The Catholic Church celebrates when the Holy Spirit descended on Pentecost fifty days after Jesus had risen from the dead on Easter. Pentecost commemorates the birth of the Church and marks the end of the seven weeks of Easter.

The Greek word pentekoste means “fiftieth day”. 

For nine days, since Jesus’ Ascension into Heaven, the Apostles had been hiding in fear and praying to God. On the tenth day, the Holy Spirit descended on the Virgin Mary, the Apostles, and other followers of Jesus in the upper room.

The Third Person of the Holy Trinity empowered and emboldened them to come out from hiding and spread the Gospel. Over 3000 people were baptized on that first Christian Pentecost, marking the beginning of the Church.

The ligurgical color of red symbolizes the Holy Spirit descending as tongues of fire and the fire that was lit in the hearts of Jesus’ followers.

The Holy Spirit continues to guide and unify the Church while inspiring and encouraging Catholics today.

Pentecost in 2 Minutes:

A Jewish feast takes on a new meaning for Christians:

When the time for Pentecost was fulfilled, they were all in one place together. And suddenly there came from the sky a noise like a strong driving wind, and it filled the entire house in which they were. Then there appeared to them tongues as of fire, which parted and came to rest on each one of them. And they were all filled with the holy Spirit and began to speak in different tongues, as the Spirit enabled them to proclaim.

Acts 2: 1-4

A reversal of the Tower of Babel and the Golden Calf:

The Lord descends as fire in the New and Old Testaments:

The room where the Holy Spirit descended:

On the first day of Pentecost the Holy Spirit came upon the Apostles and upon Mary and filled them with his power. Today we remember that moment and we open ourselves again to the gift of that same Holy Spirit. In that Spirit we are baptized. In that Spirit we are confirmed. In that Spirit we are called to share in the mission of Christ. In that Spirit we shall indeed become the People of Pentecost, the apostles of our time. “Come, O Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful and kindle in them the fire of your love.” Amen.

Pope John Paul II, Homily, 30 May 1982

Celebrating the outpouring of the Holy Spirit: 

The Holy Spirit is ferocious and dangerous:

On the day of Pentecost when the seven weeks of Easter had come to an end, Christ’s Passover is fulfilled in the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, manifested, given, and communicated as a divine person: of his fullness, Christ, the Lord, pours out the Spirit in abundance.

Catechism of the Catholic Church 731

We need the Holy Spirit to guide us and lead us:

You have been given a unique manifestation of the Holy Spirit:

The mysterious center of our being:

The Truth, Goodness, and Beauty of the Catholic Church

A life of prayer and hospitality:

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