By: Veronica H.
Date: September 22, 2023
“And I will ask the Father, and he shall give you another Paraclete, that he may abide with you forever.” Jn. 14: 16
Nearing the end of the Easter season, as usual, feelings of sadness started creeping into my heart. My spiritual life, strengthened by the seasons of Advent, Epiphany, Lent and Easter, has tended to lose fervor as we enter into the season of Ordinary Time, also known as the time after Pentecost. After the celebration of Pentecost, the Solemnity of the Holy Trinity and Corpus Christi, the major feast days would be few and far between. But this year my perspective changed; nothing is ordinary about Ordinary Time.
The Apostles were taught by our Lord, came to know Him intimately, witnessed his Passion, and Death, Resurrection and Ascension. We were instructed by the liturgy and celebrated the mysteries of the birth, life, death, Resurrection and Ascension of our Lord. Like a good mother, the Church led us to enter more deeply into meditating on the eternal love of God, who came to us in the flesh, born as a babe in a manger. She urged us to become more like this God of love by purifying us in meditation on His Passion. She reminded us of our eternal home in heaven as we celebrated the Resurrection and Ascension of Lord. Each one of these celebrations brought a special grace to us to form us in the likeness of Christ.
In his commentary entitled The Liturgical Year, Dom Guéranger, states:
At Christmas Christ was born within us; at Passiontide He passed on and into us His sufferings and atonements; at Easter He communicated to us His glorious, His untrammelled life; in His Ascension, He drew us after Him, and this even to heaven’s summit.
On Pentecost, the Apostles received the transforming power of the Holy Spirit and went out into the world to teach all nations of the salvation found in Christ. We received an increase of grace at the Great Feast of Pentecost to bring about our deeper conversion into the likeness of Christ. The time after Pentecost is to bring about the continual regeneration of our spiritual life based on the model given by Christ and under the influence of the Holy Spirit. Holy Mother Church, during this season of Ordinary Time, calls us to deepen our relationship with the Holy Spirit, who abides in us, teaching all things and transforming us in His love. We are called to live and act in imitation of our Lord, whom we have come to know through meditating on all the great events in the mysteries of our faith, so as to be perfected in love and be united with God forever in heaven.
“But the Paraclete, the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things, and bring all things to your mind, whatsoever I shall have said to you.” Jn. 14: 26
As the days of summer wane and the chill of autumn is upon us, I have been reflecting on the significance of the season of Ordinary Time, as the time of transformation by the Holy Spirit, in my life. There can be nothing ordinary when the Holy Spirit is at work. I’m becoming more attentive to and open to the influence of the Holy Spirit and His subtle work in my soul. He has been faithfully guiding me and calling me to a deeper conversion. I am more aware of those sins and bad habits in my life that need to be transformed by the help of the Holy Spirit.
Fittingly at this time of the year, our minds are brought once more to the mystery of our redemption as we celebrated the Feast of the Exaltation of the Cross that just passed on September 14th. This feast day provides us with the opportunity to refresh our fervor as we recall to mind with joy the eternal love of God manifested in the triumph of our Lord over sin and death and His glorious resurrection. As we meditate on the Cross, let us ask the Holy Spirit to help us to overcome sin to rise again with Christ throughout the next months of Ordinary time.
If at the end of this liturgical year we still feel that we have gained little in our transformation in Christ, the new year will give us again the opportunity to enter more deeply in meditating on the mysteries of our redemption and opening our hearts to Holy Spirit. May we relish in each of the seasons of the liturgical year so that we may profit from them in our growth in holiness.
 The Holy Bible. Douay-Rheims Version. (2009). Saint Benedict Press. (Original Work Published 1582, 1609).  Gueranger, Dom. Chapter 2: The Mystery of the Time after Pentecost,The Liturgical Year. The Liturgical Year Project. Retrieved 31 August, 2023 from https://lyp.network/lyp/497commentaryon-the-seasons/504-time-after-pentecost/3678-chapter-2-the-mystery-of-the-time-after-pentecost .  Ibid. The Holy Bible. Douay-Rheims Version. (2009). Saint Benedict Press. (Original Work Published 1582, 1609).