“Without the Holy Spirit all is cold; therefore, when we feel we are losing our fervour, we must instantly make a novena to the Holy Spirit to ask for faith and love... See, when we have made a retreat how we are full of good desires: these good desires are the breath of the Holy Ghost, which has passed over our souls, and has renewed everything like the warm wind which melts the ice and brings back the spring... When we have the Holy Spirit, the heart expands and bathes itself in divine love. And so we should say every morning, ‘O God, send me Thy Spirit to teach me what I am and what Thou art.’”
In encouraging us to make a novena in honour of the Holy Spirit, St John Vianney is leading us to the oldest of all novenas since it was first made at the direction of Our Lord Himself when He sent His apostles back to Jerusalem to await the coming of the Holy Spirit. We are invited to “join together with one heart in constant prayer” (Acts 1:14), in imitation of Mary and the disciples in those nine days in the Upper Room between Ascension and Pentecost. With them, we ask Jesus to send afresh his Holy Spirit upon us so that our individual lives, the lives of our families and communities, and the life of the Church may be renewed.
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