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The Work of the Holy Spirit in the Church and in the World
The subject of this article on "The Work of the Holy Spirit in the Church and in the World" is an ocean. We might even say that all of Christianity is summarized in this one statement. Our focus will be on our duty to respond to the unique grace that the Holy Spirit conferred on us when we received the Sacrament of Confirmation.
The Annunciation
It is not without deep reason that St. Luke is called the "Evangelist of the Holy Spirit." When Our Lady asked the angel at the Annunciation how she was to conceive a son since she was vowed to virginity, the angel assured her that, "the Holy Spirit shall come upon thee and the power of the Most High shall overshadow thee."
Gift of Counsel
And our Lord had the Gift of the Holy Spirit. From His graces, that's what St. John tells us, we have all received. We said that wisdom is the highest of the gifts and Fear of the Lord is the lowest, but the most basic. Unless we're talking, we're talking about the Fear of the Lord, but if you have Fear of the Lord, you will not have or practice the other gifts. Now, what is the Gift of Counsel? I keep using the verb, perfects.
Gift of Fortitude
So the "Gift of Fortitude", first of all, implies, that doing the will of God is not easy. We need help from the God who tells us what His will is, to do His will. Again, the Gift of Fortitude implies that there are obstacles to doing God’s will.  I’ve got six obstacles, this is my way of preparation.
The Holy Spirit Sustains the Virtue of Hope
First, we ask ourselves what is the virtue of hope; then, why does the virtue of hope need to be specially sustained in our day; and finally, how are we to assure ourselves of the help of the Holy Spirit to remain hopeful as Catholics and as consecrated persons in the most devastating century of Christian history?
The Holy Spirit as Power
We speak of the Holy Spirit in many different ways: as Love, as Gift, as the Paraclete, as the Advocate. All of these titles are biblical and identify some of the profound attributes of the Spirit promised by Christ before his Ascension into Heaven. But there is one that we especially need to recognize today and that is the Spirit as Power. What does this Spirit as Power really mean? Let us analyze it in the Gifts of the Holy Spirit which pertain to the will.
Mission of the Holy Spirit
As Catholics, we believe that the Second Person of the Holy Trinity was sent into the world to redeem the human race and restore our friendship with God. But we also believe that the Third Person of the Holy Trinity was sent by Christ on Pentecost Sunday to sanctify the world which He had redeemed by His blood.
The Holy Spirit and Community Life
My plan for the conference is first, to read the verses from the Acts of the Apostles in which St. Luke describes what happened at Pentecost in the actual Descent of the Holy Spirit, and then immediately after Peter's sermon where he himself was inspired by the Spirit, how that same Spirit affected and began to shape the first converts. Then having read the passages we shall reflect separately on the prominent features of what the Holy Spirit does when he descends on the faithful.
The Catholic Church and the Communion of Saints
The ninth article of the Creed proposes our faith in the second great work of the Holy Spirit after the Incarnation. It is by His power that the Church came into being on Calvary. It is by His power that the Church continues to sanctify a sinful human race. And it is by His power that we hope to enter the Church Triumphant in heaven after having struggled successfully in the Church Militant on earth.
The Virtue of Faith
Our reflections during this retreat are on the Holy Spirit. What I wish to concentrate on during the less than two days that we have is what the Holy Spirit has given us. And, in the teaching of the Catholic Church there are three blessings, supernatural blessings, which the Holy Spirit has given to us. The Holy Spirit has given us the virtues, called theological virtues, of faith, hope, and charity. The virtues are the powers we received.
Our Natural Knowledge of God
Our first theme in the retreat is the knowledge of God. There will be two conferences on our knowledge of God: the present one on our natural knowledge of God, and the following conference on our revealed knowledge of God. And as we begin our first conference let us make sure we do not underestimate the importance of knowing the true God. It was Christ Himself who declared, "Remember this," speaking to His Father, "this is eternal life that they may know, (hear the verb), that they may know you the one true God and the only begotten Son whom you have sent into the world."

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