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Pentecost Sunday

“On the evening of the first day of the week, when the doors were locked …”  


The feast of locked doors – doors suddenly blown open!


The feast of isolation, fear, suspicion, betrayals, abandonment, and near despair.
All blown away by the resurrected Jesus whose first spoken words are:
“Peace … be with you.”

No recriminations. No finger pointing. No blaming.

Only words of forgiveness. Words of assurance.


The feast that reminds us of a bunch of people – the early disciples – who wanted only to slink away, go into hiding, and wallow in their guilt and shame.

And yet …

The Spirit of Second Chance breaks through the door and, with an eternally vast and lavish love, the ugliest kind of guilt and humiliation is instantly forgiven.

This Spirit of New Life rushes in like a great wind and embraces each one with a sense of peace so profound that the doors of their souls fly open and a great fire lights their hearts.

And, as if this were not enough …

An even greater surprise takes place.

Jesus chooses them – the very friends who abandoned and betrayed him – to be the wounded, forgiven healers who are to preach the Good News of God’s astounding mercy and love.

The very friends who handed Jesus over now become the same friends who begin a new community – a community eventually made up of people like you and me.
Pentecost – A feast of locked doors blown open.

                        A feast of confrontation denied.
                        A feast of challenge unimagined.

Because, instead of all the potential negativity and blame, what this great feast of Pentecost does is:
It won’t let us sit back and be amazed at its great imagery of fire and wind and blown open doors.

Instead, this feast of Pentecost demands that we each search our own soul in answer to one single challenge:
Where are the locked doors in your life?

Where do you find yourself isolated in fear, clutching anger to your heart, and refusing to emerge from emotional darkness – like those earliest disciples did?

Not just some miraculously stupendous happening of some 2000 years ago.

Rather, Pentecost shows in ultra-dramatic fashion what can potentially happen to every person who wants to escape the tyranny of fear, the misery of shame, the enslavement of vengeance.

For, as one author puts it:
“Pentecost is the experience of the apostles as they inhaled and exhaled the breath of God. Their proclamation enveloped all in a spirit of love, belonging, and oneness. What the original apostles experienced was ‘the mighty acts of God’ – a magnificent creation that included themselves, a covenant love that is never broken, forgiveness, redemption, and ultimately reunion with God.”

After three years of the global pandemic’s horrific illnesses, and the stress, depression, and millions of deaths, we are now thankfully entering a time of relative comfort once again. Relationships are re-opening, masks are being discarded, and we are now experiencing a comparative degree of safety once again. 

Locked doors are again being blown open.

That’s what Pentecost is all about.

Not just some magnificently miraculous event that happened 2000 years ago, but something that can happen in each of our lives right now.

Because this Feast of Pentecost is all about blowing open the locked doors in each of our own lives – doors, once opened, that can then welcome us into an even greater union with the Spirit Who beckons each of us on to a deeper and richer life in the Lord.

Or, as the familiar prayer puts it so beautifully:
“Come, Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful and kindle in them the fire of your love. Send forth your Spirit and they shall be re-created. And thou shall renew the face of the earth.”


Ted Wolgamot, Psy.D.

Art by Jim Matarelli
Sister Rachel’s Quote of the Week

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