Would that all the people of the Lord were prophets! Would that the Lord might bestow his Spirit on them all!

Dear Parishioners & Visitors,

Would that all the people of the Lord were prophets! Would that the Lord might bestow his Spirit on them all!

Moses was not that wrong when he  wished  that  all  the  people  of  the Lord might be recipients of the Lord's Spirit. His wish was a prophetic wish unknowingly looking into a distant future, the days of the arrival of the Messiah.

After Jesus' ascension into heaven,  a new age was opened for those who believe in him. Pentecost marks the moment in which the flood gates of the life in the Spirit were opened for all those who believed  and were baptized. The early Christian community was well aware of the many gifts of the Spirit dwelling in the hearts of the faithful. Because of it, history was changed and a new age was opened for those who allowed the Spirit of God to dwell in their hearts.

Two thousand years later, how do we understand and live this happening? Has the life in the Spirit come to an end? Throughout the years of my ministry, I have found people who are scared of the possibility of the life in the Spirit. They would prefer a quiet and established religious reality, without surprises - all under control!

Sadly, those who sponsor such a way of thinking are denying the possibility of the greatest gift. Jesus himself had said to Nicodemus: You must be born from above. The wind blows wherever it pleases; you hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from and where it is going. This is how it is with all who are born of the Spirit. The Spirit of God, the soul of the Church, comes and goes according to his own plan and design, pushing the believer in the direction which only he in his divine wisdom has foreseen. The Spirit of God is not, and will never be controlled by human plans and designs. Like the wind, the Spirit blows wherever it pleases. Pentecost was only the beginning of the plan of the Spirit.

However, Pentecost has not finished; and the Spirit of God cannot be domesticated. If you spend some time studying the history of the Church, you will encounter many failed attempts to rein in the impetus of the Spirit. We always pretend to be in control, and we forget that we are fighting against a reality which is stronger than all of us. In today's Gospel reading we heard how the disciples wanted to stop others who were driving out demons in the name of Jesus because they were not part of their group of followers. Jesus stops them, daring them to expand their understanding of the broadness of the power of the Spirit. Whoever is not against us is for us.

How aware are we of the presence of the Spirit in our lives? How open are we to the working of the Spirit in our lives? Are we afraid of where the Spirit might lead us? Are we afraid of where the Spirit might lead the whole Church? Let us break away from the mentality of fear and let us arrive at a mentality of trust -trust in the Spirit who is the soul of the Church.

-fr. Alberto Rodriguez, O.P.