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Reflections

1. The Icon of the Blessed Trinity

St. Athanasius, the fifth century patriarch of Alexandria, summarized the purpose of the incarnation:

the Son of God became one with us that we might become one with God.

This purpose is beautifully evoked by the famous 15th century icon of the hospitality of Abraham written by Russian artist Andrei Rublev.

The Rublev icon depicts the event recounted in Genesis chapter 18when Abraham is visited by three heavenly bodies and promised that Sarah, his wife, would give birth.

With the Father looking to the Son and Spirit and they beholding the gaze of the Father, a perfect circle of communion is formed.

The reader is beckoned to the open space at the front of the table.

It is the Spirit that beckons us and enables us to approach and find the place prepared for us.

This is our place. We are at home in the embrace of God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

Life-giving Spirit of God,
You breathe in us a love for the Father and the mission of the Son.
Fill us with your wisdom and peace that we can calmly discern your will for us.
Direct all our action by your holy inspirations,
and carry them on by your gracious breath within us,
that every prayer and work of ours may begin from you,
and by you be happily ended. Amen.

2. The Seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit: From the perspective of a married couple

WISDOM
We see God in all those moments we share together
-from heart-felt conversation to doing the dishes.
UNDERSTANDING & COUNSEL
The sum is greater than the individual parts
You make me want to be a better person and you challenge me to live a full and meaningful life as a servant of Christ.
FORTITUDE
Marriage ain't easy: but it's worth it!
KNOWLEDGE
When I look at you, I understand the meaning of God.
PIETY
The family that prays together: stays together.
FEAR OF THE LORD
We devote ourselves to one another with respect, and, in my case, awe of my partner.
In a similar way, we put our faith and trust in the Lord.

3. The Holy Spirit in the Spiritan Rule of Life [SRL]

SRL locates the Spiritan Vocation within the communal life of the triune God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit. It is through God's Spirit living in us that this vocation is lived [SRL 1, 83]. The signs of this vocation are consecration, dedication, openness, and intimacy.
Spiritans recognize that they are:
  • Consecrated by the Holy Spirit living in them to complete Christ's mission on earth [50].
The first fruits of this consecration are joy in God's unfathomable love for all; adoration for the God who is love, and liberation from all that prevents generous service of God through service of others [53]. This consecration is lived out every day in self-giving love expressed in many different ways in the varied circumstances of life [54, 55] 
  • Dedicated to the Holy Spirit [6] and devotion to Mary, Mother of the Lord [89]
who models willing obedience and faithfulness to God so that we, like her may welcome into our lives the Spirit of love to be the source of all that we do .
  • Available for the service of God's Kingdom in the world [5, 74]
It is the Spirit that brings us together and sends us out on mission [39]. We discern the possibilities for such service through attentive listening to the Spirit at work in the church and the world [44.1]. Each one gifted by the same Spirit has a contribution to make for the well-being of the community and the spread of the gospel [43.1]. It is the Spirit that gives life and empowers the doing of what is right and so fulfills in us our shared destiny of communion with God [76]. 
  • Intimate with the God who is love [87, 88]
We cultivate times and places of quiet in our lives to listen for the voice of the Spirit [99.5], recognizing that it is the Spirit within that empowers us to achieve what we cannot by ourselves (Rom 8:26) and entrust ourselves to that same Spirit [85]. She purifies and changes us that this may be so (Gal 5:22-23). We grow into fullness of life through the Spirit transforming us from within [86]. The within and without of our lives conjoin in "practical union" through the penetrating love of God empowering love for one another.

4.  The Holy Spirit in Spiritan Life and Mission

"When the Spirit of God Inspires a Work .... "

by Amadeu Martins, C.S.Sp.

From the time of the foundation of the Holy Ghost Seminary and Community to the time of the fusion with the Congregation of the Holy Heart of Mary, we can distinguish - ever more clearly - a central theme of thought and of action: it is the spirit of the Congregation which had its beginning in Poullart des Places and reached its full flowering in Francis Libermann.