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Showing posts from June 13, 2014

How Not to Speak of People (and the Holy Spirit)

As I wrote last week, with the season of Pentecost upon us, I want to get away from writing longer pieces on topics that vary from week to week, and instead write a series of short(er) installments that stick to one topic: the Holy Spirit. So beginning today, and running through most of the summer, I want to unpack topics such as "Who is the Holy Spirit?" Notice the pronoun in that question. The question is, "WHO is the Holy Spirit?" -- not "what is the Holy Spirit?" That's the first point I want to make about the Holy Spirit, and it's an important one: the Holy Spirit is a person, not a thing.   (Which brings up a problem with English not having a neutral personal pronoun: the pronouns "he" and "she" are inadequate when referring to the Holy Spirit...but at least they are better pronouns that "it." You should no more say "it" when referring to the Holy Spiri