Fr. Shawn P. Tunink

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Homily 360 – Peaceful and Powerful – Pentecost

June 4th, 2017, by Fr. Shawn P. Tunink

Spirit of PeaceWe often think of the Holy Spirit being made known by powerful deeds and miracles, like at Pentecost. However, there is another important experience of the Spirit that I consider in today’s homily. Jesus comes to the upper room saying, “Peace be with you” and “Receive the Holy Spirit.” There is an important connection between peace and the Spirit.

From the day of our baptism, we become “temples” of the Holy Spirit. Before baptism, we had only our human spirit; now we become capable of divine life. The presence of the Spirit in us makes us capable of living forever with God. This special indwelling of the Holy Spirit we call “sanctifying grace.” When we have it, we refer to ourselves as being “in a state of grace.” This is where the peace comes in.

Many times in my life, when things get difficult and the weight of the world is bearing down, I am able to find peace in the simple thought, “I am in a state of grace.” If we are in a state of grace, if we have the Holy Spirit, then we can have peace. If we are in a state of grace, nothing else really matters. If we die at this very moment, none of the other cares will matter if we are in a state of grace; we will go to heaven. What a wonderful thought this is to remember!

Now, having this peaceful presence of the Spirit is important, but I conclude today by considering that the Spirit is also a spirit of power and action. There is a time to sit in the upper room and receive peace, and then there is the time for the Spirit to come as a driving wind and fire and force us out of the upper room. How amazing that it is the same Spirit that does all of this. Let’s cultivate a deeper relationship with this Holy Spirit so that we might have both peace and then the strength for action.

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