Pope Benedict XVI celebrates the Pentecost Mass in St. Peter's Basilica at the Vatican on May 23, 2010. (Daylife-Getty Images)
Bulgarian Delegation visits Vatican:
Pope Benedict XVI exchanges gifts with Bulgarian Prime Minister Bojko Borisov (L) during a private audience in the pontiff's studio at the Vatican May 22, 2010. (Daylife Images-Reuters, AP, Getty)
Pope celebrates Pentecost:
Birthday of the Church:
Veni Creator Spiritus:
Jewish Pentecost roots, via Taylor Marshall:
Before reciting the Regina Coeli prayer from his apartment window, Pope Benedict XVI spoke of Pentecost and the constant “effusion” of the Holy Spirit on the Church, “without which it would exhaust its forces, like a sailboat lacking wind.” He taught that there is no Church without Pentecost and no Pentecost without Mary. The celebration of the Solemnity renews strong moments of unity on local and universal levels, he said, citing the Vatican Councils and the occasion of John Paul II’s meeting with ecclesial movements in the Square in 1998 as examples.
“But the Church,” he continued, “knows innumerable ‘pentecosts’ that enliven the local communities: think of the Liturgy, in particular of those that lived in special moments for the life of the community, in those the strength of God is perceived in an evident way, instilling joy and enthusiasm in souls.
“We think of so many prayer conventions, in which the young people feel clearly the call of God to root their lives in his love, also consecrating themselves entirely to Him,” said Pope Benedict.
“So,” he observed, “there is no Church without Pentecost.”
And, he added before the Marian prayer, “there is no Pentecost without the Virgin Mary.”
She was present in the Upper Room when with the disciples when the Holy Spirit descended and, as she is “in all places and times,” the Pope explained, including his recent trip to Fatima as an example.
“What did that immense multitude live, in fact, in the esplanade of the Sanctuary, where all of us were a single heart and soul, if it wasn’t a renewal of Pentecost?
“Among us was Mary, the Mother of God,” Pope Benedict said of the Mass he celebrated in Fatima with 500,000 people in attendance on May 13.
Saying that wherever Christians join in prayer with Mary, the Lord offers them his Spirit, Pope Benedict XVI closed by invoking her aid for the Church and its ministers, “so that the message of salvation may be announced to all peoples.”
One of the most widely used hymns in the Church, Veni, Creator Spiritus, is attributed to Rabanus Maurus (776-856). It is used at Vespers, Pentecost, Dedication of a Church, Confirmation, and Holy Orders and whenever the Holy Spirit is solemnly invoked. A partial indulgence is granted to the faithful who recite it. A plenary indulgence is granted if it is recited on January 1st or on the feast of Pentecost.
mentes tuòrum visita,
imple supérna gràtia,
quae tu creàsti péctora.
Qui dìceris Paràclitus,
et spiritàlis ùnctio.
Tu septifòrmis mùnere,
dextrae Dei tu dìgitus,
tu rite promìssum Patris,
sermòne ditans gùttura.
Accénde lumen sénsibus:
infùnde amòrem còrdibus:
infìrma nostri còrporis
virtùte firmans pérpeti.
Hostem repéllas lòngius,
pacémque dones pròtinus:
ductòre sic te praevio
vitémus omne nòxium.
Per te sciàmus da Patrem,
noscàmus atque Fìlium,
te utriùsque Spìritum
credàmus omni témpore.
Deo Patri sit gloria,
Et Filio,qui a mortuis
In saeculorum saecula.
Come, Holy Spirit, Creator blest,
and in our souls take up Thy rest;
come with Thy grace and heavenly aid
to fill the hearts which Thou hast made.
O comforter, to Thee we cry,
O heavenly gift of God Most High,
O fount of life and fire of love,
and sweet anointing from above.
Thou in Thy sevenfold gifts are known;
Thou, finger of God’s hand we own;
Thou, promise of the Father, Thou
Who dost the tongue with power imbue.
Kindle our sense from above,
and make our hearts o’erflow with love;
with patience firm and virtue high
the weakness of our flesh supply.
Far from us drive the foe we dread,
and grant us Thy peace instead;
so shall we not, with Thee for guide,
turn from the path of life aside.
Oh, may Thy grace on us bestow
the Father and the Son to know;
and Thee, through endless times confessed,
of both the eternal Spirit blest.
Now to the Father and the Son,
Who rose from death, be glory given,
with Thou, O Holy Comforter,
henceforth by all in earth and heaven.
Feast of Pentecost-The feast of Shavuot (“Weeks”) occurred forty-nine days (seven weeks) after the Feast of Passover. Since it was the fiftieth day after Passover, it acquired the Greek name of Pentecost, meaning “fiftieth.”
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Veni Creator Spiritus (Come Holy Spirit)
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"But the Church knows countless 'pentecosts' that vivify the local communities," he reflected. "We think of the liturgies, particularly those experienced in special moments of the community’s life, in which the power of God is perceived in an evident way, infusing joy and enthusiasm in souls. We think of many other gatherings of prayer in which young people clearly feel the call of God to root their lives in his love, even consecrating themselves entirely to him."
Here is a translation of the homily Benedict XVI gave today at a Mass he celebrated in St. Peter's Basilica for the feast of Pentecost
Benedict XVI's entrance procession in St. Peter's Basilica was accompanied by the adult and child male voices of the Sistine Chapel intoning "Tu es Petrus"