The Birthday of the Church

Tomorrow in Liturgy we will celebrate The Great Fest of Pentecost or the birthday of the Christian Church. We have been given the gift of the Holy Spirit through the Son from the Father.

“Abba Lot went to see Abba Joseph and said to him, ‘Abba as far as I can I say my little office, I fast a little, I pray and meditate, I live in peace and as far as I can, I purify my thoughts. What else can I do?’ then the old man stood up and stretched his hands towards heaven. His fingers became like ten lamps of fire and he said to him, ‘If you will, you can become all flame.’

What does this Holy Spirit look like? We are told in the Acts of the Apostles that it appeared as tongues of fire. Just imagine that for a moment. But our interest must not linger of the external for too long. It would be easy for us to focus on the “gifts of the Holy Spirit” that some have used as a sign of maturity or prof of great faith but when we become motivated by only the eternal we miss the most important aspect of this fire itself.

Abba Joseph spoke so plainly (above) but with much wisdom. We can look like the flame or we can become the flame.  The Holy Spirit wasn’t just given to us to bring comfort but to illumine our hearts to our sin, to consume the passions that linger in us and to cause us to shine as the Son. That is what fire does. Consumes.

My prayer tomorrow is to be consumed by the fire that burns away worldly desires and will set me ablaze.

A prayer of Intercessory for the Church

Remember Your Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church which You have purchased with Your precious blood. Confirm and strengthen it, enlarge and multiply it, keep it in peace, and preserve it unconquerable by the gates of hell forever. Heal the schisms of the churches, quench the ragings of the heathen, speedily undo and root out the growths of heresies an bring them to naught by the power of your Holy Spirit. Amen.

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