“ And suddenly a sound came from heaven like the rush of a mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared to them tongues as of fire, distributed and resting on each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.” — Acts 2: 2 – 4

This year Pentecost is on May 23, 2021.

Saint Ann will celebrate the gifts of the Holy Spirit with Vespers for Pentecost on Saturday, May 22, 2021 @ 5:30 p.m. and during Pentecost Sunday’s Divine Liturgy, starting @ 10:00 a.m.

The Eparchy of Newton tells usThe Acts of the Apostles gives several instances of how the Holy Spirit’s power worked among the apostles. It lists: The Gift of Tongues (Acts 2:4-11) – The ability to proclaim the Gospel and to be understood in a number of languages otherwise unknown to the speaker. The Gift of Teaching (Acts 2:14-36) – The ability to express the mystery of the Gospel with clarity despite their humble background and lack of education. The Gift of Healing (Acts 3:1-10) – The ability to heal the physical illness of people and even, as in the case of Tabitha, to raise the dead. The Gift of Discernment (Acts 4:36- 5:11) – The ability to distinguish between spiritual truth and delusion, as when Peter detected the deceitful hearts of Ananias and Sepphira. The Gift of Passing on the Spirit (Acts 8:14-17) – The ability to confer the Gift of the Holy Spirit through the laying-on of hands. The Gift of Exorcism (Acts 16:16-18) – The ability to drive out evil spirits. All these gifts have been manifested throughout the life of the Church over the centuries with the exception of the first of these gifts, the multiplicity of tongues. According to St Augustine and St John Chrysostom, the purpose of the gift of tongues was to affirm “that the Gospel of God was to be proclaimed over the entire earth in all languages” (St Augustine, Homily on 1 John 6:10). That universal proclamation began almost immediately, fulfilling the purpose of the gift of tongues which ceased.

Without the Holy Spirit: God is far away,

Christ stays in the past,

the Gospel is a dead letter,

the Church is simply an organization,

authority – a matter of domination,

mission – a matter of propaganda,

the liturgy – no more than an evocation, Christian living – a slave morality.

“But in the Holy Spirit:

The cosmos is resurrected and groans with the birth-pangs of the kingdom, The risen Christ is there,

The Gospel is the source of life,

The Church shows forth the life of the Trinity,

Authority is a liberating service,

Mission is a Pentecost,

The liturgy is both memorial and anticipation,

Human action is deified

Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Antioch, Ignatius IV, quoted by Melkite Eparchy of Newton
Arcabas, Pentecost, 2005.