May 20, 2023

Dear St. Martin of Tours Family and Friends,

Pentecost commemorates the moment, fifty days after Easter, when the Holy Spirit was sent by the Father and the Son upon the Apostles, thus establishing the Catholic Church. Since that day, 1990 years ago, the Holy Spirit has dwelt within the Catholic Church as a soul dwelling within a body. Other churches which have split off from the Catholic Church may exhibit signs of the Spirit’s presence, but only in the Catholic Church does the Holy Spirit find its proper home in the world.

If indeed our Church possesses (and is possessed entirely by) the Holy Spirit, how come it seems sometimes that the manifestation of the gifts and the fruits of the Spirit are so relatively rare? The answer isn’t that miracles, prophecies, and so forth aren’t manifest in the Church today. Rather, we just don’t hear about them. In areas of the world where the Church is severely persecuted, where becoming a Catholic could mean a death sentence, and in places where the material blessings (and curses) of the First World have not reached the common people, it is in those places where the average Catholic will experience such strong movements of God. Such movements are necessary for the spiritual survival of the Faithful who must exercise heroic virtues on a daily basis to stay alive and to care for their loved ones.

If ever such a persecution comes to the Unites States, or if there comes a time when the daily necessities of life become scarce, Catholics (and you likely would be one of them!) who choose to adhere to their Faith no matter the cost and who cling to God for all their needs, will be quickly rewarded with what are enumerated by St. Paul as the Nine Charismatic Gifts of the Holy Spirit, and to sustain them, they will begin to feel in a new and profound way the Nine Gifts of the Holy Spirit.

Notice how the Nine Gifts are divided according to the three realms of human action—thought, word, and deed — with each category having three special gifts ascribed to it. The fruits of the Holy Spirit are also divided into three parts, with the first three being “theological,” that is, having to do with our experience of God’s presence within us (love, joy, and peace); the next three having to do with our feelings about loving others (patience, kindness, and goodness); with the final three concerning the regulation of our own interior emotions (faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control).

Veni Creator Spiritus! Come Holy Spirit!

Father Waldman Signature

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