May 22, 2015 | Issue 29

Chaplains' Newsletter
Pentecost 
"Come Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful and kindle in them the fire of your love." 

This weekend, the season of Easter concludes with the Solemnity of Pentecost. The roots of Pentecost can be found in the Jewish "counting of the omer" (the first cutting of the barley harvest offered to God) - the 50 days of the spring harvest between Pesach and Savuot (the Feast of Weeks or Pentecost). Like the Jewish festival, which begins with the celebration of liberation from slavery and ends with a celebration of giving of the Torah, the Christian celebration begins with the celebration of liberation through the Paschal Mystery and ends with the celebration of the gift of the Holy Spirit. 

This solemnity calls us to pray for guidance and wisdom from the Holy Spirit, so that our hearts may be rekindled as we work to build the Kingdom of God.  In his letter to the Galatians (Chapter 5), Paul names the fruits of the Holy Spirit which include love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness and self-control. How do we recognize these fruits in action in our lives as disciples of Christ? I invite you to watch the following video clip in which Fr. Robert Barron sheds some wisdom on what it means to walk the path of the Spirit and on recognizing the fruits of the Holy Spirit in our lives:
 



PRAYER TO THE HOLY SPIRIT 

KEY: CBW - Catholic Book of Worship III, CS - Celebrate in Song 

OPENING SONG: 

Suggestions: O Holy Spirit, Come to Bless (CBW 410), Send Us Your Spirit (CBW 414), Spirit Blowing Through Creation (CBW 415), Led by the Spirit (CS 6.18),  Living Spirit, Holy Fire (CS 6.20).

LEADER: In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. 

ALL: Amen. 

LEADER: Praying together in silence, let us ask God to bestow upon us the soothing balm of the Holy Spirit. 

(All pray in silence) 

READER: Jesus said, "If you love me, you will keep my commandments. 
And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, to be with you forever. This is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, because he abides with you, and he will be in you. I will not leave you orphaned; I am coming to you. In a little while the world will no longer see me, but you will see me; because I live, you also will live. On that day you will know that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you."

- John 14,15-20  

Brief reflective silence

LEADER: Having heard the Word of God 
and filled with the Holy Spirit, let us bring our petitions before God. The response to each invocation is: "Come, Holy Spirit."

READERLord, make our lives a temple of the Holy Spirit. We pray...

ALL:  Come, Holy Spirit.

READER:   Grant each of us the fruits of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, faithfulness. We pray...

ALL:  Come, Holy Spirit.

READER:  May the Holy Spirit speak through the lips of your servants who proclaim your Word. We pray...

ALL:  Come, Holy Spirit. 

READER:  Send your comforting Spirit to all who are in trouble and distress. We pray...

ALL:  Come, Holy Spirit.

READER:  Send your comforting Spirit to all who are victims of injustice. We pray...

ALL:  Come, Holy Spirit.

READER:  Keep all nations from hatred and war. We pray...

ALL:  Come, Holy Spirit. 

READER: Gather together all the nations by the breath of your Spirit. We pray...

ALL:  Come, Holy Spirit.

LEADER:  Let us pray.

Eternal God of Love,
in you we live and move and have our being.
Breathe through us again this day;
give us the courage to be open
and welcoming to your Spirit
that we may be led to do your will
and follow in your ways.
Through Christ our Lord.
Amen.

Let us offer one another a sign of God's peace.

Sources: Prayer Services for Parishes and Schools (Cymbala), Prayer for Parish Groups (Harrington & Kavanagh), Prayer for Each Day (Taiz?)




 
BLESSED OSCAR ROMERO: ADVOCATE FOR THE POOR AND OPPRESSED 


Slain Salvadoran Archbishop Oscar Romero will be beatified May 23 in San Salvador in a ceremony in Plaza Divino Salvador del Mundo. The archbishop said Cardinal Angelo Amato, prefect of the Congregation for Saints' Causes, will celebrate the Mass. 


O
scar Romero was born on August 15, 1917 in El Salvador. From an early age, he was already determined to become a priest. He entered the seminary at the age of 14 and was ordained a priest when he was 25 in 1942. Recognising the power of radio to reach the people, he convinced five radio stations to broadcast his Sunday sermons to peasant farmers who believed they were unwelcome in the churches.

In 
1970, he became Auxiliary Bishop in San Salvador. In 1974 he became Bishop of Santiago de Maria. At this time, Oscar Romero was described as a conservative, not wanting to break from tradition. He supported the hierarchy who encouraged conformity. He was uncomfortable with social action that challenged political leaders. Growing awareness during his two years as Bishop of Santiago de Maria, Romero was horrified to find that children were dying because their parents could not pay for simple medicines. He began using the resources of the diocese and his own personal resources to help the poor, but he knew that simple charity was not enough.

In 1977, Romero became Archbishop of San Salvador, the capital city. The situation in El Salvador was becoming worse and he couldn't remain silent any longer. The military were killing the Salvadorian people - especially those demanding justice. Thousands of people began to go missing. Romero demanded that the President of El Salvador thoroughly investigate the killings, but he failed to do so.

As more and more people disappeared with greater frequency, Oscar Romero had nothing left to offer his people except faith and hope. He continued to use the radio broadcast of his Sunday sermons to tell people what was happening throughout the country, to talk about the role of the Church and to offer his listeners hope that they would not suffer and die in vain.

On March 23, 1980, after reporting the previous week's deaths and disappearances, Oscar Romero began to speak directly to soldiers and policemen: "I beg you, I implore you, I order you... in the name of God, stop the repression!" The following evening, while saying Mass in the chapel of Divine Providence Hospital, Archbishop Oscar Romero was shot by a paid assassin.

Only moments before his death, Romero spoke these prophetic words: "Those who surrender to the service of the poor through love of Christ will live like the grain of wheat that dies... The harvest comes because of the grain that dies."

Pope Francis formally recognized Feb. 3 that Archbishop Romero was killed "in hatred of the faith" -- and not for purely political reasons.

 
(Biography partially excerpted from Caritas Australia)



FOR 
REFLECTION

Here are three songs that you can be used for your own prayer time or to share with your students. These songs can help in our prayer as we invoke the Holy Spirit to come upon us and to pray in us. 


"Breathe on me, breath of God" by Edwin Hatch

 
Breathe on me, Breath of God,

Fill me with life anew,
That I may love what Thou dost love,
And do what Thou wouldst do.

Breathe on me, Breath of God,
Until my heart is pure,
Until with Thee I will one will,
To do and to endure.

Breathe on me, Breath of God,
Till I an wholly Thine,
Until this earthly part of me
Glows with Thy fire divine.

Breathe on me, Breath of God,
So shall I never die,
But live with Thee the perfect life 
Of Thine eternity.  
 

"Send Us Your Spirit" by David Haas

Come Lord Jesus. Send us your Spirit. Renew the face of the earth. 

Come to us, Spirit of God. Breathe in us now. We sing together.
Spirit of hope and of light, fill all our lives.
Come to us, Spirit of God.

Come Lord Jesus. Send us your Spirit. Renew the face of the earth. 

Fill us with the fire of your love. Burn in us now. Bring us together. 
Come to us; dwell in us. Change our lives, oh Lord. Come to us, Spirit of God. 

Come Lord Jesus. Send us your Spirit. Renew the face of the earth. 

Send us the wings of new birth.
Fill all the earth with the love you have taught us.
Let all creation now be shaken with love. Come to us, Spirit of God.

Come Lord Jesus. Send us your Spirit. Renew the face of the earth. 


"Veni Sancte Spiritus" by the Community of 
Taiz?

Come Holy Spirit, from heaven shine forth:
 With your glorious light, Veni Sancte Spiritus

Come Father of the poor, come generous Spirit
Come light of our lives, Veni Sancte Spiritus.

Come from the four winds, O Spirit
Come, breath of God, disperse the shadows over us
Renew and strengthen your people, Veni Sancte Spiritus.

Father of the poor, come to our poverty
Shower on us the seven gifts of your grace,
Be the light of our lives, O come, Veni Sancte Spiritus. 

You are our only comforter, peace of the soul.
In the heat you shade us, in our labor you refresh us,
And in trouble you are our strength, Veni Sancte, Spiritus. 


May the Spirit of the Lord continue to inspire joy in your work.


In communion,
 
Janet Loo
Campus Minister/Director of Chamber Choir
King's University College
janet.loo@kings.uwo.ca

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