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  • Writer's pictureImmersed in Christ

Immersed in Christ: Third Tuesday of Easter: April 20, 2021

The Spirit Makes Holy

In Eucharistic prayer I the presider holds his hands over the offerings and prays: "Make holy these gifts, by sending down your Spirit upon them."

In Eucharistic prayer III he declares, "You are indeed Holy, O Lord… By the working of the Holy Spirit, you give Life to all things and make them holy… Therefore… by the same Spirit make holy these gifts we have brought to you."

Eucharistic prayer IV proclaims, "He sent the Holy Spirit from you, Father… so that, bringing to perfection his work in the world, he might sanctify creation to the full… May this same Holy Spirit graciously sanctify these offerings, that they may become the Body and Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ."

The root of the Semitic word qodesh, "holy" is "apartness," something separate, different from the profane. God, as transcendent, infinitely different from creatures, is "most holy." But God's holiness becomes, not just close, but interior to divine (graced) humans by the gift of the Holy Spirit (see Leon-Dufour, Dictionary of Biblical Theology). Christian holiness is the mystery of God's divine Life in us. It is not measured by good behavior. We are holy because we are divine, one with God in sharing his Life. Paul urges us to conform our behavior to what we already are: "If we live by the Spirit, let us also be guided by the Spirit" (Galatians 5:25).

ACTION: Claim, appreciate, and respect your divine value and that of others. Express this respect in all you say and do.

PRAYER: Holy Spirit, sanctify me.

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