May 04, 2009


By Rusty Montgomery *

May the Lord give you His peace!

Anyone have the flu? I pray that you don’t. This outbreak of the flu virus has our nation and world on edge. I pray that the virus is contained and that any who have been affected find healing and peace.

A few weeks ago I had the honor of being a confirmation sponsor of a little man that I have known for quite some time. It was a blessing and joy to stand and witness the Holy Spirit coming upon many young members of the Church. As the 70 men and women were getting confirmed, I couldn’t help but think of what it was like in the early Church after the resurrection. If you open up the book of the Acts of the Apostles, the outpouring of the Holy Spirit was powerful and provided a response from the Apostles as if Jesus was among them, alive and well. They believed in His presence and lived in His spirit and power. The presence of the Holy Spirit healed many, converted even more, and even shook the earth and times. What a reality!

As I extended my arm in prayer over Nick, I couldn’t help but realize that the same Holy Spirit that moved the earth and healed so many in the early Church is the same Holy Sprit that was present in that very moment. The same power, the same spirit, and the same presence of Jesus among us. Upon reflection on that experience, a part of me was overwhelmed with the powerful reality, but another part of me was saddened. How far we have strayed from the early Church. How far we have strayed from believing in the power and presence of the Holy Spirit. How far we have strayed from trusting in the intimate presence of Jesus in our lives. Oh how far we have strayed!

I figured while our world is talking about outbreaks and pandemics it might be a good time to recommend another possible outbreak. An outbreak of the Holy Spirit. My friends, there is no greater time than now to call down the Holy Spirit in a powerful way. The absence of signs and miracles in our world today is not because Jesus has taken some time off, it is because we have quit believing! The reason Peter, John, Paul and all the others were able to perform miracles and even escape from a locked prison is because they believed that Jesus was alive and that he lived among them in the power of the Holy Spirit. The world changed before them as they allowed themselves to be used by the risen Lord and to be transformed by His love. They believed!

To live this reality, we must all ask for the faith to believe that Jesus is alive and lives among us. And the great thing about this outbreak, like all outbreaks, it is contagious. The reason thousands and thousands of people gave up everything and were converted in the early Church is because they witnessed the lives and faith of the Apostles. Trust me, this outbreak you want to catch.

My friends, this week ask the Holy Spirit to come into your life in a powerful way. As for the faith to believe that Jesus is alive right now in your life. He longs to heal, transform, convert, and fulfill everything in your life.

Jesus is not dead, He is alive. Come Holy Spirit!

God Bless You,


Rusty is a seminarian at St. Gregory the Great Seminary in Seward, Nebraska and is the co-founder of Live Greater Ministries. The ministry's aim is to invite the youth of the Church into a dialogue about the present culture and how Jesus invites us to a relationship with him, finding true happiness and greater purpose.  More information can be found on their website at

* Catholic News Agency columns are opinion and do not necessarily express the perspective of the agency.


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