There was a great spate of End Time books as the Third Millennium approached and dawned. Novels and those rather odd pseudo-factional documentary type books so beloved of Da Vinci code believers filled bookshop shelves taunting us all with an almost gleeful doomilism. Y2K was coming when all computers would crash and we would all be plunged into chaos and death. Volcanoes everywhere were about to blow, followed by earthquakes. Those who might survive that faced the heat of global warming and deep chill of global freezing-caused by something happening to the Atlantic current. Don't ask.
People of all persuasions were muttering and even getting a bit panicky about the idea that we seemed to be entering the...dum, dum, der...End Times.
All of this excitement however was squished by terribly sensible Chestonian types who pointed out that we have been living in the End Times since Pentecost.
So here we are celebrating Pentecost when the Holy Spirit descended on the Church; Mary the mother of the Church and the 11 remaining apostles. The message of Salvation was about to burst forth from the upper room in down town Jerusalem and set the world on fire.
we have been baptised in the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit and in His Name we are made whole. We can then face the end of the end times unafraid (well, a little nervous maybe). The end of the end times must come, and each day obviously brings us a little closer to that end, not just for the world but for each of us. We must as individuals face death and judgement and the choice between heaven and hell, but we should also be ready in case the Second Coming happens to us. It has to happen to someone doesn't it?
I do believe that Pope John Paul the Great was indeed the 'Spark' to come out of Poland to prepare the world for His Second Coming, as Jesus told St Faustina. It was our beloved John Paul who gave to us the Feast of Divine Mercy as Jesus asked St Faustina. The Pope called us to throw ourselves on God's mercy as most of us surely need to.
In celebrating Pentecost we must remember that this 8th day is a time of grace and as we hurtle towards Judgement (as we must) we can feel Christ is our Hope as we bathe in His Mercy.
So Pentecost isn't just about something that happened so long ago it hardly seems to matter any more-Pentecost is now, the end times are now. We shouldn't get all hung up about it, but neither should we be ignoring it.
We need to be alert and reading the signs of the times- and God knows there are lots of them!