Sunday, June 12, 2011


Happy Feast of Pentecost! In our Community we have been preparing for this feast for the past nine days by praying the Novena to the Holy Spirit. The time of the Pentecost Novena has always been a rather solemn occasion in our Motherhouse. Until several years ago when we had more young Sisters in Formation we had Eucharistic Adoration 24/7 for the nine days preceding the Feast of Pentecost. Young and not always so young Sisters took those after midnight hours. This year was very special, too. We invited people from the neighborhood to join us in our prayer. It was a very edifying experience for all.

We do have Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament every day from around 9:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. During the Novena the time was extended until 9:00 p.m. As we took our turns in Chapel we remembered our families, friends and benefactors in a special way.

Our Founder, Father Thomas Augustine Judge, CM, had great devotion to the Holy Spirit. This is an important part of our spiritual heritage. Article 11 of our Rule of Life says, "We are to make the Holy Spirit better known and loved. By steadfast prayer in our Cenacles we seek to attract the Holy Spirit so that our own hearts may be enkindled with God's love and that we may spread this fire to others. We ask to be filled with the gifts of the Spirit, wisdom and fortitude especially."

There is so much that could be said about the Holy Spirit, but anyone that I know who has this devotion has had powerful experiences of his presence. Let us pray that Holy Spirit continue to lead, guide and enlighten us in all that we are about so that we may attain the holiness to which we have been called.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Holy Spirit Novena Day 9

Day Nine
The fruit of the Spirit is Self-Control.

Finally, we beg you in Jesus Christ, that as you learned from us how you ought to walk and to please God, just as you are now doing, you will do so more and more. (1 Thes 4:1)

Missionary Cenacle Meditations
What is the big thing you are going to do for your Savior? Choose some specific work of self-control, self-renunciation, or detachment: an act that is contrary to the spirit of the world. Do something which will mark off for you another chapter of progress in the spiritual life. In all things let it be a closer following of Him, a more cheerful taking up of His cross. (p. 21)

For reflection
In baptism, I received the Holy Spirit. The fruit of the Spirit is already mine. How have I grown spiritually over the years? How is my behavior a witness to my commitment to follow Jesus?

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Holy Spirit Novena Day 8

Day Eight
The fruit of the Spirit is Gentleness.

But a Samaritan came by, and when he saw the man, he had compassion, and went to him, and bound his wounds, and brought him to an inn, and took care of him. (Lk 10:33-34)

Missionary Cenacle Meditations
The love of Christ urges us. In other words, we are doing it for Him. We see Him in them—in their souls created to His Image and likeness. We minister to Him. Surely, that was a soiled face that Veronica ministered to. It was blood-stained and dirty. But it was the face of Christ. (p. 9)

For reflection
In baptism, I received the Holy Spirit. The fruit of the Spirit is already mine. Today, where am I being called to respond with gentleness?

Holy Spirit Novena Day 7

Day Seven
The fruit of the Spirit is Faithfulness.

If God is for us, who is against us?...Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? (Rom 8:31,35)

Missionary Cenacle Meditations
We should be like a rock in the midst of an angry sea. The waves beat against it and over it, but when the waters have subsided and the calm comes, the rock is still there. And so it should be with our will. No matter how our mind seems divided, no matter how distracted we are, no matter whether we be in the clouds or in the shadows of darkness, this we should know: that we love God and we want Him. If you feel that, you are as that rock in the midst of the waters. (p. 200)

For reflection
In baptism, I received the Holy Spirit. The fruit of the Spirit is already mine. When have I felt like a rock beaten by the waves? What trials has my faith already survived?

Holy Spirit Novena Day 6

Day Six
The fruit of the Spirit is Goodness.

“You are the light of the world.... Let your light shine before all, so that when they see your good works, they give glory to your Father in heaven.” (Mt 5:14,16)

Missionary Cenacle Meditations
Live more in the Presence of God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. Realize more and more that every human being whom you meet is the living image of the Blessed Trinity. Respect and honor all as a consequence. (p. 3)

For reflection
In baptism, I received the Holy Spirit. The fruit of the Spirit is already mine. Do I truly believe I am good? Is there someone I know who needs to see his or her own goodness?

Holy Spirit Novena Day 5

Day Five
The fruit of the Spirit is Kindness.

Do not grieve the Holy Spirit, in whom you are sealed for redemption. Let all bitterness and anger and slander be put away from you, and be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving as God in Christ forgave you. (Eph 4: 30-32)

Missionary Cenacle Meditations
We want kindness, we want love. We should learn from the Heart of our Divine Lord to be kind. What is your nature? Are your thoughts kindly? If your thoughts are not kindly your words will not be kindly. A kind person makes allowance, a kind person is considerate, a kind person isn’t looking to get something out of others. (p. 231)

For reflection
In baptism, I received the Holy Spirit. The fruit of the Spirit is already mine. When have I received true kindness? When have I been kind to someone who I knew really needed it?

Monday, June 6, 2011

Fourth Day of Holy Spirit Novena

Day Four
The fruit of the Spirit is patience.

Be patient until the comin of the Lord. Look how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, being patient over it until it receives the fall and the spring rains. So you should be patient and not lose heart, for the Lord's coming is near. (Mt. 5:43)

Missionary Cenacle Meditations
A patient person is a delight - like an anchor, like a solid rock. You always find patient people the same way. Their judgement is good because they think out of a calm tranquil mind. They take their time in judging things and analyzing things. (p. 306)

For reflection
In Baptism I received the Holy Spirit. The fruit of the Spirit is already mine. When do I feel calm and tranquil? How does it affect my actions?

Third Day of Holy Spirit Novena

Day Three
The Fruit of the Spirit is Peace.

The disciples were glad when they saw the Lord. Jesus said to them, "Peace be with you. As the Father sent me, so I send you." And after saying this, he breathed on them. (Jn 20:20-22)

Missionary Cenacle Meditations
Recently, our Brothers on the farm were waiting for high winds to calm down so they might plands seeds in well prepared fields. One of them said, "If we sow this seed now it will be all blown away." That evening a calm came, the seed was sown and remained safe. So our souls must be calm if we are to receive the inspiration of the HOly Spirit. (p.323)

For reflection
In baptism, I received the Holy Spirit. The fruit of the Spirit is already mine. What does the peace of God feel like? How does it ssend me forth?

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Second Day of Holy Spirit Novena

Day Two
The fruit of the Spirit is Joy.

When I look at the sky, the work of your hands, the moon and stars which you made–what are we, that you think about us, mere mortals, that you care about us? Yet you made us little lower than angels, and crowned us with glory and honor. (Ps 8:3-5)

Missionary Cenacle Meditations
As the sun gives life to the earth and enables plants to produce beautiful flowers of endless variety of color, form and fragrance, and fruits of a thousand different tastes, so the Holy Spirit, by the warmth and light He infuses into our souls, enables us to bring forth the celestial flowers and fruits of every virtue. (p. 83)

For reflection
In baptism, I received the Holy Spirit. The fruit of the Spirit is already mine. When in my life have I felt joy? How can I share this fruit?

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Novena to the Holy Spirit

Day One
The Fruit of the Spirit is Love.

"...but I say to you, love your enemies,
and pray for those who persecute you.” (Mt 5:43)

Missionary Cenacle Meditations
During this novena I call your attention to the Fruit of the Holy Spirit, charity. Charity is the love of God, the love of our neighbor. The love of God demands us to do much for Him. How ardently I pray the Holy Spirit to infuse more into us the love of God. Pray often that you may have an abundance of this Fruit of holy Charity. Truly loving God you will surely love your neighbor. God’s love will make the burdens of life easy to bear. (p. 157)

For reflection
In baptism, I received the Holy Spirit. The fruit of the Spirit is already mine. When in my life have I felt charity or compassion for someone who hurt or angered me?

A Great Tradition

Since 1913 our Community has maintained a perpetual novena to the Holy Spirit. Even though most of our Sisters pray this daily, missions are given an assigned time to pray the novena. This means almost one hundred years of an unbroken tradition!

During the nine days before Pentecost the enter Missionary Cenacle Family (Sisters, the Missionary Cenacle Apostolate, the lay branch, as well as our Brothers, and the Blessed Trinity Missionary Institute) prays a novena to the Holy Spirit.

Will you join us in this tradition?

I am afraid I am starting a day late, but if we begin today, we can finish on the actual Feast of Pentecost, next Sunday.

Our Sisters in Trinta have prepared a novena that provides a brief reflection from Sacred Scripture, a meditation from our Founder, Fr. Thomas Judge, CM and a we as a personal reflection.

I believe this novena is a wonderful tool for spiritual growth.