Whitsunday

Today we celebrate the feast of Pentecost. It marks the end of the Easter Season but it is hardly an “end” to anything. It is the grandest of beginnings. The Solemnity of Pentecost is the celebration of the descent of the Holy Spirit that constituted the Catholic Church and sanctifies us through the sacraments. In the early Church, Christians would dress in white on Pentecost to commemorate their Baptism and their reception of the Holy Spirit. It is why Pentecost was nicknamed Whitsunday (“white Sunday”). Babies and catechumens still wear white at their baptisms and we employ white attire at the reception of other sacraments, e.g., First Communion, Confirmation, Matrimony, etc. Clergy and liturgical ministers also wear albs – white robes named after the Latin word for white, albus – when assisting in the celebration of sacraments.

While you probably don’t fit into your baby baptismal gown anymore or own an alb I ask you to playfully consider wearing as many white clothes as possible when you come to Mass this weekend to any of the Pentecost Masses on June 3rd and 4th. It’s an easy and fun way to celebrate our solidarity in the Spirit and an inspiration to those who are visiting for Mass. Imagine the impact this year if all of us wore white on Pentecost!