Pentecost is celebrated on the seventh Sunday or 50 days after Easter Sunday.
This Christian holy day is also known as Whit Sunday, White Sunday and Whitsun (United Kingdom), commemorating the descent of the Holy Spirit on the Apostles and followers of Jesus Christ in Jerusalem. You will find this story in the New Testament part of the bible Acts 2:1-31.
This Feast Day falls on the 50th day of Easter. The term Pentecost comes from the Greek Pentēkostē, meaning "fiftieth". It refers to the Jewish festival of Shavuot celebrated on the fiftieth day after Passover. It is also known as the "Feast of Weeks" and the "Feast of 50 days" in rabbinic tradition.
In the Middle Ages, cathedrals and great churches throughout Western Europe were fitted with a peculiar architectural feature known as a Holy Ghost hole: a small circular opening in the roof that symbolized the entrance of the Holy Spirit into the midst of the congregation. At Pentecost, these Holy Ghost holes would be decorated with flowers, and sometimes a dove figure lowered through into the church while the narrative of Pentecost was read. Holy Ghost holes can still be seen today in European churches such as Canterbury Cathedral.
Traditionally, followers of Christ reflect on the gifts and the Fruits of the Holy Spirit.
At Mildmay, during our chapel service, we put the various ‘gifts and fruits' in a basket, and we pick out the gift we hope we have already; then, we pick out the ‘fruit’ we need to pray for in our lives.
Top image: Fyona A. Hallé