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September 2006 

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Under the breath of the Pentecost



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Under the breath of the Pentecost.
" It is good for you that I go away, because if I don't, the Comforter will not come to you"
(John 16, 7). 
These words attributed to Jesus by John reflect well how the disciples had lived. What an ordeal for them the death of Jesus was, and more so in such shameful circumstances! However, after some time, they realized that Jesus' death was not the end but that he was staying present amongst them, still alive. Then, progressively, they dropped those years of close proximity with him, giving this daily familiarity up. This is the meaning of the Ascension. They were at last ready to greet the Christ of the Resurrection and to make a new start.

For us and for all Christians, everywhere, it is good that Jesus is no longer among us. When he was physically present, he was enclosed in a given time, limited to the space he could walk. He was limited to a culture, a way of thinking, and a language with its stereotype expressions. We would be more tempted to copy Jesus, to just imitate his behaviour.

diversité Becoming the managers of his Tradition, that is what he had delivered by his teaching and his way of living, the Christians, at different times and cultures are called upon to incarnate the Good News of Jesus in a diversity of surroundings. What an extraordinary creative mission it is, keeping fidelity to his message and being present to the world of today. Under the breath of the Holy Spirit, the message of the Beatitudes is called upon to be applied in the conditions of our own time, in the diversity of our cultures and civilisations. And that happens not only under the actions of the Christians, but also through the actions of the agnostics or the believers of other religions who work together to promote a world more human. 
Expressing his own experience as well the one of those who walked with Jesus, John can add:" When the Comforter will be there (it was so hard for them to get over his departure), he will lead you towards the whole truth". Only the breath of the Spirit of Jesus can endlessly make us discover, enlarge and deepen the meaning of this truth.
Spirit of truth, Spirit of holiness, he can only be seen now through the way the Christians believe and live in their actual life. It is a huge responsibility that they have, although keeping confidence and serenity. This is because of this word of Jesus transmitted by John: "In verity I tell you, those who believe in me, will also do the work that I do, they will even do greater one" (John, 14, 12)