Why Do You Not Speak in Tongues?


From the Divine Office of Readings for the Saturday before Pentecost, from a sermon by a sixth century African author.

Therefore if somebody should say to one of us,
“You have received the Holy Spirit, why do you not speak in tongues?” his reply should be,

“I do indeed speak in the tongues of all men, because I belong to the body of Christ, that is, the Church, and she speaks all languages. What else did the presence of the Holy Spirit indicate at pentecost, except that God’s “Church was to speak in the language of every people?”…

Keep this feast, then, as members of the one body of Christ. It will be no empty festival for you if you really live what you are celebrating. For you are the members of that Church which the Lord acknowledges as his own, being Himself acknowledged by her, that same Church which He fills with the Holy Spirit as she spreads throughout the world….

…to all of you the Apostle addresses these words:

Bear with one another in love; do all you can to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.

Notice that when Paul urges us to bear with one another, he bases his argument on love, and when he speaks of our hope of unity, he emphasizes the bond of peace. This Church is the house of God, buitlt up of living stones, whose master is almighty God. It is His delight to dwell here. Take care, then, that He never has the sorrow of seeing it undermined by schism and collapsing in ruins.

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