Before He left His Apostles, the Lord had promised them on the part of His Father not to leave them orphans, but to send them "another Paraclete, the Holy Spirit, to bring them to the fullness of truth", and to sustain them in their combats by His invincible Force. The Acts of the Apostle clearly bring out this miraculous assistance of the Holy Spirit in the primitive Church, to such an extent that St. John Chrysostom calls "the Acts", the Gospel of the Spirit. In continuity with the patristic tradition, the great theologians of the Middle Ages have reserved to the Spirit of God an eminent place in their doctrinal systematizations. In his
Summa contra Gentiles (IV, 20, 21, 22), St. Thomas Aquinas has left us a resume of this common teaching in three rightly celebrated chapters. After two centuries of pure deism, Vatican II has
brought about a vigorous redressing in favor the Church of the Trinity, in which the principal role of the Holy Spirit is clearly brought out. Due to the prominent place of the Holy Spirit in the Spirituality of the Cross, the conciliar text constitutes the best introduction for marking, according to the present directives of the Magisterium, the primacy of the Holy Spirit in the life of the Church.
"When the work which the Father had given the Son to do on earth (cf. Jn 17:4) was accomplished, the Holy Spirit was sent on the day of Pentecost in order that He might forever sanctify the Church, and thus all believers would have access to the Father through Christ in the one Spirit (cf. Ep 2:18). He is the spirit of life, a fountain of water springing up to life eternal (cf. Jn 4:14; 7:38-39). Through Him the Father gives life to men who are dead from sin, till at last He receives in Christ even their mortal bodies" (cf. Rm 8:10-11).
"The Spirit dwells in the Church and in the hearts of the faithful as in a temple (cf. 1 Cor 3:16). In them He prays and bears witness to the fact that they are adopted sons (cf. Gal 4:6; Rom 8:15, 16, 26). The Spirit guides the Church into the fullness of truth (cf. Jn 16:13) and gives her a unity of fellowship and service. He furnishes and directs her with various gifts, both hierarchical and charismatic, and adorns her with the fruits of His grace (cf. Ep 4:11-122; 1 Cor 12:4; Gal 5:22). By the power of the gospel He makes the Church grow, perpetually renews her, and leads her to perfect union with her Spouse. The Spirit and the Bride both say to the Lord Jesus, 'Come'!" (cf. Rv 22:17).
"Thus, the Church shines forth as 'a people made one with the unity of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit'"
The Holy Spirit dominates the Cross
If the Cross is at the center of Conchita's spiritual doctrine, the Holy Spirit is at the summit. It dominates the Cross and illumines it from above. "This Holy Spirit is He who governs the world and the Church, after I departed. After the Ascension, I sent Him. Yet if you only knew how little He is honored and how little known! There are hardly any temples in His honor. He is undervalued and little thought of. He is not given the glory He merits as a divine Person. I hide Myself within this Cross of the Apostolate in order that He reign and be adored. The Apostolate of the Cross will erect temples to Him throughout the whole world. In these Churches, a cult of perfection will be rendered the Holy Spirit. Without Him this Work would crumble, but with His divine breath He will communicate the Spirit of the Cross. Tell all this to your director in order that he reflect and that the first ejaculatory prayer in this Apostolate be an invocation of the Holy Spirit. He will cover with His wings this Apostolate of the Cross and His divine influence is of the greatest importance" (Diary, March 1894).
A Hidden and Unexploited Treasure
For many Christians the Holy Spirit is an unknown. The Lord reveals to Conchita His personal identity in the bosom of the Trinity where He is Love, and His mission on the earth is to bring souls to the hearth of Love. Hence the need of the reign of the Holy Spirit and the urgency of a renewal of His cult. The sentence recalls to us that "His mission in heaven, His Life, His Being, is Love." Here we touch on the root of all, on His proper function
ad intra, from within. His mission ad extra, from without, outside the Trinitarian mystery, reflects the properties of love.
"There exists a hidden treasure, a wealth remaining unexploited and in no way appreciated at its true worth, which is nevertheless that which is the greatest in heaven and on earth: the Holy Spirit. The world of souls itself does not know Him as it should. He is the Light of intellects and the Fire which enkindles hearts. If there is indifference, coldness, weakness, and so many other evils which afflict the spiritual world and even My Church, it is because recourse is not had to the Holy Spirit.
"His mission in heaven, His Life, His Being, is Love.
"On earth, His mission consists in leading souls toward this hearth of Love which is God. With Him, there is possessed all that can be desired.
"If there is sadness, it is because recourse is not had to this divine Consoler, to Him who is perfect spiritual joy. If there is weakness, it is because there is no reliance on Him who is invincible Might. If there are errors, it is because of disregard for Him who is Light. Faith is extinguished through the absence of the Holy Spirit. In each heart and in the whole Church, there is not rendered the Holy Spirit that which is due to Him. Most of the evils that are deplored in the Church and in the field of souls comes from not according to the Holy Spirit the primacy which I have given to this Third Person of the Trinity who has taken so active a part in the Incarnation of the Word and in the founding of the Church. He is loved lukewarmly, invoked without fervor and in many hearts, even among My own, not even called to mind. All this deeply wounds My Heart.
"'It is time that the Holy Spirit reign.' Very moved, the Lord told me this. He went on, 'and not a remote reign as something very sublime, even though it be so and there is nothing greater than He since He is God united and consubstantial with the Father and the Word. But it is necessary that He reigns, here, right close, in each soul and in each heart, in all the structures of My Church. The day on which there will flow in each pastor, in each priest, like an inner blood, the Holy Spirit, then will be renewed the theological virtues, now languishing, even in the ministers of My Church, due to the absence of the Holy Spirit. Then the world will change, for all the evils deplored today have their cause in the remoteness of the Holy Spirit. Then the world will change, for all the evils deplored today have their cause in the remoteness of the Holy Spirit, the sole remedy. Let the ministers of My Church react, through the medium of the Holy Spirit, and the whole world of souls will be divinized. He is the axis around which revolve the virtues. There is no virtue without the Holy Spirit. The decisive impulse for raising up My Church from the state of prostration in which she lies, consists in reviving the cult of the Holy Spirit. Let His place be given Him, that is, the first in intellects and wills!
No one will be lacking anything with this heavenly wealth. The Father and I, the Word, We desire an ardent and vitalizing renewal of His reign in the Church.'"
"Lord, yet the Holy Spirit reigns in the Church, why do You complain?"
"Woe to Her were it not so! Certainly the Holy Spirit is the soul of this so dearly loved Church! But that about which I am complaining is that there is such little consideration for this gift of heaven, and to Him there is not accorded the importance due. His devotion in hearts is routine and languishing, indifferent, secondary. This brings about countless evils not only in the Church but in all souls. That is why the Works of the Cross have just come to renew devotion to Him and to extend it throughout the earth. May the Holy Spirit reign in souls, and the Word will be known and honored, the Cross taking on a new force in the souls spiritualized by divine Love.
"To the extent the Holy Spirit will reign, sensuality, which today invades the earth, will disappear. The Cross will never take root unless beforehand the soil is made ready by the Holy Spirit. That is why He appeared to you first even before the vision of the Cross. It is because of this He is at the summit of the Cross of the Apostolate.
"One of the main fruits of the mystical incarnation is the reign of the Holy Spirit which must bring about the disappearance of materialism" (Diary, Feb. 19, 1911).
Action of the Holy Spirit in Souls and in the Church
The action of the Holy Spirit makes itself felt first in souls but it also extends to the whole Church.
'He is the source of divine grace and He never remains inactive. Day and night, He labors in souls who give themselves to Me, and these souls constantly advance in virtues. But when souls resist or are indifferent, then I withdraw since My graces are of too great a price to be wasted on them. The work of the Holy Spirit in souls is most delicate, and the soul who despises it is quite culpable… If it does not respond to My inspirations, to what I demand of it, I withdraw. There are some souls which it is necessary to push along at each step, others which run and fly. According to the measure of their correspondence with grace, they advance constantly rising to the degree I have destined for them. Be vigilant, hear My voice. You know
quite well that for hearing me it is necessary to keep your ears open… A total renunciation of yourself and a constant spirit of sacrifice.
"'Sacrifice yourself for My Church.' The Lord said this to me over and over again. On different occasions He made me understand the very close relationship which unites the Church with the Cross. He told me, 'the Church was born on the Cross.' The Holy Spirit came later to confirm her teachings and to give her life. The Holy Spirit asserted that the Church is the depositary of all His graces. He has set in Her His abode. He loves Her passionately and no one enters paradise save through her. The Spirit imprints His seal on all her ceremonies.
"Without the divine seal nothing is done, no salvation is possible" (Letter to Msgr. Leopoldo Ruiz y Flores, June 23, 1904).
The Holy Spirit stays close to Souls
The Holy Spirit dwells in the very depths of the souls. "He remains with you and will be within you" (Jn 14:17). The whole Trinity dwells in us. "Anyone who loves me will be true to my word, and my Father will love him; we will come to him and make our dwelling place with him" (Jn 14:23). All the baptized who possess grace, are "temples of the Holy Spirit" (1 Cor 6:19).
"Some souls think that the Holy Spirit is very far away, far, far up above. Actually, He is, we might say, the divine Person who is most closely present to the creature. He accompanies him everywhere. He penetrates him with Himself, He calls him, He protects him. He makes of him His living temple. He defends him. He helps him. He guards him from all his enemies. He is closer to him than his own soul. All the good a soul accomplishes, it carries out under His inspiration, in His light, by His grace and His help. And yet He is not invoked, He is not thanked for His direct and intimate action in each soul. If you invoke the Father, if you love Him, it is through the Holy Spirit. If you love Me ardently, if you know Me, if you serve Me, if you imitate Me, if you make yourself but one with My wishes and with My heart, it is through the Holy Spirit.
"He is considered inaccessible and He actually is but there is nothing that exists nearer, more helpful to the creature in his misery than this Being of a supreme transcendence, this most Holy Spirit who reflects and who constitutes one and the same holiness with the Father and the Son. Centuries have passed and He remains ever the Principle of all things. He engraves His mark on souls and His sign on the priest. He communicates the light of faith and all the virtues. He irrigates and fertilizes the whole field of the Church. Despite this, He is not appreciated, He is not known, He is not thanked for His perpetually sanctifying action. If the world is ungrateful to Me, how much more so toward the Holy Spirit!
"Here is why I want His glory to be shown to the end of time… One of the cruelest interior sufferings for My Heart was this ingratitude of all times, this workship of idols of other times, and today man's self-workship, forgetful of the Holy Spirit. In these latter days sensuality has set up its reign in the world. This sensual life obscures and extinguishes the light of faith in souls. That is why more than ever, it is necessary that the Holy Spirit come to destroy and annihilate Satan who under this form penetrates even the Church" (Diary, Jan. 26, 1915).
The Soul of Christ moved by the Holy Spirit
Christ is the masterpiece of the Holy Spirit. As Word, He is with the Father, His eternal Principle. The Holy Spirit received all from the Son: His Being in its infinite perfections. He is Love in a Person who proceeds indivisibly from the Father and from the Son in the Oneness of the Trinity. But, as man, Jesus has received all from the Holy Spirit: His incarnation, His being, His life, His action on all the members of His Mystical Body.
"Every movement of My soul has been inspired and carried out under the movement of the Holy Spirit. He is who animates My faculties, My senses, My will, holding them in His possession for the glory of the Father to whom I return everything… The Holy Spirit loves My humanity with an incomparable predilection… If you only know with what delicacy, with what tenderness, and with what splendor the Holy Spirit adorns My soul, My faculties, My feelings, My body and My heart! Even more than a mother He is all love. He displayed all His might, all His riches to form Me in Mary's womb, as a perfect model of all that is beautiful, pure and holy. All the riches and treasures which adorn My Heart, I owe to the Holy Spirit. I do not like devotion to My Heart, to be regarded as an end, but only as a means of being raised up to My Divinity, as a step for reaching the Holy Spirit since it is He who created, formed and enriched My human heart, who poured on it all the delights of His love as well as all the interior sufferings and the manner of undergoing universal expiation for the pardon of culpable mankind. The heart of man and his body had sinned. There was need of another heart and another body united to the power of a God to give satisfaction to this Other who is God. This plan, this action, this salvific purpose, glorifying my humanity and for the salvation of the world, are owed to the Holy Spirit" (Diary, Jan. 29, 1915).
The First Place in the Church
Thus opening up wide horizons, the Lord showed Conchita the unique and primordial place of the Holy Spirit in the works of God. The Holy Spirit was there before creation in the councils of the Trinity, orienting with the Father and the Son the way of the destiny of the world. The Spirit was there, preparing the coming of the Son and carrying it out at the moment of the Incarnation of the Word, ever present and acting in His Church until the end of time.
"The Holy Spirit took an extremely active part in the carrying out of the eternal plan of Redemption. Then, when the time came, He carried out the work of the Incarnation, after having made it clear to the prophets, announcing it to them before hand. During My life it was He who sustained me, He who presented to My Father My infinite expiation and touched souls, drawing them to the Truth which I am. I had promised to send Him and I have done so, for, in each of His acts, in the sacraments and His infallible action, the Holy Spirit holds in My Church the first place" (Diary, Jan. 28, 1915).