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"For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them." Matthew 18:20


The Pentacost Novena

Laura DeMaria

Our friends over at Pray More Novenas are gearing up for the next nine days of prayer, this time in the form of the Pentacost Novena, starting tomorrow, Friday May 6. You can sign up here to join the thousands of faithful bringing their hearts and intentions before the Holy Spirit.

I am especially interested in this one, because the Holy Spirit has played an important part in my life, and particularly my faith formation and return to the Church. At that moment in Confirmation, when the Holy Spirit descended, I was changed. Truthfully, I had signed up for RCIA as a sort of "Let's go ahead and make all this official, shall we?" gesture, not knowing the affect it would have on me. I went from living a more or less completely secular lifestyle, to becoming weekly involved in a variety of ministries (others' or those I've started myself), evangelizing, listening to the Mass readings every morning, going to Confession regularly and daily Mass at least once a week, deepening my knowledge of the Church and scripture, thirsting deeply for the knowledge of Christ, and finding true love and joy in all of this. The Holy Spirit descended, and I'd like to think, never left (and, I pray to God, He never will).

How has the Holy Spirit moved in your life? One of my favorite ways to see the Holy Spirit in action is how we often find the right people in our lives at exactly the right moment, due to no genius of our own. Or perhaps the apartment you needed became available to rent at the right moment; the compassionate words you needed to share with a suffering friend somehow found their way out of your mouth; you took a different way home for no particular reason and avoided an accident. It goes on and on. This is the Holy Spirit. And how nice to think it is the same Spirit that worked through St. Paul and the original apostles as they preached and converted, building the early Church and bringing Christ to the world for the first time. The Holy Spirit has become no weaker or diluted over the ages, which means that if you pray to Him, he will assist you in the same way He did the early Christians, if you allow Him. Take heart in that! 

I think in praying this novena I will ask the Holy Spirit to put me in the right time and place, and to be able to say the right things, to better serve God and others. In a way, that is a prayer to be more accepting of God's will, isn't it?  To be accepting, to be open, to take what God gives you with love.