By Emily Schmid, Director of Liturgy and Music
When I was twenty-four years old, I was baptized in the Holy Spirit. This practice, common among those who profess a charismatic spirituality, refers to the moment a person gives the Holy Spirit permission to work in their life. Up to that point, although I had received the Holy Spirit through the Sacraments of Baptism and Confirmation, the Holy Spirit had laid dormant in my soul like an unwrapped gift sitting under the Christmas Tree. When I finally unwrapped that gift, my life was changed. I felt more capable of living the Christian life and saw the world in color verses black and white. In the first reading for Pentecost Sunday, it says that “the Spirit enabled [the disciples] to proclaim” (Acts 2:1-11). The moment I unlocked the Spirit’s power to work within me, I was enabled to love in the specific way God called me, without inhibition and with great joy.
The bible uses many names for the Holy Spirit such as Advocate, Paraclete, a whisper, and a strong driving wind, but I see the Holy Spirit as the Great Enabler. To those who give the Spirit permission, it enables authentic peace and true joy. It enables a Christian to love Christ more deeply and follow His commands more fully. Jesus promises us that whoever has a relationship with the Holy Spirit will be enabled to do the works of Jesus and even do greater works than Jesus himself! (John 14:12). There is no limit of what you can do when the Spirit takes hold of your life.
The entirety of the Acts of the Apostles is the story of what can happen when one allows the Holy Spirit to completely take control. The Gospel message was spread throughout the known world, and men and women who otherwise lived ordinary lives were enabled to do extraordinary works. Our Church was built through the power of the Holy Spirit, a Spirit that is still active in the Church today. We are a charismatic Church called to rely on the power of the Holy Spirit to witness to Christ’s love through the proclamation of the Gospel. God wants to do great things in you for His Glory through the power of the Holy Spirit. Do you give it permission to enable the power of God in you?
Practice: Through your prayer, develop a relationship with the Holy Spirit and give it permission to enable God’s gifts in your life by praying the Come Holy Spirit prayer. Also, listen and pray with St. Francis’ Holy Spirit playlist on the Music Ministry webpage.
Come Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful and kindle in them the fire of your love. Send forth your Spirit and they shall be created. And You shall renew the face of the earth.
O, God, who by the light of the Holy Spirit, did instruct the hearts of the faithful, grant that by the same Holy Spirit we may be truly wise and ever enjoy His consolations, through Christ Our Lord, Amen.