The One Called Alongside

In John 14:16 Jesus calls the Holy Spirit the “Paraclete.” The literal translation of the word Paraclete is “the One Called Alongside.”

Paraclete is also translated as:






Over the last five months of this pandemic you may have felt isolated, uncertain, confused, lonely or afraid.  Likely you felt several of these things.  It is times like this when we must fall back on the truths of our awesome Catholic Faith.  In particular the astounding truth Jesus told us about the One Called Alongside.  To comfort us when we feel isolated.  To counsel us when we are uncertain.  To help us when we are confused.  To be our advocate when we are lonely.  To encourage us when we are afraid.

Maybe you didn’t feel like the Holy Spirit was around much during these past five months.  He was.  He is alongside of you – waiting on you to call on Him.  One of the prayers that Jesus guarantees will get a “Yes” from God is if we ask for the Holy Spirit.

And I tell you, Ask, and it will be given you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. 10 For every one who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened. 11 What father among you, if his son asks for * a fish, will instead of a fish give him a serpent; 12 or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? 13 If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!” 

Luke 11:9-13

The great symbol of the Holy Spirit is fire.  His fire is a transforming fire.  A fire that does not destroy, but creates… creates things new.  The Holy Spirit was hovering above the waters in the beginning, ready to create.  Now He has a new creation – our souls.  The Holy Spirit comes to us, in prayer and especially in the sacraments, and transforms us into a new creation in Christ Jesus.  As this new creation we are called to bring Jesus and the Holy Spirit to the whole world.

The apostles were given instructions from Jesus right before He ascended into Heaven.  Before they did anything else, the apostles were to pray for the coming of the Holy Spirit.  And after nine days of prayer the Holy Spirit came to them as fire and recreated them anew.  Praying for the coming of the Holy Spirit is a prayer as old as the Church.  For the last 800 years the prayer Veni Sancte Spiritus (Come Holy Spirit) has been the cry of the Church for the coming of the Holy Spirit.

Come, Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of Thy faithful and enkindle in them the fire of Thy love. Send forth Thy Spirit and they shall be created. And Thou shalt renew the face of the earth.

He is the One Called Alongside.  He is there waiting for your invitation.  Pray to Him to come alongside you.

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