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Pentecost Sunday, Year B – 2024

How can we speak of the immaterial, yet very personal?
How can we approach the invisible, yet very close to us?
How can we relate to the divine, creative Spirit?

Human words and usual expressions are weak and poor to establish… a relation!
But symbols may come to our help facilitating the comprehension.
They can possibly assist us as we celebrate today’s Feast of Pentecost.
As we remember the coming of the Holy Spirit on human beings like us, we can look at the symbols used to describe God’s Spirit.

The 1st reading describes the appearance of the Spirit in “what seemed to be tongues of fire (Acts 2:1-11).
The fire – warmth, light, purifying – exemplifies God’s action for us, in us.

As he started his work as God’s special messenger, Jesus went to be baptized by John the Baptist.
We are told that:
“He (John) saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting on Jesus” (Matthew 3:16).

The dove – visible to the people present – stands for the invisible but real presence of God’s Spirit.

Already at the very beginning of the Bible, the narrative of the creation tells us:
“God’s spirit hovered over the water” (Genesis 1:2).
The text does not mention precisely the dove, but some spiritual writers have interpreted the scene as such.

The wind is also seen as a manifestation of God’s Spirit.
Before speaking of the tongues of fire, (referred to above) the text of Acts mentions:
“Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven”.

Jesus himself had spoken in this way to Nicodemus who had come to see him.
“The wind blows wherever it pleases.
You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going.
So it is with everyone born of the Spirit” (John 3:8).

A presence surrounding us, inspiring us, guiding us…
Invisible but so very near and gentle…
Always and ever remaining with us, we who are “born of the Spirit”…


Note: Another text is available on a different theme, in French, at:


Source: Images: Aleteia

Feast of Pentecost, Year A – 2023

People think about God… and they talk about God…
Some ask the question whether God exists…
Others wonder about him… Who is he really?…

Professors explain his attributes with expertise,
Scripture scholars search ancient documents to know more about him, as they should…
Theologians teach about his nature and his relation to human beings, of course…
Wise people continue to reflect about what they hear…

It may be appropriate to remind ourselves that…
                      a thought
                     a theme
                     a thesis…

He is not the product of our imagination, he is beyond all we can think of.
He is a PERSON really and truly.

Such a reflection is relevant on this feast of Pentecost.
It is significant because it is precisely in ‘signs’ or ‘symbols’ that we can speak of God’s Spirit.







   Different Bible texts evoke his presence:

  • hovering over the surface of the waters” (Genesis 1:2).
  • descending like a dove and alighting on Jesus” after his baptism in the Jordan (Matthew 3:16).
  • Like “the wind (that) blows where it wishes… So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit, in the words of Jesus to Nicodemus (John 3:8).
  • “When the day of Pentecost came… they saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that came to rest on each of them” (Acts 2:1,3).

Sings, symbols, evocation… leading to the perception of God’s Spirit who alone can reveal himself to us.

A lifetime attuned to this Spirit,
moving under his guidance,
transformed by his presence…

The Spirit enlightening our own spirit,
gently blowing within us his wisdom,
teaching us to speak ‘Abba’ with the unique accent of his children… (Romans 8:15)

This is what this celebration is about.

Another text is available on a different theme, in French at:


Source: Images: (Cesar Coni)   3-Minute Bible Studies (Indonesia Nature)    Living in the Spirit