Pentecost, which takes place each year on the 50th day after Easter, Resurrection Sunday. Pentecost commemorates the gift of the Holy Spirit, first to the apostles and then to all who follow Jesus Christ. Hence, Pentecost is often seen as the “birthday of the Church,” a time when God’s Spirit came upon Jesus’ disciples, to enable them to serve Christ with new vision and mission, taking them all throughout the then-known world – all the way west to Mauritania in West Africa, to India and China in the East.
I love the way Henri Nouwen, the late Catholic priest and author, describes the contemporary importance of Pentecost for us;
“Without Pentecost, the Christ-event – the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus – remains imprisoned in history as something to remember, think about and reflect on. The Spirit of Jesus comes to dwell within us, so that we can become living Christs here and now.”