BAPTISM IN THE HOLY SPIRIT is not something for a particular type of Catholic. Or personality. To be Catholic is to be open to all God desires for us. Whether we understand it or not. Whether it has been represented well or not. That is to say, Baptism in the Holy Spirit is orthodox. Correct belief. God's desire for each of us to live in His fullness.
WHAT IS IT? In brief, Baptism in the Holy Spirit is stirring up latent grace conferred in the sacraments. It is not simply something known, but Someone known. An encounter. It is typically prompted when one comes into honest confrontation with their human existence. When even observant religion may be experienced as a "field of dry bones." (Ez. 37) When you feel like you're going through the motions. When you intuitively know there's something more. When you're humble enough to say, "Lord Jesus Christ, I want it all."
When we connect with the deepest yearning of our hearts, when we know this is given by God for great intimacy with Himself, we are in a place of receptivity... involving being prayed over for a new outpouring of the Holy Spirit.
Baptism in the Holy Spirit, at its core, is not about great gifts, but indescribable intimacy with the great Giver. It is not about stirring up emotion. It is not about performance. It is not about hype. Indeed, if one desires great intimacy with God we must be availed to His Hands forming us through "purgative" seasons-- that purge us from faith based upon mere consolations instead of the Consoler. This does entail dark nights of sense and spirit (St. John of the Cross). However, Baptism in the Holy Spirit ignites a slow-burning fire within. Awakening us to a deep, intimate knowledge of the person of Jesus Christ. Summoning us ever deeper. The power of the Holy Spirit alive in and through us. To live in the power of His Kingdom here and now.
Baptism in the Holy Spirit is all the difference between merely reading about love, understanding its concepts, and actually BEING in love.
Yes, from which flows innumerable manifestations from the God of love. As indicated in Scripture and continuing throughout history. Up to this present day. Like the many hundreds who experienced miraculous healings at the recent Encounter Conference in Toledo just a week ago. Like the instances of miraculous healings through our own prayer, including medically verified healing of a terminal illness. For the purpose of all awakening to our ultimate nature and purpose in God.
Baptism in the Holy Spirit is a game-changer. It is the distinctive attribute of just about every dynamic, game-changing Catholic leader I know (or have known). It is God's desire for each of us who call upon His name.
If you've experienced Baptism in the Holy Spirit, give a shout out. What difference did it make?