On Pentecost, the gospel text is John 20: 19-23.
Jesus comes among the disciples who are huddled in fear after his death, and Jesus says to them "Peace be with you. Receive the Holy Spirit." He breaths on them... in this pandemic time, we might say, "don't let anyone breath on you!"
There is a word in Hebrew, "ruach," which can be translated into English in three ways: "spirit," "breath," or "wind." I think it's a helpful word when we hear any of those words in scripture - like in the Pentecost story from Luke (Acts 2:1-21). "suddenly from heaven there came a sound like the rush of a violent wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting" (vs.2). Or when we hear of God breathing life into the first people (Genesis 2:7) - we might also understand that as spirit... as a similar kind of wind rushing life into the from-the-earth being.
The Pentecost story reminds us that we are the Body of Christ in the world, animated into being, filled with the Spirit to be Christ in our local communities. To live with compassion, to work towards justice, to seek peace.
At Gloria Dei, we're also launching a new graphic, or logo, this weekend. It draws upon imagery from our "Gloria Dei window" in our sanctuary, which uses colours of the liturgical year, and flame-like forms pointing upwards to a semi-circular shape representing God.
Peace be with you! Receive the Holy Spirit!
(Our Gloria Dei video devotion for Pentecost can be found online here)