Find a Guide

Pentecost Sunday

Pentecost Sunday

Church of Saint Saviour

May 23, 2021

Solemn Mass at 10:30 am



Pentecost is celebrated in both the Western and Eastern Church. In the Holy Land, this would more commonly be referred to as the Latin Churches and the Orthodox Churches.

The word is Greek (Pentecoste) for 50th, and it is celebrated 50 days after Christ rises from the dead. Pentecost coincides with the Jewish Feast of Shavuot, which takes place 50 days after Passover. [A good article by Susan Fiedler “Jewish Shavuot or Christian Pentecost” can be found at this link.]

Specifically, Pentecost is the coming or descent of the Holy Spirit, the third Person of the Holy Trinity, the promised Paraclete. Christ’s Passover is fulfilled and the Holy Spirit is fully revealed. This is the same Holy Spirit that speaks to us through the prophets, who first awakens our faith and communicates new life to us. (CCC, 684)

The Catechism of the Catholic Church says that “Baptism gives us the grace of new birth in God the Father, through his Son, in the Holy Spirit.” (CCC, 683)

In the Western Church, the liturgical color for Pentecost is red, symbolizing the Holy Spirit and the tongues of fire that descended on the first disciples and the Virgin Mary, gathered in the Upper Room. Red is also used for the celebrations of Palm Sunday, the Passion, martyrs, apostles and evangelists. In the Eastern Church, the liturgical color is green, the color of life. The Holy Spirit gives new life through Baptism and Confirmation.

In Pentecost we are renewed as a Church in its mission “to announce, bear witness, make present, and spread the mystery of the communion of the Holy Trinity.” (CCC 783)

The Latin Church in the Holy Land gathers each Pentecost in that same Upper Room on Mount Sion to beg for the renewal of the gifts of the Holy Spirit in each one. 

In 2021, the Feast of Pentecost is celebrated 23 May in the Western Church and 20 June in the Eastern Church.



             Photo Copyright: © Marie-Armelle Beaulieu/CTS

Fiedler, S. (2019, April 17). Jewish Shavuot or Christian Pentecost. HeraldCourier.Com. https://heraldcourier.com/lifestyles/jewish-shavuot-or-christian-pentecost/article_c759f649-7115-5b3a-9329-7c842a5208da.html

Kylesha. (2019, June 6). Pentecost in the East and West. TheByzantineLife.Com. https://thebyzantinelife.com/pentecost/

Kylisha. (2018, November 7). Liturgical Colours: Vestments in the East and West. TheByzantineLife.Com. https://thebyzantinelife.com/liturgical-colours/

Libreria Editrice Vaticana. (2016). Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2nd ed. United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. https://www.usccb.org/sites/default/files/flipbooks/catechism/