Sermon for Pentecost – May 20, 2018 by Father Alvarez
Father began the sermon by reciting the Hail Mary.
Today is Pentecost Sunday. In the days of the Old Covenant the Feast of Shavuot was celebrated. The Shavuot or Festival of Wheat was a harvest festival and also the commemoration of Moses receiving the Ten Commandments in Sinai. In Exodus, 34:22, this celebration is called the First Fruit of Wheat Harvest. After the destruction of the Temple in 70 A.D. offerings could no longer be brought to the Temple and the festival started to have a different focus. Because everything in the plan of God has a reason, it is impossible not to mention the significant relationship that exists between the celebration I just mentioned and this holy day of Pentecost. The day of joy when people used to thank God for the fruits received from His generosity is also the day upon which the Mystery of God manifests Himself to fill the Apostolic College gathered in prayer with the Spirit of Fruits.
As the Father is the Creator and the Son is the Redeemer, the Holy Ghost is the one who sustains us, since in God we live and move and are, as St. Paul says. St. Iranaeus of Lyon summed it up as follows: “The Father is well pleased and ordered. The Son works and forms. The Spirit nourishes and increases,”… therefore the time of the Holy Ghost is the time when the Church comes out of the shadows of fear and reclaims its’ place before the world.
On that same day Holy Mother Church generated three thousand new children by the power of the Holy Ghost and within a few decades important congregations had been established in all the major cities of the Roman Empire. God therefore will no longer receive material offerings in the destroyed Temple. Now, a perfect Temple, the Church, is presented by God as the only Ark of Salvation to undo the works of the synagogue of Satan. The Church which is eternal and millennial today, manifests herself to humanity making the enactment of the new law official.
To better understand the significance of this it is important to note the reference to the wind which in fact is one of the names of the Holy Ghost. In Hebrew (Father relating in Hebrew first –of the storm and the fire that came from heaven on Pentecost.) They are elements that represent the presence and Theophany, that is, the presence and manifestation of God. What does it mean? It means that what the apostles experienced was the presence of God who wanted to give them something, letting them experience something similar to what Moses experienced at Sinai where the Torah was given. As we can see, the Church has revealed foundations to believe in the Holy Ghost; Christ Himself spoke of the Holy Ghost as a person and as a Divine Person. On the other hand, both Christ and His persecutors held that there was only one God. I could mention here ten places in scripture where the Holy Ghost is spoken of as one of the Persons of the Holy Trinity but this is not a class of theology, it is a short homily.
Now nobody can give testimony but a person, and if God normally can give testimony by the same God in order to confess that Christ is God or affirm that there are three persons in one God, the capacity of a man is not enough; the testimony of an angel is not enough. Even more, the attestation of all the angels would not be enough. The Holy Trinity is a Divine Mystery so only God can reveal it. Christ from the beginning of His preaching began to reveal these with prudence, just as He started to affirm His own Divinity. For example, Christ Himself said, “For David himself saith by the Holy Ghost, the Lord said to My Lord; sit on My right hand until I make Thine enemies Thy footstool”. All the people believed and rightly so that scripture was the word of God but they used to say, “God saith through the mouth of King David”. Christ instead replaced the word God with Holy Ghost, thus preparing for the explicit final revelation that He gave on the day of His Ascension, “Go therefore teach ye all nations, baptizing them In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost”. Therefore all that I mentioned above teaches us that Pentecost led us with solemnity to the contemplation of the mystery of the Most Holy Trinity. Today in these times of false ecumenism it is perhaps more important than ever to maintain that the God revealed by Christ is not a false God of the Pharisees. The Divine Trinity in whom we Catholics believe is not the same as the imposter who is worshipped by the perfidious ones who committed deicide. The Mystery of the Triune God who is speaking in plural says in Genesis 1:26, “Let us make men to our image and likeness” was revealed by Christ and we believe Him above all because by His Resurrection He proved that what He said is truth. Even though our limited understanding cannot understand it, to this day no other man has risen by his own power and authority to prove the contrary. God is triune, the authority of holiness and the Resurrection of Christ proved it. You do not argue against the facts. To believe in the Holy Ghost and the Holy Trinity we need no more reason than the words of Christ who coming back from death’s domain has shed His peaceful light on humanity.
Come, Holy Ghost, Creator blest,
and in our souls take up Thy rest;
come with Thy grace and heavenly aid
to fill the hearts which Thou hast made.
In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Amen.