY, MAY 28, 2007 (Zenit) - Here is a translation of the address Benedict XVI gave Sunday to the crowds gathered in St. Peter's Square when he led the praying of the midday Regina Caeli.

* * *

Dear Brothers and Sisters!

Today we celebrate the great feast of Pentecost. And through today's liturgy we relive the birth of the Church as it is narrated by Luke in the book of the Acts of the Apostles (2:1-13). Fifty days after Easter, the Holy Spirit descended upon the community of disciples -- "persevering with one mind in prayer" -- gathered together "with Mary, the mother of Jesus" and with the twelve apostles (cf. Acts 1:14; 2,1).

We can say, therefore, that the Church had its solemn beginning with the descent of the Holy Spirit. In this extraordinary event we find the essential and qualifying marks of the Church: the Church is one, like the community of Pentecost, which was united in prayer and "of one mind": "it had but one heart and one soul" (Acts 4:32).

The Church is holy, not because of its own merits, but because, animated by the Holy Spirit, it keeps its gazed fixed upon Christ to become conformed to him and his love. The Church is catholic because the Gospel is destined for all people and for this reason, already at the beginning, the Holy Spirit gives the Church the ability to speak in different tongues. The Church is apostolic because, built upon the foundation of the apostles, it faithfully conserves their teaching through the uninterrupted chain of apostolic succession.

The Church, moreover, is missionary by its nature, and from the day of Pentecost the Holy Spirit does not cease to move it along the roads of the world to the ends of the earth and to the end of time. This reality, which we can verify in every epoch, is already anticipated in the Book of Acts, in which the passage of the Gospel from the Jews to the pagans, from Jerusalem to Rome, is described.

Rome represents the pagan world and therefore all peoples who are outside the ancient people of God. In fact, the Acts conclude with the arrival of the Gospel in Rome. We can say, then, that Rome is the concrete name of the catholicity and missionary spirit of the Church; it expresses fidelity to the origins, to the Church of all times, to a Church that speaks in all languages and goes out to meet every culture.

Dear brothers and sisters, the first Pentecost happened when Mary Most Holy was present among the disciples in the cenacle in Jerusalem and prayed. Today also we entrust ourselves to her maternal intercession so that the Holy Spirit descend abundantly upon the Church of our time and fill the hearts of all the faithful and enkindle in them -- in us -- the fire of his love.


[After the recitation of the Regina Caeli the Pope greeted all the faithful and pilgrims present in St. Peter's Square. To the English-speaking pilgrims he addressed the following words:]

I warmly greet all the English-speaking pilgrims who have come here today, especially the Families of Nazareth and the members of the military community of Hohenfels, who are making their retreat in Rome. On this Pentecost Sunday the whole Church gives thanks for the gift of the Holy Spirit sent to the Apostles. May the same Spirit pour out his gifts upon all of you, filling your hearts with love and strengthening you to bear witness to the Gospel of Christ. May God bless you all.

© Copyright 2007 -- Libreria Editrice Vaticana

Contact

Catholic Online
http://www.catholic.org  CA, US
Catholic Online - Publisher, 661 869-1000

Email

info@yourcatholicvoice.org

Keywords

Pope, Benedict, Pentecost, Solemnity, Address, Regina, Caeli, Liturgy

Rate This Article

Very Helpful Somewhat Helpful Not Helpful at All

Yes, I am Interested No, I am not Interested

Rate Article

0 Comments

Leave a Comment

Comments submitted must be civil, remain on-topic and not violate any laws including copyright. We reserve the right to delete any comments which are abusive, inappropriate or not constructive to the discussion.

Though we invite robust discussion, we reserve the right to not publish any comment which denigrates the human person, undermines marriage and the family, or advocates for positions which openly oppose the teaching of the Catholic Church.

This is a supervised forum and the Editors of Catholic Online retain the right to direct it.

We also reserve the right to block any commenter for repeated violations. Your email address is required to post, but it will not be published on the site.

We ask that you NOT post your comment more than once. Catholic Online is growing and our ability to review all comments sometimes results in a delay in their publication.

Send me important information from Catholic Online and it's partners. See Sample

Post Comment


Newsletter Sign Up

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Jeremiah 1:17-19
'As for you, prepare yourself for action. Stand up and tell ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 71:1-2, 3-4, 5-6, 15, 17
In you, Yahweh, I take refuge, I shall never be put to shame. ... Read More

Gospel, Mark 6:17-29
Now it was this same Herod who had sent to have John arrested, ... Read More

Saint of the Day

August 29 Saint of the Day

St. Sabina
August 29: St. Sabina's feast day is August 29th. We know St. Sabina only ... Read More