Welcome to Recorded Mass:

 

Pentecost  Sunday 

31st May 2020

Father David, St Mary of the Assumption, Burnley

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Public Domain Church Music courtesey of https://www.timeforworship.com/ Organist: Clyde McLennen

Our Parish Prayer

Heavenly Father, as your Son became the Good Samaritan to help us through our fallen times, we pray that with your help and guidance our parish family will grow and flourish.

Help us to see the world through your eyes, and to stay on the right path to help those who are in need.

We ask this through Christ Our Lord.

Amen

 

 

 

Pentecost  Sunday 

This last day of the season of Easter is when The Risen Lord gives the Spirit and thus inaugurates the Mission of the Church. I am convinced that we should mark the season of Easter better. Last year we had a lovely vigil for Pentecost. Luke and I have produced this year three short video reflections involving young people from BTCC to help us prepare for Pentecost. We called these reflections 'Pentecost at Home'.

On Day one of  our 'Pentecost at Home' reflections, we looked at why we have the Church. It is to remind us that the church is the vehicle through which God can give us salvation. The Church has been on a journey since that first Pentecost day when the church began .St Paul tells us about the different gifts that the spirit brings to his people. The church is people with the spirit, and we normally receive the Holy Spirit at baptism. Therefore the Church consists of people who are baptised. Even though this year our church buildings are closed because of the virus restrictions, this does not stop us being the Church. We are the Body of Christ and we carry on being Church through the love we have for our Lord  and our response to his loving concern for us and each other. In this way the spirit of Christ is alive and at work in us.

On day 2 of our 'Pentecost at Home', we thought about change. In the first reading at Mass, we see the effect the Holy Spirit had on the Apostles. We are told it appears like tongues of fire which rest on the head of each of them. Fire is a symbol of change and of renewal. Nothing is ever the same again after a fire. Also after a fire everything has to be renewed. The Apostles were totally different after Pentecost, they were never the same again;  the Holy Spirit renewed them and they were on fire with love for the Lord. This made them courageous and confident and they went out into the streets of Jerusalem and everyone who heard them regardless of what language they spoke could understand them. There was no more fear or doubting;  they are totally focused on being faithful to the Lord’s command to go out to the whole world and tell the Good News of Jesus Christ.  They were to bring the Gospel to the whole of the world. They would never look back from this mission and the presence of the Church today in almost every country throughout the world today is testimony to their faithfulness to this.

On day three of our Pentecost at Home reflection, we focused on prayer. In the Gospel which is set on Easter Sunday Evening, Jesus breathes on the gathered disciples and gives them the Holy Spirit. The Lord breathed his last breath on the Cross but the new life of Easter enabled the Risen Lord to breathe new life into the Apostles and thus began the Church.  One of the obvious things about being alive is that we breathe; breath is a sign of life. So the Church with the Spirit, takes it’s first breaths through the breath of Christ. He gives them the mission for the salvation through the forgiveness of sins. The Spirit does is to lead us to Christ. The Spirit also leads us to prayer because no one finds prayer easy, but it’s the Holy Spirit within us that gives us the desire to want to pray and to want to be in God’s presence. Just as food is fuel for the body then prayer is fuel for the soul: we need prayer as much as we need air to breathe. Time spent with God is the way we can get to know the Lord and the way that we remind ourselves of our need for God for the very gift of life itself.

I will finish with some questions for us to ponder on this glorious day; We can sometimes think that we don’t need God, but Pentecost is a time when we can ask ourselves:

What are the different ways that we need God in our lives? Secondly today is a chance to think about how we might question our priorities and see how we might need to change? Thirdly we need to think about the quality of our prayer lives. The closures of our churches has effected the way we practise our faith, but has asked to be more creative about how we pray. What is the quality of our prayer life on this Pentecost at home?

So, Pentecost is when we celebrate that the Risen Lord gives the Spirit which breathes life into the Church. On this sacred day, may the Lord bless you and reinvigorate your faith through his holy apostolic Church