According to the Acts of the Apostles, St. Luke explains in (Luke 2:6-7), how on the day of Pentecost, the Holy Spirit filled the apostles and gave them the ability to speak in various languages (referred to as “tongues”).
He writes, “[the crowd was] confused because each one heard them speaking in his own language. They were astounded, and in amazement”.
Most often, this is referred to as the gift of “speaking in tongues” or the “gift of tongues”. As it may not look like a necessary gift in today’s world, as St. Josemaria Escriva believes it can still serve a purpose in a different way.
Cause, he writes in his homily on the Holy Spirit titled “ The Great Unknown” how “Every generation of Christians needs to redeem and to sanctify its own time. In a way to do this, we must however understand and share the desires of other men — as equals — in order to make known to them, with a gift of tongues, how they are to correspond to the action of the Holy Spirit.”
Escriva furthermore, explains, “We Christians are called upon to announce, in our own time, to this world to which we belong and in which we live, the message — old and at the same time new — of the Gospel.”
He also, urges us to announce the ancient message of the Gospel in a way that the modern world will understand. As the core truths of the Gospel remain unchanged, it is the language used that changes in order to suit the time in which we live.
St. Paul VI was a pioneer when it comes to this, as he writes in his apostolic exhortation entitled Evangelii Nuntiandi, that evangelizing the modern world says giving “this necessary food and sustenance to the faith of the believers, especially through a catechesis full of Gospel vitality and in a language suited to people and circumstances.”
Meanwhile, Paul VI continues as he says that, “Evangelization loses more force and effectiveness if it does not take into consideration the actual people to whom it addresses, if it does not use their language, their signs and their symbols, if it does not answer the questions they ask, and if it does not have an impact on their concrete life.”
This particular work is ongoing, one that is difficult to accomplish without the grace of the Holy Spirit.
Let as well us pray to the Holy Spirit for this “gift of tongues”, giving us the ability to preach the Gospel to the modern world in a language people understand, leading to a total conversion of life.