Members of the Charismatic Renewal movement pray during the Pentecost Vigil celebrated by Cardinal O'Malley at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross May 26. Pilot photo/ Gregory L. Tracy
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SOUTH END -- In what looks to be the start of a new annual tradition, Cardinal Seán P. O'Malley brought together new movements, ecclesial realities, and ethnic communities of the Archdiocese of Boston to celebrate the Vigil of Pentecost on May 26.
The various groups joined together with guests at the vigil, sometimes called the "birthday of the Church," and celebrated a multi-lingual Mass and musical program at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross. Pentecost, which falls 50 days after Easter, celebrates the day when the Apostles received the Holy Spirit and began preaching the Gospel.
"It is only in the context of community that the gifts of the Spirit are bestowed, nurtured, and flourish," Cardinal O'Malley.
The readings and prayers of the Mass evoked the idea of people overcoming language and cultural barriers to worship as a single community with the help of the Holy Spirit.
The vigil readings were proclaimed in English, Portuguese and Spanish. The Gospel reading and general intercessions were each offered in seven different languages.
David Sulewski of the Community of Sant'Egidio proclaimed the first reading, Genesis 11:1-9, in English.
"That is why it was called Babel, because there the Lord confused the speech of all the world," Sulewski read.
In his homily, Cardinal O'Malley explained the significance of the coming of the Holy Spirit.