Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you.
As the Father has sent me, so I send you.”
And when he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them,
“Receive the Holy Spirit.”
~ John 20:21-22
Today is the Feast of Pentecost: the coming of the Holy Spirit, raining down graces and blessings on the Church to give her courage, strength and inspiration. Cascades of gifts pour on the fearful disciples. The timid and the timorous are transformed into the the bold and the daring. The inarticulate and uneducated become full of eloquence and wisdom. From their hiding places, the disciples sally forth to proclaim the Word.
We have had Pentecost (Spirit) Moments in the history of the Philippines. The EDSA Revolution was one such moment. After decades of oppression and timidity, the people rose up to throw off the shackles of the dictatorship and tyranny. Parochial self-preservation gave way to communal sharing and giving. Fear for one’s safety and possessions gave way to passion for nation and country. Passivity and cynicism gave way to volunteerism and desire to contribute.
Today, we may be going through another Pentecost moment. The recent Philippine elections have seen the biggest voters’ turnout in the country’s history. They have generally be the most peaceful and orderly. There were less reports of election-related violence. And I have not come across any report of election-related deaths or killing. The counting have been the fastest ever and generally acknowledged as honest and accurate.
The winners for the top two posts are from the fringes and the peripheries, not from the usual centers and corridors of power in Manila. They belong to what VP-elect Leni Robredo has so picturesquely described as “yung mga nasa laylayan ng ating lipunan“. In the spirit of the new Pentecost, may we not lose any of those at the fringes and peripheries of our communities. Instead, may everyone be saved and be served.