Pentecost, celebrated on the fiftieth day after Easter, commemorates the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the Apostles and other followers of Jesus Christ, as described in the Bible, in chapter 2 of the Book of the Acts of the Apostles. Artists often depict this appearance of the Spirit as “tongues of flame” appearing above the heads of Mary and the Apostles.

1 When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place. 2 And suddenly from heaven there came a sound like the rush of a violent wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. 3 Divided tongues, as of fire, appeared among them, and a tongue rested on each of them. 4 All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages, as the Spirit gave them ability. (Acts 2)

Christians believe this event of wind and fire, of Spirit descent and surprising interpersonal connection represents the birth of the Church. The tongues of flame are also the reason for the shape of a miter or mitre, a bishop’s hat, which is said to represent the tongues of fire that rested on the apostles.

Pentecost is a day especially appropriate for baptisms, a time when all Christians can renew the promises made at their own baptism. The liturgical color for the feast is red. Many congregations have Pentecost picnics or other church family celebrations.

The Day of Pentecost is one of the seven principal feasts of the church year in the Episcopal Church – the others are Easter Day, Ascension Day, Trinity Sunday, All Saints’ Day (Nov. 1), Christmas Day, and the Epiphany (Jan. 6).

Read more about The Episcopal Church.

Here’s a list of Episcopal churches in the Episcopal Diocese of Texas

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