The meaning of the celebration
+ On this day, we recall the descent of the Holy Spirit on Mary, the Apostles, and other followers of Jesus on the fiftieth day after the Resurrection.
+ Gathered in Jerusalem to celebrate Shavuot—the giving of the Law to Moses on Mount Sinai—these first Christians were filled with the gifts of the Spirit and empowered to proclaim the Risen Lord in Jerusalem and throughout the world.
On June 9, the Church also celebrates the commemoration of Saint Ephrem. A monk and deacon of the church of Syria, he is especially remembered for the hymns and poems he composed to defend the Catholic Faith against heresy. Saint Ephrem died in 373 and was declared a Doctor of the Church in 1920. He is honored as the patron saint of spiritual directors.
“Prayer draws into the soul the Holy Spirit and raises man to Heaven.”—Saint Ephrem of Syria
Holy Spirit, violent wind of God, blow upon us, blow into our hearts and make us breathe forth the tenderness of the Father! Blow upon the Church and impel her to the ends of the earth, so that, brought by you, she may bring nothing other than you. Blow upon our world the soothing warmth of peace and the refreshing cool of hope. Come Holy Spirit, change us within and renew the face of the earth. Amen.
(Pope Francis in his homily for Pentecost 2018)
Saint profiles prepared by Brother Silas Henderson, S.D.S.