Act Three, Come Holy Spirit

The Nazareth Page - A gospel meditation for your home

May 19, 2024 – Pentecost Sunday - John 20:19-23

Download this simple process to Prepare for Sunday using the Observe, Judge, Act Method.


I find it helpful to think about God as acting in our regard as a three-act play. The play presents the one God who “stars” (so to speak) throughout, but each person in God takes turns in being featured in one act or another. God the Father initiates Creation in Act One. The work of God the Father ... opens the play “in the beginning” although God remains connected with all creation to this day …  and beyond.

The second act unfolds with the arrival of God the Son becoming human, born of the Virgin Mary and raised by her, with the assistance of her husband, Joseph. Jesus is born, raised and lives a public life where he teaches and gives expression to God’s presence and power among us. He gives fully of his life for us and dies on the cross. Yet the presence of God the Son continues in the person of the Risen Christ who eventually ascends into heaven. Thus, the curtain drops on Act Two.

Now we come to todays’ feast, Act Three, which begins in the coming of God, the Holy Spirit, who will dwell with us, enter into us and spiral around us until the end of time. We pray today to God’s Spirit to come to us ever more fully and fill us with the warmth and fire of God’s love. We ask to be moved ever more into that process of our sanctification that has been unfolding since that first Pentecost. And it’s happening right now, especially if we are aware and open to God’s Spirit being with us. To recall St. Augustine’s words, this Spirit of God is closer to us than we are to ourselves. What a deep thought for this day!


What I take from our belief in God as trinitarian is that God is certainly multi-faceted. Recall the prayer we all know that concludes with the following words. “As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be.” This affirmation expresses our belief that God is present with is and is constantly involved in creation, in its wondrous development and in our personal lives, in their beginning and we hope forever.

On Pentecost we reflect on God’s presence with us right now, during this day, in this moment and will continue to be there for us, keeping us alive. We are partners with God in caring for and perfecting creation. God’s presence is not distant or indifferent to us. It is the opposite of that. God is the power that brought us into being, sustains us here on earth and will never leave us alone. So, come Holy Spirit, fill our hearts with the spirit of your ever faithful divine love. And enkindle greater love in us for you and for all that you have created. Including ourselves.    


David M. Thomas, PhD   

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