Why did the Holy Spirit cleanse Jesus?






687 "No one knows God - only the Spirit of God" (1 Cor 2:11). The Spirit who reveals God makes us know Christ, his living Word, but he does not speak of himself. He who “spoke through the prophets "lets us hear the father's word. But we do not hear him himself. We only recognize him in the fact that he reveals the word to us and makes us ready to accept it in faith. The Spirit of Truth, who "reveals" Christ to us, does not speak "of itself" (Jn 16:13). This truly divine reserve explains why "the world cannot receive him because it neither sees nor knows him", while those who believe in Christ know him because he remains with them (Jn 14:17).

688 As a living community of faith that transmits the faith of the apostles, the church is the place of our knowledge of the Holy Spirit:
- in the writings inspired by him;
- in tradition, of which the Church Fathers are always up-to-date witnesses;
- in the Magisterium of the Church, which he assists;
- in the sacramental liturgy: through its words and symbols, in which the Holy Spirit unites us with Christ;
- in prayer in which he intercedes for us;
- in the charisms and ministries through which the Church is built;
- in apostolic and missionary life;
- in the testimony of the saints, in which he declares his holiness and continues the work of salvation.

I. The common mission of the Son and the Spirit

689 The Spirit of the Son [cf. Gal 4: 6], whom the Father has sent into our hearts, is really God. With the Father and the Son of one being, he cannot be separated from them either in the inner life of the Trinity or as a gift of love for the world. The Church worships the quickening, identical and inseparable Most Holy Trinity; but their faith also confesses that people are different from one another. When the Father sends his word, he always sends his breath too - it is a common mission in which the Son and the Holy Spirit are distinguished from one another, but cannot be separated from one another. Christ appears, the visible image of the invisible God, but it is the Holy Spirit who reveals him.

690 Jesus is the Christ, the "anointed", because the Spirit is his anointing and everything that happens from the Incarnation flows out of this fullness [cf. Joh 3:34]. And when in the end Christ is glorified [cf. Joh 7,3], he can send the Spirit from the Father to those who believe in him: The Son communicates his glory to them [cf. Joh 17:22], that is, the Holy Spirit who glorifies him [cf. Joh From then on, the common mission unfolds in those whom the Father has accepted as his children in the mystical body of his Son.The spirit of sonship has the mission to unite them with Christ and to let them live in him.

“The term 'anointing' indicates ... that there is no distance between the Son and the Spirit. Just as neither reason nor the senses perceive any intermediate thing between the surface of the body and the applied oil, so the contact of the son with the spirit is so direct that whoever wants to come into contact with the son through faith starts with the oil comes into contact. For there is no part of him that is not covered by the Holy Spirit. That is why the confession of the Lord's being of the Son takes place in the Holy Spirit, since the Spirit comes from everywhere to meet those who see in faith approach "(Gregory v. Nyssa, Spir. 16).

II. Name, designations and symbols of the Holy Spirit

The name of the Holy Spirit 

691 "Holy Spirit" is the name of him whom we worship and glorify with the Father and the Son. The Church has taken this name from the Lord and pronounces it at the baptism of her new children [cf. Mt 28:19].

The expression "spirit" reproduces the Hebrew word "ruach", which initially means breath, air, wind. Jesus uses the impressive image of the wind in order to let Nicodemus feel the completely new of him who is the breath of God, the divine spirit in person [cf. Jn 3: 5-8] On the other hand, "spirit" and "holy" are divine qualities which are common to the three divine Persons. Scripture, liturgy, and the language of theology combine the two terms to denote the non-verbal person of the Holy Spirit, without any possible confusion with the other uses of the terms "spirit" and "holy".

The names of the Holy Spirit

692 When Jesus announces and promises the coming of the Holy Spirit, he calls him "Paraclete", literally: "ad-vocatus", the "called one" [Joh 14,16,26; 15,26; 16,7]. "Paraclete" becomes for usually rendered as "comforter" or "supporter", but Jesus is the first supporter [cf. 1 Jn 2: 1]. The Lord himself calls the Holy Spirit "Spirit of truth" (Jn 16:13).

693 In addition to the name most commonly used in the Acts of the Apostles and in the Epistles, St. Paul used the designations: the "spirit of promise" (Gal 3:14; Eph 1:13); the "spirit of sonship" (Rom 8:15; Gal 4,6); the "Spirit of Christ" (Rom 8:11); the "Spirit of the Lord" (2 Cor 3:17); the "Spirit of God" [Rom 8.9.14; 15.19; 1 Cor 6.11; 7.40], and with St. Peter "the spirit of glory" (1 Pet 4.14).

The symbols of the Holy Spirit

694The water. At baptism the water is a symbol of the work of the Holy Spirit, because after the invocation of the Holy Spirit it becomes an effective sacramental sign of regeneration. Just as we grew towards our first birth in the amniotic fluid, the baptismal water is a sign that our birth to divine life is given to us in the Holy Spirit. "In one Spirit baptized "we are also" watered with the one Spirit "(1 Cor 12:13). The spirit in person is therefore the living water that gushes out of the crucified Christ [cf. John 19:34; 1 Jn 5: 8] and gives us eternal life [cf. Job 4: 10-14; 7.38; Ex 17.1-6; Isa 55,1; Sach 14.8; 1 Cor 10.4; Orfb 21.6; 22.17]

695The anointing. The anointing with [cf. 1 John 2:20, 27; 2 Cor 1:21] so much that it becomes a synonym for him [cf. Ex 30: 22-32]. In Christian initiation it is the sacramental sign of Confirmation, which is why it is called "Chrismation" in the Eastern Churches. However, in order to grasp the full significance of this symbol, one must return to the first anointing performed by the Holy Spirit: the anointing Jesus. "Christ" [translation of the Hebrew word "Messiah"] means the one "anointed" with the Spirit of God. Already in the old covenant there were "anointed ones" of the Lord [cf. 1 Sam 16:13]; above all David was an anointed one, but Jesus is the one uniquely anointed by God: the human nature that the Son accepts is entirely "of the holy Ghost ". Jesus becomes "Christ" through the Holy Spirit [cf. Lk 4,18-19; Isa 61,1]. The Virgin Mary receives Christ through the Holy Spirit, who announces him as Christ through the angel already at his birth [cf. Lk 2:11] and leads Simeon into the temple so that he may see the Lord's anointed [cf. Lk 2:26-27]. It is he who fulfills Christ [cf. Lk 4: 1] and his power proceeds from Christ when he accomplishes healings and salvific deeds [cf. Lk 6:19; 8:46] It is finally he who raises Jesus from the dead [cf. Rom 1,4; 8:11] , The victor over death [cf. Acts 2,36] has become fully "Christ", Jesus donates the Holy Spirit in abundance until "the saints" in their union with the human nature of the Son of God become "perfect Men "and" represent Christ in his perfect form "(Eph 4:13): the" whole Christ ", as St. Augustine says.

696The fire. While the water symbolizes the birth and the fertility of the life given in the Holy Spirit, the fire symbolizes the transforming power of the actions of the Holy Spirit. The prophet Elijah, who “rose like fire and his word like a flaming furnace [cf. 2 Cor 1.22; Eph 1,13; 4,30] (Sir 48,1), draws fire down from heaven through his prayer for the sacrifice from Mount Carmel [cf. 1 Kings 18: 38-39] - symbol of the fire of the Holy Spirit, who transforms what he grasps. John the Baptist, who "goes before the Lord with the Spirit and with the power of Elijah" (Lk 1:17), announces Christ as the one who "baptizes with the Holy Spirit and fire" (Lk 3:16). Of this Spirit Jesus will say: “I came to throw fire on the earth. How glad I would be if it was already burning "(Lk 12:49). In" tongues as of fire "the Holy Spirit comes down on the disciples on the morning of Pentecost and fulfills them (Acts 2: 3-4). In the spiritual tradition, this symbolism of fire remains one of the most expressive symbols of the work of the Holy Spirit [cf. John of the Cross, Ilama]. "Do not extinguish the spirit!" (1 Thess 5:19).

697The cloud and the Lieht. These two symbols are always present together when the Holy Spirit appears. Already in the Theophania of the Old Testament the cloud, now dark and now light, reveals the living, saving God by concealing his supernatural glory. So with Moses on Mount Sinai [cf. Ex 24.15-18], in the tent of revelation [cf. Ex 33,9-10] and during the passage through the desert [cf. Ex 40,36-38; 1 Cor 10.1-2]; at Solomon at the temple consecration [cf. 1 Kings 8: 10-12]. These images were fulfilled through Christ in the Holy Spirit. The Spirit comes down on the Virgin Mary and "overshadows" her so that she may receive and give birth to Jesus (Lk 1:35). On the Mount of Transfiguration he comes in a cloud, "casts a shadow" over Jesus, Moses and Elijah, Peter, James and John, and "a voice from the cloud calls out: This is my chosen son, you must listen to him" (Lk 9: 34-35). The same "cloud" finally hides Jesus from view on the day of Ascension the disciple (Acts 1,9); on the day of his coming she will reveal him as the Son of Man in his glory. Lk 21:27].

698The seal is a symbol that is close to that of the anointing. It is Christ whom "the Father has authenticated with his seal" (Jn 6:27), and in him the Father also impresses his seal on us .1 Because the image of the seal [Greek "sphragis" in the sacraments of baptism, of Confirmation and Consecration suggests the indelible effect of the anointing of the Holy Spirit, it has been used in some theological traditions to express the indelible character, the mark, which these three unrepeatable sacraments imprint.

699The hand. Jesus heals the sick [cf. Mk 6,5; 8,23] and blesses small children [cf. Mk 10:16] by laying his hands on them. In his name the apostles do the same. Mk 16.18; Acts 5.12; 14.3]. It is through the laying on of the hands of the apostles that the Holy Spirit is bestowed. Acts 8: 17-19; 13.3; 19.6]. The Epistle to the Hebrews counts the laying on of hands among the "basic elements" of its teaching [cf. Heb 6: 2]. In its sacramental epics, the Church has preserved this sign of the all-powerful outpouring of the Holy Spirit.

700The finger. "By the finger of God" Jesus casts out demons (Lk 11:20). While the law of God was written by the "finger of God" on stone tablets (Ex 31:18), the "Letter of Christ" written by the apostles is ... . Written ... with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets made of stone, but - as on tablets in hearts of flesh "(2 Cor 3: 3). The hymn" Veni, Creator Spiritus "invokes the Holy Spirit as the "finger of the father's right hand".

701The Dove. At the end of the flood (which is a symbol of baptism) the dove that Noah had let out of the ark returned with a fresh olive branch in its beak as a sign that the earth was habitable again. Heb 6,2]. When Christ rises from the water of his baptism, the Holy Spirit descends on him like a dove and rests on him. Mt 3,16 pure]. The Spirit descends and rests in the cleansed heart of the baptized. In some churches the Holy Eucharist is kept in a dove-shaped metal container [columbarium] that is hung above the altar. In Christian iconography, the dove has always been a symbol of the Holy Spirit.

III. The Spirit and the Word of God in the time of promises

702 The common mission of the Word and the Spirit of the Father remains until the "fullness of time" (Gal 4,4) hidden, but is at work right from the start. The Spirit of God prepares for the Messiah. Without being fully revealed, both are already promised to be awaited and received when they appear. Therefore research [cf. Jn 5:39, 46] the Church when she reads the Old Testament [cf. 2 Cor 3:14], according to what the Spirit "who spoke through the prophets" wants to say to us about Christ.

The faith of the Church here understands "prophets" as those whom the Holy Spirit inspired in the writing of the Holy Books of the Old and New Testaments. Jewish tradition distinguishes the law (the first five books, the so-called Pentateuch), the prophets (our so-called historical and prophetic books) and the scriptures (especially the books of wisdom and especially the psalms) [cf. Lk 22:44].

In creation

703 The being and life of every creature emerges from the word and the breath of God [cf. Ps 33.6; 104.30; Gen 1.2; 2.7; Koh 3.20-21; Lz 37.10].

“It is up to the Holy Spirit to rule, to sanctify and to animate creation, because he is of the same nature as God the Father and the Son ... He has power over life, because, being God, he preserves Creation through the Son in the Father "(Byzantine Liturgy, Tropar of Metten on Sundays of the second tone).

704 "God formed man with his own hands [that is, with the Son and the Holy Spirit] ... and he imprinted his own shape on the formed flesh, so that even the visible would bear the divine shape" (Irenaeus, dem. 11) .

The spirit of promise

705 Though defaced by sin and death, man remains "in the image of God", made in the image of the Son, but he has "lost the glory of God" (Rom 3:23), is deprived of "resemblance" to him With the promise that was made to Abraham, the economy of salvation begins, at the end of which the son himself "accepts the image" [cf. John 1:14; Phil 2: 7] and restores it in its "likeness" to the Father by restoring to him the glory, the Spirit "that gives life".

706 Contrary to all human hope, God promises Abraham to have offspring as the fruit of faith and the power of the Holy Spirit1. In her all peoples of the earth are blessed [cf. Gen12.3]. This offspring is Christ [cf. GuI 3,16], in which the outpouring of the Holy Spirit gathers the scattered children of God again [cf. Jn 11:52]. By an oath [cf. Lk 1,73] is committed to God, his beloved Son [cf. Gen 22: 17-19; Romans 8:32; Jn 3:16] and to give the "spirit of promise" which is "the first part of the inheritance" which we are to receive: the redemption through which we become God's property "(Eph 1: 13-14) [cf. Gal 3:14].

The Theophania and the Law 

707 The theophanes [appearances of God] illuminate the path of promise, from the patriarchs through Moses and Joshua to the visions that open the mission of the great prophets. Christian tradition has always assumed that in these theophania the word of God could be seen and heard in the cloud of the Holy Spirit, both manifest and "shadowy".

708 This divine pedagogy is particularly evident in the gift of the law [cf. Ex 19-20; Dtn - 1-11; 29-30]. The letter of the law was given, as it were, as a "disciplinarian" in order to bring the people to Christ (Gal 3:24). However, since the law cannot save people who have been deprived of their "resemblance" to God and makes sin more clearly recognizable [cf. Rom 3:20], the desire for the Holy Spirit is awakened, as the lamentations of the Psalms testify.

At the time of kings and in exile

709 As a sign of promise and the covenant, the law should have determined the hearts and institutions of the people born of the faith of Abraham. "If you listen to my voice and keep my covenant, ... you shall belong to me as a kingdom of priests and as a holy people" (Ex 19: 5-6) [cf. 1 Pet 2,9]. According to David but the people succumb to the temptation to establish a kingdom like the other nations, but the kingdom promised to David [cf. 2 Sam 7; Ps 89; Lk 1,32-33] will be the work of the Holy Spirit; Belong to the poor in spirit.

710 Disregard of the law and unfaithfulness to the covenant lead to death. There is exile; the promises are seemingly shattered. In reality it shows the mysterious loyalty of the Savior God, and with it begins a promised - but spiritually appropriate - restoration. It was necessary for the people of God to undergo this purification. Lk 24.26]. According to God's plan, exile is already under the shadow of the cross, and the "holy remnants" that return is one of the clearest images of the Church.

The expectation of the Messiah and his Spirit

711 "Look, now I am doing something new" (Isa. 43:19). Two prophetic lines are emerging: one in the direction of the Messiah expectation, the other in the direction of the announcement of a new spirit. Both run towards the little remainder, the people of the poor, to [cf. Zef 2,3], who hopefully awaits the "consolation of Israel" and the "liberation of Jerusalem".

Above it was shown how the prophecies concerning him are fulfilled in Jesus. Here we limit ourselves to those in which the relationship between the Messiah and his Spirit is more evident.

712 In the chapters on Immanuel [cf. Isa 6-12] ('when Isaiah saw Jesus' glory ": Jn 12.41), especially in Isa 11: 1-2, the characteristics of the expected Messiah begin to appear:

"Rice grows out of the stump of Jesse,
a young shoot from its roots bears fruit.
The Spirit of the Lord rests on him:
the spirit of wisdom and insight,
the spirit of advice and strength,
the spirit of knowledge and the fear of God. "

713 The features of the Messiah are revealed above all in the songs of the Servant of God [cf. Isa 42: 1-9; Mt 12: 18-21; Joh 1,32-34; then Isa 49: 1-6; Mt 3,17; Lk 2.32; finally Isa 50,4-10 and 52,13-53,12.]. These songs predict the meaning of the Passion of Jesus and thus indicate the way in which he will give the Holy Spirit to bring the many to life: not from without, but by making himself our "servant" (Phil 2: 7). Because he accepts our death, he can pass on to us his spirit of life.

714 That is why Christ opens the proclamation of the good news by referring to the following passage from Isaiah (61: 1-2) (Lk 4.18-19):

The Spirit of the Lord rests on me;
for the Lord has anointed me.
He sent me
so that I may bring good news to the poor;
so that I can announce my release to the prisoners
and eyesight to the blind;
so that I may set the broken free
and proclaim a year of grace from the Lord.

715 The prophetic texts, which directly concern the sending of the Holy Spirit, are prophecies in which God speaks to the heart of his people in the language of promises, in the tone of "love and faithfulness" [cf. Ez 11:19; 36: 25-28 ; 37,1-14; Jer 31,31-34 and Joël 3,1-5; St. Peter will say of the last-named passage that it was fulfilled on the morning of Pentecost:]. According to these promises the Spirit of the Lord in in the "last days" renew people's hearts by impressing a new law on them. He will gather the divided and divided peoples together and reconcile them to one another; he will transform the first creation, and God will live in it with men in peace.

716 In the people of the poor [cf. Acts 2:17], humble and gentle people who rely entirely on the mysterious plans of their God and expect justice, not from men but from the Messiah, the Holy Spirit is mighty in his hidden mission during the time of the promises at work to prepare for the coming of Christ. Their honest hearts, purified and enlightened by the Spirit, are expressed in the Psalms. In these arms the Spirit prepares a "willing people" for the Lord [cf. e.g. Zef 2,3; Ps 22,27; 34,3; Isa 49,13; 61,1].

IV. The Spirit of Christ in the fullness of time

John - forerunner, prophet and Baptist

717 “A man appeared who was sent by God; his name was John "(Jn 1,6). John was" already filled with the Holy Spirit in the womb "(Lk 1,15) [cf. Lk 1,17.-4 Cf. Lk 1,41.], Through Christ himself, whom the Virgin Mary had recently received through the Holy Spirit. In Mary's “visit” to Elizabeth, God himself “visited his people” (Lk 1.68).

718 John is the "Elijah" who is to come (Mt 17: 10-13). The fire of the Holy Spirit glows in him and lets him precede the Lord who is coming as a "forerunner". In John the forerunner, the Holy Spirit completes his work of "making the people ready for the Lord" (Lk 1:17).

719 John is "more than a prophet" (Lk 7:26). In him the Holy Spirit completes his "speaking through the prophets". John is the last in the series of prophets, who begin with Elijah. Mt 11: 13-14]. He announces that the comfort of Israel is at hand; he is the "voice" of the coming Comforter (Jn 1:23) [cf. Isa 40: 1-3]. As the spirit of truth will do, he comes "as a witness to bear witness to the light" ( Joh 1,7) [cf. John 15:26; 5.33]. Thus, under the eyes of John, the Spirit fulfills what the prophets sought and the angels asked for [cf. 1 Pet 1: 10-12]: “On whom you see the Spirit coming down and on whom it abides, it is he who baptizes with the Holy Spirit. I have seen this and I testify: 'He is the Son of God ... Look, the Lamb of God!' "(Jn 1,33-36).

720 With John the Baptist, the Holy Spirit opens the work that he will do with and in Christ by foreshadowing it: the restoration of the "likeness" of God in man. John's baptism was a baptism of penance; the baptism in water and in the holy Spirit will bring about a new birth [cf. Jn 3: 5].

"Rejoice, you gracious one!"

721 Mary, the holy, always virgin Mother of God is the crowning glory of the mission of the Son and the Spirit in the fullness of time. Because the Spirit has prepared them, the Father finds them for the first time after his salvation counsel flatin which his Son and Spirit can abide among people. In this sense the tradition of the Church has the most beautiful texts on wisdom. Prov 8: 1-9: 6; Sir 24.] often referred to Mary. Mary is sung about and represented in the liturgy as the "throne of wisdom".

In it begin the "great deeds" of God which the Spirit will perform in Christ and in the Church:

722 The Holy Spirit has Mary by grace prepared. It is fitting that the mother of him in whom "the fulness of the divinity dwells bodily" (Col 2: 9) should be "full of grace". Out of pure grace, as the most humble creature, most capable of receiving the unspeakable gift of the Almighty, she was received without sin. The angel Gabriel rightly greets her as the "Daughter of Zion" with "Rejoice!" [See. Zef 3.14; Zech 2:14]. When she bears the Eternal Son in her, she lets the thanksgiving of the whole People of God and thus of the Church rise up in her hymn of praise to the Father in the Holy Spirit [cf. Zef 3.14; Zech 2:14].

723 In Maria realized the Holy Spirit the gracious counsel of the Father. With and through the Holy Spirit, the Virgin Mary conceives and gives birth to the Son of God. Through the power of the spirit and faith, her virginity becomes uniquely fruitful. Lk 1.26-38; Romans 4: 18-21; Gal 4,26-28].

724 In Maria disclosed the Holy Spirit the Son of the Father, who has now also become the Son of the Virgin. She is the burning bush of the final theophany. Filled with the Holy Spirit, she shows the Word in the humility of his flesh and gives it to the poor. Lk 2,15-19] and the first representatives of the peoples [cf. Mt 2:11].

725 Finally the Holy Spirit begins through Mary, the people to whom "the merciful love of God" [cf. Lk 1.78] applies, to bring into fellowship with Christ. The humble people are always the first to receive him: the shepherds, the wise men, Simeon and Hannah, the bride and groom of Cana and the first disciples.

726 At the end of this sending of the Spirit, Mary becomes a "woman," the new Eve, "the mother of the living," the mother of "the whole of Christ" [cf. Job 19: 25-27]. As such, she is with the twelve "Unanimous in prayer" (Acts 1:14), present when the Spirit lets the "last times" begin on Pentecost morning with the revelation of the Church.

Jesus the christ

727 The whole mission of the Son and the Holy Spirit in the fullness of time is contained in the fact that the Son has been the one anointed with the Spirit of the Father since his incarnation: Jesus is the Christ, the Messiah.

The entire second chapter of the Creed is to be read in that light. All of Christ's work is the common mission of the Son and the Holy Spirit. Only what is mentioned here pertaining to the promise of the Holy Spirit through Jesus and his dispensation through the glorified Lord.

728 Unless Jesus himself is glorified through his death and resurrection, he does not fully reveal the Holy Spirit. However, even in his doctrine to the multitude, he gradually alludes to him when he reveals that his flesh will become food for the life of the world. Joh 6,27,51,62-63]. He also interprets his work to Nicodemus [cf. Joh 3,5-8], the Samaritan woman [cf. Job 4,10.14.23-24] and the participants in the Feast of Tabernacles [cf. Jn 7: 37-39]. In connection with prayer [cf. Lk 11:13] and the testimony that they will have to bear [cf. Mt 10: 19-20], he speaks openly of the Holy Spirit to his disciples.

729 Only when the hour of his glorification has come promises Jesus the coming of the Holy Spirit, for in his death and resurrection the promise made to the fathers will be fulfilled [cf. Joh 14: 16-17.26; 15.26; 16.7-15; 17.26]: The Spirit of Truth, the other Paraclete, will be given by the Father at the prayer of Jesus; he will be sent from the Father in the name of Jesus; Jesus will send him from the Father because he came out from the Father. The Holy Spirit will come; we will recognize him; he will be with us forever. He will teach us and remind us of everything Christ told us and bear testimony of him; he will lead us towards the whole truth and glorify Christ. He will convict the world of sin, righteousness and judgment.

730 His hour now comes for Jesus [cf. John 13: 1; 17: 1]: When he conquers death by his death, he hands over his spirit into the hands of the father [cf. Lk 23.46; John 19:30]. And when he was "raised from the dead by the glory of the Father" (Rom. 6: 4), donates he at once the spirit by breathing on his disciples [cf. Jn 20:22]. From this hour on, the mission of Christ and the Spirit becomes the mission of the Church: "As the Father sent me, so I send you" (Jn 20:21) [cf. Mt 28:19; Lk 24: 47-48; Acts 1,8].

V. The Spirit and the Church in the Last Times


731 On the day of Pentecost (at the end of the seven weeks of Easter) the Passover of Christ is completed in the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. This is revealed, given and communicated as a divine person. Christ the Lord gives the Spirit in abundance [cf. Acts 2,33].

732 On this day the Most Holy Trinity will be fully revealed. Since that day the kingdom announced by Christ has been open to all who believe in him. Although people of flesh and blood, they already share in the fellowship of the Most Holy Trinity by faith. Through his incessant coming, the Holy Spirit lets the world enter the "last times", the time of the Church: the kingdom of God has already been received as an inheritance, but is not yet completed.

“We have seen the true light, we have received the heavenly spirit, we have found the true faith. We adore the indivisible Trinity because it has saved us "(Byzantine liturgy, Tropar of Pentecost; adopted as a chant after communion in the celebration of the Eucharist).

The Holy Spirit - the gift of God

733 "God is love" (1 Jn 4: 8.16), and love is the first gift; it contains all other gifts. God has "poured out this love into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us" (Rom. 5 , 5).

734 Because we are dead, or at least wounded, by sin, the first effect of love is the forgiveness of our sins. The "communion of the Holy Spirit" (2 Cor 13:13) gives the baptized in the Church back the similarity with God that has been lost through sin.

735 God gives us the "deposit", the "down payment" for our inheritance [cf. Rom 8:23; 2 Cor 1:21]: the life of the Most Holy Trinity, which consists in loving as he loved us [cf. 1 Job 4.11-12]. This love [cf. 1 Cor 13] is the principle of the new life in Christ, which has become possible because we have "received the power of the Holy Spirit" (Acts 1: 8).

736 By virtue of this power of the Spirit, the children of God can bear fruit. He who grafted us on to the true vine will make us bear "the fruit of the Spirit": "love, joy, peace, long-suffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control" (Gal 5: 22-23). The spirit is our life; the more we lose our own life [cf. Mt 16: 24-26], the more we will "also follow the Spirit" (Gal 5:25).

“The Holy Spirit transports you back to Paradise; leads to the kingdom of heaven and to adoption as a child; lets call God Father with confidence and share in the grace of Christ, be called the child of light and share in eternal glory "(Basilius, Spir. 15:36).

The Holy Spirit and the Church

737 The mission of Christ and the Holy Spirit is carried out in the Church, the body of Christ and the temple of the Holy Spirit. This common mission takes believers into the communion of Christ with his Father in the Holy Spirit. The ghost makes people ready and precede them with his grace to draw them to Christ. He disclosed to them the risen Lord, she reminds them of his word and opens their minds to the meaning of his death and resurrection. He envisioned to them the mystery of Christ, especially in the Eucharist, in order to reconcile them to God, to him unite and thus to bring "rich fruit" (Joh 15,5.8) [cf. Job 15,16].

738 The mission of the Church does not therefore add to the mission of Christ and the Holy Spirit, but is their sacrament. In her whole being and in all her members, the Church is sent to proclaim and to witness, to present and to expand ever more the mystery of the communion of the Most Holy Trinity (this will be the subject of the next article).

“All of us who have received one and the same Spirit, the Holy Spirit, are merged with one another and with God. Although we are individually many and Christ lets his and the Father's spirit dwell in each of us, this one, indivisible spirit leads those who are different from one another to a unity through itself ... and makes that in him all form one and the same, as it were. And just as the power of the holy human nature of Christ causes all in whom it is found to form a single body, so in my opinion the one, indivisible Spirit of God who dwells in all leads all to spiritual unity "(Cyril v. Alexandria, Jo.11.11).

739 Because the Holy Spirit is the anointing of Christ, Christ, the head of the body, gives him to his members in order to nourish them, to heal them, to coordinate their mutual functions, to enliven them, to give testimony to his devotion to him Father and his intercession for the whole world to participate. Through the sacraments of the Church, Christ communicates his sanctifying Holy Spirit to the members of his body (this will be the subject of the second part of the Catechism).

740 These "great works of God" offered to the faithful in the sacraments of the Church bear fruit in the new life in Christ corresponding to the Spirit (subject of the third part of the Catechism).

741 “This is how the spirit takes care of our weakness. For we do not know what to rightly pray for; however, the Spirit himself intervenes for us with sighs that we cannot put into words "(Rom 8:26). The Holy Spirit, who works the works of God, is the teacher of prayer (subject of the fourth part of the Catechism).


742 "Because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, the Spirit that cries:" Abba, Father "(Gal 4: 6).

743 When God sends his Son, he always sends his Spirit from the beginning to the end of time; their broadcasts are connected, they cannot be separated.

744 When the "fullness of time" came, the Holy Spirit completed all the preparations for the coming of Christ that he had made among the people of God in Mary. Through the action of the Holy Spirit, the Father in Mary gave the world Immanuel, the "God with us "(Mt 1:23).

745 The Son of God is consecrated to Christ [Messiah] at his incarnation through the anointing with the Holy Spirit [cf. Ps 2,6-7].

746 Through his death and resurrection, Jesus becomes "Lord and Messiah" in glory (Acts 2:36).From his fullness he pours out the Holy Spirit on the apostles and the Church.

747 The Holy Spirit, whom Christ, the Head, lets flow into his members, builds up, animates and sanctifies the Church. This is the sacrament of communion between the Most Holy Trinity and human beings.