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    • Sunday service - Holy Communion October 2, 2022 at 9:30 am – 11:00 am Grace Church 215 Pleasant Street, Sheldon, VT Website: www.gracechurchsheldon.orgTime:  09:30 AM Eastern Time (US and Canada)        Every week on Sun.Join Zoom Meetinghttps://us02web.zoom.us/j/83929911344?pwd=alZQTWZMN0ZkWFFPS1hmNjNkZkU2UT09Meeting ID: 839 2991 1344Password: Call for detailsOne tap mobile+13126266799,,83929911344#,,1#,816603# US (Chicago)+19294362866,,83929911344#,,1#,816603# US (New York)Dial by your location        +1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)        +1 929 436 2866 US (New York)Meeting ID:…
    • Sunday service - Holy Communion October 9, 2022 at 9:30 am – 11:00 am Grace Church 215 Pleasant Street, Sheldon, VT Website: www.gracechurchsheldon.orgTime:  09:30 AM Eastern Time (US and Canada)        Every week on Sun.Join Zoom Meetinghttps://us02web.zoom.us/j/83929911344?pwd=alZQTWZMN0ZkWFFPS1hmNjNkZkU2UT09Meeting ID: 839 2991 1344Password: Call for detailsOne tap mobile+13126266799,,83929911344#,,1#,816603# US (Chicago)+19294362866,,83929911344#,,1#,816603# US (New York)Dial by your location        +1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)        +1 929 436 2866 US (New York)Meeting ID:…
    • Sunday service - Holy Communion October 16, 2022 at 9:30 am – 11:00 am Grace Church 215 Pleasant Street, Sheldon, VT Website: www.gracechurchsheldon.orgTime:  09:30 AM Eastern Time (US and Canada)        Every week on Sun.Join Zoom Meetinghttps://us02web.zoom.us/j/83929911344?pwd=alZQTWZMN0ZkWFFPS1hmNjNkZkU2UT09Meeting ID: 839 2991 1344Password: Call for detailsOne tap mobile+13126266799,,83929911344#,,1#,816603# US (Chicago)+19294362866,,83929911344#,,1#,816603# US (New York)Dial by your location        +1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)        +1 929 436 2866 US (New York)Meeting ID:…

The Day of Pentecost May 27, 2012

Acts 2: 1-21
Psalm 104: 24-34, 35b
Romans 8: 22-27
John 15: 26-27, 16: 4b-15

Today is the feast of Pentecost. This is the culmination of the Great Fifty Days of Easter. Easter is not just one day. It is a whole season of the Church year, a season during which we light the Paschal candle to symbolize the presence of the risen Christ and our new life in and with him.

During the Easter season, all of our lessons each Sunday have been from the New Testament, or Greek Scriptures. We have been with the disciples as the risen Christ has appeared to them. We have been with our Lord as he has told us that he is our Good Shepherd and that he is the Vine and we are the branches.  In our readings from the Book of Acts, we have seen how the early Church proclaimed the Good News of new life in Christ and how Peter and the others realized that this new faith was for everyone.

In our Gospel for today, Jesus is telling his followers that he has to go to the Father. They are devastated. What will they do without him? He tells them that it is to their advantage that he is going, because, if he does not go away, the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, will not be able to come to them. He says that he has many things to say to them, but they cannot bear them now. He tells them that, when the Spirit of truth comes, the Spirit will guide them into all the truth.

Our Lord has ascended. He is no longer physically here. But he has sent the Holy Spirit to guide us into all the truth. We are his Body here on earth.

As St. Teresa of Avila wrote,

 “Christ has no body now but yours.
No hands, no feet, on earth but yours.
Yours are the eyes through which He looks compassion on the world.
Yours are the feet with which He walks to do good.
Yours are the hands with which He blesses all the world.
Yours are the hands, yours are the feet, yours are the eyes, you are His body.”

The Spirit is the life-energy in the Body of Christ. The Spirit is like the life-giving sap in the vine. It’s the electrochemical energy of life in the Body. The Spirit strengthens us to pray the prayer of Christ, learn the mind of Christ, and do the deeds of Christ. The Spirit guides us into all the truth, but it is not a black and white, narrow truth; it is a multifaceted, rich, deep, broad, inclusive truth grounded in love and compassion.

In our reading from the Book of Acts, Chapter 2, we experience again the inspiring account of the coming of the Spirit. The Day of Pentecost is a Jewish feast. The faithful have come from all over the world to celebrate. The disciples are in the house where they have been living and praying together. The Spirit descends with a great wind, like the desert ruach, and flames dance over the heads of the disciples. There is a great noise. People gather. And this little band of Galileans speak in languages that people from all over the world can understand. Jesus’ Followers are able to speak the love of God to all these people, heart to heart.

In our epistle from the Letter to the Romans, Paul says that the whole creation has been groaning in labor pains. The creation is trying to give birth to the shalom of God, the kingdom of peace, harmony, and wholeness. We groan, too, as we see people killing each other, people starving, people with no shelter, injustice of various kinds, instead of God’s reign of peace.

But we have hope because we know God’s vision for the world and we work and wait with patience because we know that God’s Spirit is at work in us and in the world. The Spirit helps us at all times. The Spirit even helps us when we do not know how to pray, as the text says,  “interceding for us with sighs too deep for words.”

Jesus has called us his friends, and he has sent the Holy Spirit to give us hope and strength. Because of his love, we are as close to God, and Jesus, and the Spirit, as we are to our own breath.

“Christ has no body now but yours.”

 Just as truly as 2,000 years ago, the Spirit is with us now, pouring out gifts so that we can share the Good News just as the apostles did, so that we can help  to bring in God’s shalom and speak God’s love heart to heart with everyone we meet. 

                                                                   Amen.

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