Pentecost: Living in a State of Grace

The Day of Pentecost is upon us, and so is the Holy Spirit.
 
"When the Day of Pentecost had come, the disciples were together. Suddenly from heaven there came a sound like the rush of wind.... Divided tongues, as of fire, appeared among them... and they were filled with the Holy Spirit." (Acts 2)

Jewish tradition held that Pentecost -- the "fiftieth day" after Passover -- was the day on which the Law of Moses was given.

But now something new is taking place: the gift of the Holy Spirit. For Christians, Pentecost is the Sunday when we are invited and empowered to "continue for ever in the risen life of Jesus Christ our Savior," as the Book of Common Prayer puts it (p. 307).

What does it mean to continue in the risen life of Christ? Simply put, it means to live in a state of grace.
 
But what is "a state of grace"? In general, it means to be "in sync" with the Will of God. This is what the Holy Spirit enables us to do.

And more specifically, it means to live according to our Baptismal Promises -- vows that culminate with the commitment to: "strive for justice and peace among all people, and respect the dignity of every human being." This* is a pretty good description of what it's like for Christians to live in a state of grace.
 
This Pentecost Sunday we will faithfully recite the Baptismal Promises. At the 9:00 Grace in the Garden service and the 10:00 Choral service, these vows will be occasioned by holy baptisms.  

On this Pentecost Sunday, give thanks for the gift of the Holy Spirit and living in a state of grace!**

--Fr. Abshire+


*The Baptismal Covenant concludes:

Celebrant: Will you proclaim by word and example the Good News of God in Christ?
People:      I will, with God's help.
 
Celebrant:  Will you seek and serve Christ in all persons, loving your neighbor as yourself?
People:       I will, with God's help.
 
Celebrant: Will you strive for justice and peace among all people, and respect the dignity of every human being?
People:     I will, with God's help. (BCP p. 305)

**To learn more about the feast of Pentecost, view this short video.