A Reading from Genesis 11:1-9
whole earth had one language and the same words. And as they migrated from the east, they came upon a plain in the land of
Shinar and settled there. And they said to one another, "Come, let us make bricks, and burn them thoroughly." And
they had brick for stone, and bitumen for mortar. Then they said, "Come, let us build ourselves a city, and a tower with
its top in the heavens, and let us make a name for ourselves; otherwise we shall be scattered abroad upon the face of the
whole earth." The LORD came down to see the city and the tower, which mortals had built. And the LORD said, "Look, they
are one people, and they have all one language; and this is only the beginning of what they will do; nothing that they propose
to do will now be impossible for them. Come, let us go down, and confuse their language there, so that they will not understand
one another's speech." So the LORD scattered them abroad from there over the face of all the earth, and they
left off building the city. Therefore it was called Babel, because there the LORDconfused the language of all the earth; and
from there the LORD scattered them abroad over the face of all the earth.
Humanity challenges the divine realm and becomes confounded and divided.
How might we think about this story today?
Where do you see human hubris? Where do you see potential destructive
consequences because of human pride and autonomy?
Saint Helena Psalter
One, how manifold are your works; *
in wisdom you have made them all; the earth is full
of your creatures.
Yonder is the great and wide sea with its living things too many to
creatures both small and great.
There move the ships,
and there is that Leviathan, *
which you have made for the sport of it.
All of them look to you *
to give them their food in due season.
You give it to them; they gather it; *
you open your hand, and they are filled with good
You hide your face, and they are terrified; *
away their breath, and they die and return to their dust.
You send forth your Spirit, and they
are created; *
and so you renew the face of the earth.
glory of God endure for ever; *
may the Holy One rejoice in all creation.
God looks at the earth and it trembles; *
God touches the mountains and they smoke.
I will sing to God as long as I live; *
I will praise my God while I have
May these words of mine find favor; *
I will rejoice
in the Holy One.
How do you experience the awe
of the divine in nature and creation?
A reading from Acts
of the Apostles (Acts 2:1-21)
When the day of Pentecost had come, the disciples were all
together in one place. And suddenly from heaven there came a sound like the rush of a violent wind, and it filled the entire
house where they were sitting. Divided tongues, as of fire, appeared among them, and a tongue rested on each of them. All
of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages, as the Spirit gave them ability.
were devout Jews from every nation under heaven living in Jerusalem. And at this sound the crowd gathered and was bewildered,
because each one heard them speaking in the native language of each. Amazed and astonished, they asked, "Are not all
these who are speaking Galileans? And how is it that we hear, each of us, in our own native language? Parthians, Medes, Elamites,
and residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya belonging
to Cyrene, and visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes, Cretans and Arabs-- in our own languages we hear them speaking
about God's deeds of power." All were amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, "What does this mean?" But
others sneered and said, "They are filled with new wine."
But Peter, standing with the eleven,
raised his voice and addressed them, "Men of Judea and all who live in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and listen
to what I say. Indeed, these are not drunk, as you suppose, for it is only nine o'clock in the morning. No, this is what was
spoken through the prophet Joel:
`In the last days it will be, God declares,
that I will pour out my Spirit upon
and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,
and your young men shall see visions,
and your old men shall dream dreams.
Even upon my slaves, both men and women,
those days I will pour out my Spirit;
and they shall prophesy.
And I will show portents in the heaven
and signs on the earth below,
blood, and fire, and smoky mist.
shall be turned to darkness
and the moon to blood,
before the coming of the Lord's
great and glorious day.
Then everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.' "__________
The gift of the Holy Spirit descends upon the people on
the day of Pentecost.
The division of language is healed, and people praise
God together in many languages.
How can we live in this
A reading from the Gospel according to John
Philip said to Jesus, "Lord, show us the Father, and we will be satisfied." Jesus said to
him, "Have I been with you all this time, Philip, and you still do not know me? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father.
How can you say, `Show us the Father'? Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words that
I say to you I do not speak on my own; but the Father who dwells in me does his works. Believe me that I am in the Father
and the Father is in me; but if you do not, then believe me because of the works themselves. Very truly, I tell you, the one
who believes in me will also do the works that I do and, in fact, will do greater works than these, because I am going to
the Father. I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If in my name you ask me
for anything, I will do it.
"If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father,
and he will give you another Advocate, to be with you forever. This is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive,
because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, because he abides with you, and he will be in you."
Jesus says we have seen God
because we have seen him.
The Advocate -- God's Spirit -- is with us forever.
How do you experience
the Spirit of God abiding with you and in you?