Arrupe — Veni, Creator Spiritus

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Lord, I need your Spirit, that divine force that has transformed so many human personalities, making them capable of extraordinary deeds and extraordinary lives. Give me that Spirit which, coming from You and returning to You, who are infinitely Holy,[1] is a Holy Spirit.

The judges of Israel, without expecting it, without inclination, without being able to resist, simple sons of villagers — Samson, Gideon, Saul — were changed by You, abruptly and completely. Not only did they become capable of tremendous acts of boldness and strength, but took on new personalities and felt themselves capable of performing a mission as difficult as liberating a whole people. Your action in them was interior, although it is sometimes described by images that emphasize your sudden or strange intervention. You descend upon Samson as a bird of prey,[2] and clothed Gideon as with armor.[3]

Feeling the difficulty of my mission, I desire your profound action in my soul, not only that You descend, but that You repose in me[4] and give me those wondrous gifts that You lavish on your elect: wisdom and intelligence, as you gave Bezalel[5] and Solomon; counsel and strength, as you gave David;[6] knowledge and fear of God, which was the ideal of so many holy souls of Israel. These gifts will open up for the Society an era of happiness and holiness.[7]

Give me what you gave to the Prophets: even if my craven soul protests, force me to speak by your irresistible pressure.[8] The word that came to them was not their own word but yours, the word of your Spirit that was sent to them not only to create a new personality for service but also to reveal its sense and secrets, a word of your Spirit that is not only intelligence and strength but also knowledge of God and God's ways.[9]

Give me, then, the strength with which you not only opened up your word to the Prophets to the point of revealing to them your glory,[10] but also that strength that enabled them to stand before the people and announce their fate.[11]

With that voice that you make groan in the depths of my being,[12] I seek the copious outpouring of yourself, like the rain that restores life to the arid earth,[13] and like the breath of life that comes to animate dry bones,[14]

Give me that Spirit that scrutinizes all, inspires all, teaches all, that will strengthen me to support what I am not able to support. Give me the Spirit that transformed the weak Galilean fishermen into the pillars of your Church and into Apostles who gave in the holocaust of their Jives the supreme testimony of their love for their brothers.

Thus, this life-giving outpouring will be like a new creation, of hearts transformed, of a sensibility receptive to the voice of the Father, of a spontaneous fidelity to his word.[15] Thus, You will find us again faithful and You will not hide your face from us because You will have poured your Spirit over us. Now I understand that in order to accomplish all this one needs a love like that of the Father, a love that intervenes personally. "You, Yahweh, are our Father ... Why do You let us stray from your ways? ... Oh, that You would rend the heavens and come down."[16]

Such was your definitive manifestation: the heavens open, God the Father visible, God the Son coming down to the earth and becoming man to save the world: "This mystery that has now been revealed through the Spirit to his holy apostles and prophets was unknown to any men in past generations ... This, then, is what I pray, kneeling before the Father":[17] Veni Sancte Spiritus!

"The one who guarantees these revelations repeats his promise: I shall indeed be with you soon. Amen; come, Lord Jesus. May the grace of the Lord be with you all. Amen."[18]

Acta Romana Societatis Jesu 17 (1978) 556-558.

  1. Ex. 15,11.
  2. 2 Judg. 14,6.
  3. Judg. 6,34.
  4. Is. 11,2.
  5. Ex. 35,31.
  6. Is. 11,2.
  7. Is. 11,9.
  8. Amos 3,8; 7,14; Jer. 20,7.
  9. Is. 11,2; Ef. 1,17; Col. 1,9.
  10. Ez. 3,12; 8,3.
  11. Ez. 2,1; 3,24; 11,5.
  12. Rom. 8,26.
  13. Is. 12,3; 44,3; Ez. 36,25.
  14. Ez. 27,1-14; 1 Cor. 2,12; Jn. 16,22.
  15. Is. 59,21; Ps. 143,10.
  16. Is. 63,15-19.
  17. Ef. 3,5-14.
  18. Rv. 22,20-21.