Chapter 9. Receive the Holy Spirit • 103
The Acts of the Apostles shows how the Holy Spirit transformed the
Apostles from being fearful disciples, huddling behind closed doors, into
courageous witnesses for Christ.
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 differ-
ent tongues, as the Spirit enabled them to proclaim. (Acts 2:1-4)
Beginning with the gift of the Spirit at Pentecost, the disciples became
dynamic missionaries. He filled those disciples with the gift of courage
so that nothing stopped them from proclaiming the love of Christ for
When we learn how to be open to the Holy Spirit, he shares with us
the gift of understanding that contains the power to know Jesus and to
give witness to him. At our Baptism, the Spirit works through the waters
which take away Original Sin and actual sins and give us new life with
the Triune God. At Confirmation, the Holy Spirit is conferred by the
anointing with the Chrism, by which the bishop seals us so that the Holy
Spirit can strengthen us to pursue the mission of Christ to transform the
world. At every Mass, the Holy Spirit changes the bread and wine into
the Body and Blood of Christ by the ministry of the priest.
The Holy Spirit is dynamic, transforming our bodies into temples of
God and our souls into dwelling places for Christ. Sometimes called the
, a term that describes him as advocate and consoler, the Holy
Spirit wants to fill us with inspiration and encouragement.
We may not have to do great things, but we are called to do every-
day duties with great love. The Holy Spirit is essentially Love. Love can
change those we meet and change ourselves in each encounter. Because
of the Holy Spirit our whole being, mind, heart, soul, and body can be
permeated with Love.
“God is Love” and love is his first gift, containing all others.
“God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy