First Reading: Acts 2:1-11
Pentecost was originally a festival of the crops. This reading tells how it became one of the greatest occasions in history when God the Holy Spirit burst into human affairs. In all great religious experiences words become inadequate. ln spite of his mastery of language, Luke can only say that the coming of the Holy Spirit was like a powerful wind and like tongues of fire. There is mention of people from many places. These were Jews, citizens of the countries into which over the years they had been scattered, but always Jews, who returned to Jerusalem for the festival of Pentecost and found themselves caught up in the outpouring of the Spirit.
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 103: 1,24,29-31,34
Gathering thoughts from various accounts of creation that circulated in other lands, the psalmist has put together a magnificent hymn of praise to God the Maker of all things. ln the reading which is a small part of the full version, God’s majesty in creation is praised. Man and nature draw their life from God. Finally the psalmist declares God to be the centre of his joy.
Second Reading: Romans 8: 8- 17
Paul’s theme in this well known passage is the new life in the Spirit, a word used nearly thirty times in this chapter, As a result of our being declared righteous, there is a transformation brought about by the Holy Spirit, This indwelling Spirit raises us from our former life just as God raised Jesus from the dead. Life in the Spirit is life indeed and provides the status of sonship, and that in turn makes us heirs with Christ to share his suffering and his glory.
Gospel: John 14: 15-16,23-26
As the shadow of the Cross begins to fall upon Our Lord, he speaks of the love that exists between God and the believer. As the Lord's departure is near he speaks of the Advocate, the Spirit who will take his place. It is a word almost impossible to translate, with the basic meaning of "One called to be beside". However translated, the word refers to the Holy Spirit who will guide believers in the way of truth.