Gonzaga Eastern Point Retreat House
Today is our final reflection from our Lenten/Easter Journey: “Place Me With Your Son”. As I was pondering the scriptures especially the first reading (Acts 2, 1-11), I recalled a Pentecostal moment in my own life. Let me share it with you:
As a missionary, I was administrating a parish church of Luly, Haiti. One Sunday, after a full day leading people in the liturgy of the Word, visiting the sick and overseeing other ministries, I was tired. As I was heading home, I felt a driving force telling me: ‘You must leave now’. It was 6:00 pm. The voice inside of me continued the refrain: ‘You have to leave now!’ I resisted the voice saying to myself: I’m tired, I’ll go tomorrow. The consistent voice never stopped and influenced me to leave now. As I continued to walk, I questioned could it be the voice of the Holy Spirit. Although I didn’t understand the full message, I finally accepted. Like Abraham or Mary, I answered: “Here I am Lord, I come to do your will” (Ps. 39, 6-8). I went inside the rectory, packed a few things and left for my mother’s home.
Along the way to my mom’s house, I was curious to know what was happening. That voice was a constant companion on the journey. It became like a force, a real presence to guide me. I felt confused and wondered if something had happened to my mother (there was no cell phone at that time). I finally arrived at my mom’s place and was happy to find that nobody was sick, and everything was completely fine.
The voice! That interior voice changed from ‘leave now’ to like the Taizé’s chant: ‘Stay with me, remain here with me. Watch and pray’. I went to bed early and continued to pray the whole night. In the morning, when I wanted to sleep more, I heard that same voice saying: ‘Get up, be ready, your hour has come!’ Soon after I got ready, someone from the Luly community knocked at my door, it was Brother Elie. He came with a news: “people came looking for you with the intention of killing you. They had been watching you all day Sunday as you ministered to people. Your work and your preaching disturb them. They were angry that they didn’t find you, so they took everything in the house, except your bed.” I was relieved that my life was spared. Like the Jews celebrating “Shavuot” this week, my entire family praised God for saving my life. All what happened to me turned to be my Pentecostal moment!
If you’re like St. Ignatius in quest of your vocation, telling Mary to: “Place Me With Your Son”. If you’re like the apostles or in my situation of fear of reprisals. If you’re physically bound with sickness or lack of progress in life. Call upon the Holy Spirit. You may not be aware of his constant presence in your life. But know that in prayer, he’s listening and together you’ll will know what to do.
Invitation to prayer:
Pray this sequence of the Holy Spirit as often in your daily life. One day, you’ll be surprised that you will call the Holy Spirit not only my Comforter but also my Delight and my Love!