Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
This past Monday, we had a beautiful occasion in the life of the parish, namely, the celebration of Confirmation. It’s always a happy moment as we see our young men and women take this momentous step in their individual lives of faith. For most, it is a moment of culmination, having now completed their Sacraments of Initiation. My sincere hope is that they can appreciate and understand how important the reception of Confirmation truly is.
To be honest, if these young people are anything like I was when I received Confirmation, the depth of the Sacrament and the grace therein probably isn’t uppermost in their minds. Given everything else that they have going on in their lives, thinking about God or experiencing His presence does not come easily. That’s true of
both teenagers and many of us as adults. Yet, there is a tremendous movement happening in the lives of those confirmed, whether they’re cognizant of it or not. And sometimes it is only with the benefit of hindsight or distance that such things are noticed.
From my life and experience, the Holy Spirit is the person of the Trinity that I’ve always had the hardest time understanding and relating to. The Holy Spirit is hard to define and the common images associated with it do not help. Sometimes a dove, other times a flame; it’s not as easy to grasp as the family roles of God the Father
and God the Son. Even terms like the Advocate, while meaning to be helpful, can at times, leave us scratching our head in confusion instead.
And yet, as my faith life has both broadened and deepened, through prayer, study, and interaction with others, I’ve come appreciate the vital role of the Holy Spirit in my life. It’s hard to get into words and perhaps even harder to do so in a bulletin letter, but I’ve discovered that the Holy Spirit really is a guiding force in my life and in the lives of all the faithful.
That random call from a friend or family member when you just needed to hear from a loved one? The Holy Spirit. The sudden need to do something that just happens to put you in the right place and time to do something good for another? The Holy Spirit. That post on social media or advertisement or whatever that makes you consider making a change for the better in your life? The Holy Spirit. That person who pops up in prayer even though you haven’t thought of them in years? The Holy Spirit.
There are constant promptings of the Holy Spirit in our daily lives. Sometimes it’s as clear as a lightning bolt and other times as subtle as the whispering wind, but whatever is guiding us towards something better in our lives is absolutely the presence of the Holy Spirit. May our new confirmands know that moving forward and
may we all be reminded of it in our daily lives.
Peace and Goodness,