Daily Reflections

Acts 2:14, 22-33

Today is a bank holiday. A day to rest from work, take a break, enjoy yourself and be with your family; a day to ‘recreate’ which, as we all know, means ‘re-create’, to refresh and recuperate from our work. There is nothing wrong with that – rest and recreation are the flipside of working hard and giving your all. However, while we may rest in our bodies, the liturgy takes no rest in its leading of us through the breathtaking gospel story. No sooner have we revelled in the resurrection of our Lord than the liturgy leaps to the account of the outpouring of the Spirit at Pentecost – although we will have to wait for fifty days to pass before we celebrate this feast. The Church, almost in her excitement and joy, leads us to reflect and pray on the meaning of the outpouring of the Spirit.  

So intoxicated and happy were the first believers at the early hour of nine in the morning that people thought they were literally drunk! And, of course, they were – they were drunk on the Spirit of God. Peter proclaimed immediately that the disciples were not drunk on alcoholic spirits but on the Spirit of the Living God. In fulfilment of Jesus’ promise, God had poured out his Spirit to equip his followers for the task of proclaiming the gospel to the world. Peter saw in this unique and wonderful event the fulfilment of the words of the prophet Joel who had pointed to a time when the Spirit would indeed be poured out upon all humankind (Joel 2:28-32). The coming of the Holy Spirit was happening before their very eyes.

This was a transformative event. The coming of the Spirit brought about transformation in the lives of the disciples. They went from being cowed, cowardly and confused to joyful witnesses for Christ. It was as if they had drunk deeply from the well of salvation and were drunk on the spirit of joy. Are you drunk on joy? Is your parish a joy-fuelled and joy-filled community? In his recent Apostolic Exhortation Pope Francis chides us all in a teasing, fun kind of way, suggesting that too often as believers we can live as if it is Lent and not Easter, and we can seem as if we have just returned from a funeral not a resurrection!

Lord, fill me, on this Easter Monday, with the new joy and hope of the gospel.

Acts 2:14, 22-33  •  Psalm 15(16):1-2, 5, 7-11
Matthew 28:8-15

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