Soul Food Talk # 9 – The Holy Spirit and His Seven Gifts
[1 ]- Revelations by Christ on the Second Pentecost and Era of the Holy Spirit made to Concepcion Cabrera de Armida. affectionately known as Conchita. (Born December 1862 in Mexico. At 21 years, she married and had nine children. Manuel, one of her sons, became a Jesuit priest and Maria, her first daughter, entered the convent of the Sisters of the Cross (which Conchita herself founded). When she was 39 years old, her husband died and she had to care for her children, the youngest of whom was two years old. Her spiritual life started before the death of her husband.. Conchita’s religious writings and meditations total over 60,000 handwritten pages. In her writings she revealed a deep mysticism that rivals St. Catherine of Siena and St. Teresa of Avila. One of the missions entrusted to Conchita was to bring to the Church “The Spirituality of the Cross” which seeks to awaken the faithful to the inner sufferings Jesus endured while undergoing His Passion. The Spirituality of the Cross is a means that calls the People of God to share in the inner life of Jesus as Priest and Victim. Conchita died on March 3, 1937, at the age of 75. Pope John Paul II declared her venerable on December 20, 1999 and she is currently in the process of beatification.
Source: Conchita – A Mother’s Spiritual Diary, edited by Marie-Michel Philipon, o.p.)
[2 ]–ACTION OF THE HOLY SPIRIT IN SOULS & IN GRACE
“He is the source of divine grace and He never remains inactive. Day and night, He labors in souls who give themselves to Me, and these souls constantly advance in virtues. But when souls resist or are indifferent, then I withdraw since My graces are of too great a price to be wasted on them. The work of the Holy Spirit in souls is most delicate, and the soul who despises it is quite culpable… If it does not respond to My inspirations, to what I demand of it, I withdraw. There are some souls which it is necessary to push along at each step, others which run and fly. According to the measure of their correspondence with grace, they advance constantly rising to the degree I have destined for them. Be vigilant, hear My voice. You know quite well that for hearing me it is necessary to keep your ears open… A total renunciation of yourself and a constant spirit of sacrifice.
[3.] THE HOLY SPIRIT STAYS CLOSE TO SOULS
The Holy Spirit dwells in the very depths of the souls. “He remains with you and will be within you” (Jn 14:17). The whole Trinity dwells in us. “Anyone who loves me will be true to my word, and my Father will love him; we will come to him and make our dwelling place with him” (Jn 14:23). All the baptized who possess grace, are “temples of the of the Holy Spirit” (1 Cor 6:19).
[4.] “Some souls think that the Holy Spirit is very far away, far, far up above. Actually, He is, we might say, the divine Person who is most closely present to the creature. He accompanies him everywhere. He penetrates him with Himself, He calls him, He protects him. He makes of him His living temple. He defends him. He helps him. He guards him from all his enemies. He is closer to him than his own soul. All the good a soul accomplishes, it carries out under His inspiration, in His light, by His grace and His help. And yet He is not invoked, He is not thanked for His direct and intimate action in each soul. If you invoke the Father, if you love Him, it is through the Holy Spirit. If you love Me ardently, if you know Me, if you serve Me, if you imitate Me, if you make yourself but one with My wishes and with My heart, it is through the Holy Spirit.
[5.] “He is considered inaccessible and He actually is but there is nothing that exists nearer, more helpful to the creature in his misery than this Being of a supreme transcendence, this most Holy Spirit who reflects and who constitutes one and the same holiness with the Father and the Son. Centuries have passed and He remains ever the Principle of all things. He engraves His mark on souls and His sign on the priest. He communicates the light of faith and all the virtues. He irrigates and fertilizes the whole field of the Church. Despite this, He is not appreciated, He is not known, He is not thanked for His perpetually sanctifying action. If the world is ungrateful to Me, how much more so toward the Holy Spirit!
[6.] “Here is why I want His glory to be shown to the end of time… One of the cruelest interior sufferings for My Heart was this ingratitude of all times, this worship of idols of other times, and today man’s self-worship, forgetful of the Holy Spirit. In these latter days sensuality has set up its reign in the world. This sensual life obscures and extinguishes the light of faith in souls. That is why more than ever, it is necessary that the Holy Spirit come to destroy and annihilate Satan who under this form penetrates even the Church” (Diary, Jan. 26, 1915).
THE SOUL OF CHRIST MOVED BY THE HOLY SPIRIT
[7.] Christ is the masterpiece of the Holy Spirit. As Word, He is with the Father, His eternal Principle. The Holy Spirit received all from the Son: His Being in its infinite perfections. He is Love in a Person who proceeds indivisibly from the Father and from the Son in the Oneness of the Trinity. But, as man, Jesus has received all from the Holy Spirit: His incarnation, His being, His life, His action on all the members of His Mystical Body.
[8.] “Every movement of My soul has been inspired and carried out under the movement of the Holy Spirit. He is who animates My faculties, My senses, My will, holding them in His possession for the glory of the Father to whom I return everything… The Holy Spirit loves My humanity with an incomparable predilection… If you only know with what delicacy, with what tenderness, and with what splendor the Holy Spirit adorns My soul, My faculties, My feelings, My body and My heart! Even more than a mother He is all love. He displayed all His might, all His riches to form Me in Mary’s womb, as a perfect model of all that is beautiful, pure and holy. All the riches and treasures which adorn My Heart, I owe to the Holy Spirit. I do not like devotion to My Heart, to be regarded as an end, but only as a means of being raised up to My Divinity, as a step for reaching the Holy Spirit since it is He who created, formed and enriched My human heart, who poured on it all the delights of His love as well as all the interior sufferings and the manner of undergoing universal expiation for the pardon of culpable mankind. The heart of man and his body had sinned. There was need of another heart and another body united to the power of a God to give satisfaction to this Other who is God. This plan, this action, this salvific purpose, glorifying my humanity and for the salvation of the world, are owed to the Holy Spirit” (Diary, Jan. 29, 1915).
CATECHISM OF THE CATHOLIC CHURCH — SYMBOLS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
[9.]  Water. The symbolism of water signifies the Holy Spirit’s action in Baptism… our birth into the divine life given to us in the Holy Spirit. As “by one Spirit we were all baptized,” so we are also “made to drink of one Spirit… the living water welling up from Christ crucified28 as its source and welling up in us to eternal life.29
[10.] -695 Anointing. In Christian initiation, anointing is the sacramental sign of Confirmation. Its full force can be grasped only in relation to the primary anointing accomplished by the Holy Spirit, that of Jesus. Christ (in Hebrew “messiah”) means the one “anointed” by God’s Spirit. The Spirit filled Christ and the power of the Spirit went out from him in his acts of healing and of saving.34 Finally, it was the Spirit who raised Jesus from the dead.35 Now, fully established as “Christ” in his humanity victorious over death, Jesus pours out the Holy Spirit abundantly until “the saints” constitute – in their union with the humanity of the Son of God – that perfect man “to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ”:36 “the whole Christ,” in St. Augustine’s expression.
[11.] – 696 Fire symbolizes the transforming energy of the Holy Spirit’s actions– the fire of the Holy Spirit transforms what he touches. John the Baptist, who goes “before [the Lord] in the spirit and power of Elijah,”proclaims Christ as the one who “will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire.”38 In the form of tongues “as of fire,” the Holy Spirit rests on the disciples on the morning of Pentecost and fills them with himself.40
[12.] – 697 Cloud and light. These two images occur together in the manifestations of the Holy Spirit. In the theophanies of the Old Testament, the cloud, now obscure, now luminous, reveals the living and saving God, while veiling the transcendence of his glory – with Moses on Mount Sinai,43 at the tent of meeting,44 and during the wandering in the desert,45 and with Solomon at the dedication of the Temple.46 In the Holy Spirit, Christ fulfills these figures. The Spirit comes upon the Virgin Mary and “overshadows” her, so that she might conceive and give birth to Jesus.47 On the mountain of Transfiguration, the Spirit in the “cloud came and overshadowed” Jesus, Moses and Elijah, Peter, James and John, and “a voice came out of the cloud, saying, ‘This is my Son, my Chosen; listen to him!'”48 Finally, the cloud took Jesus out of the sight of the disciples on the day of his ascension and will reveal him as Son of man in glory on the day of his final coming.49
[13.] – 698 The seal is a symbol close to that of anointing. “The Father has set his seal” on Christ and also seals us in him.50
[14.] – 699 The hand. Jesus heals the sick and blesses little children by laying hands on them.51 In his name the apostles will do the same.52 Even more pointedly, it is by the Apostles’ imposition of hands that the Holy Spirit is given.53 The Letter to the Hebrews lists the imposition of hands among the “fundamental elements” of its teaching.54 The Church has kept this sign of the all-powerful outpouring of the Holy Spirit in its sacramental epicleses.
[15.] – 700 The finger. “It is by the finger of God that [Jesus] cast out demons.”55 If God’s law was written on tablets of stone “by the finger of God,” then the “letter from Christ” entrusted to the care of the apostles, is written “with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone, but on tablets of human hearts.”56 The hymn Veni Creator Spiritus invokes the Holy Spirit as the “finger of the Father’s right hand.”57
[16.] – 701 The dove. At the end of the flood, whose symbolism refers to Baptism, a dove released by Noah returns with a fresh olive-tree branch in its beak as a sign that the earth was again habitable.58 When Christ comes up from the water of his baptism, the Holy Spirit, in the form of a dove, comes down upon him and remains with him.59 The Spirit comes down and remains in the purified hearts of the baptized.
SOURCE: CATECHISM OF THE CATHOLIC CHURCH
[17.] – The Holy Spirit – God’s Gift 733 “God is Love”124 and love is his first gift, containing all others. “God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.”125
[18.] – 734 Because we are dead or at least wounded through sin, the first effect of the gift of love is the forgiveness of our sins. The communion of the Holy Spirit126 in the Church restores to the baptized the divine likeness lost through sin.
[19.] – 735 He, then, gives us the “pledge” or “first fruits” of our inheritance: the very life of the Holy Trinity, which is to love as “God [has] loved us.”127 This love (the “charity” of 1 Cor 13) is the source of the new life in Christ, made possible because we have received “power” from the Holy Spirit.128
[20.] – 736 By this power of the Spirit, God’s children can bear much fruit. He who has grafted us onto the true vine will make us bear “the fruit of the Spirit: . . . love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control.”129 “We live by the Spirit”; the more we renounce ourselves, the more we “walk by the Spirit.”130
[21.] – The Holy Spirit and the Church 737 The mission of Christ and the Holy Spirit is brought to completion in the Church, which is the Body of Christ and the Temple of the Holy Spirit. This joint mission henceforth brings Christ’s faithful to share in his communion with the Father in the Holy Spirit. The Spirit prepares men and goes out to them with his grace, in order to draw them to Christ. The Spirit manifests the risen Lord to them, recalls his word to them and opens their minds to the understanding of his Death and Resurrection. He makes present the mystery of Christ, supremely in the Eucharist, in order to reconcile them, to bring them into communion with God, that they may “bear much fruit.”132
[22.] – 739 Because the Holy Spirit is the anointing of Christ, it is Christ who, as the head of the Body, pours out the Spirit among his members [through the sacraments] to nourish, heal, and organize them in their mutual functions, to give them life, send them to bear witness, and associate them to his self-offering to the Father and to his intercession for the whole world.
The illustration given here shows somewhat the nature of the Gifts of the Holy Spirit, according to St. Thomas Aquinas:
[Note: Several of the talks and sharings came from this wonderful pamphlet below.]
SOURCE: THE GIFTS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT According to St. Thomas Aquinas, by Father Peter John Cameron, O.P. published by the Knights of Columbus, 2002. See the website for the full, printable pamphlet: http://www.kofc.org/un/en/resources/cis/cis360.pdf