Pentecost Eve

Pentecost is the great feast of the Church, but how often do we prepare for it with the kind of purposefulness we associate with Lent? I don’t mean that we should fast (we don’t fast during the Easter season) or do penance, but even now, on Pentecost eve, we could think about prayer and reconciliation and their role in attaining the peace and unity the Holy Spirit bestows on the Church. So, if there is anyone to whom we need to say ‘sorry’, or anyone we need to forgive, today is a perfect day for doing so. If there is any disunity in our own lives or in the lives of our families or communities, this is a day for trying to set things right. Above all, this is a day for praying simply and earnestly that the Holy Spirit will come upon us and renew his gifts within us. Whether he comes as burning fire or cooling breeze is not for us to decide. Our prayer is short and pure, as St Benedict would have it: Veni, Sancte Spiritus — Come, Holy Spirit!