Pentecost is the festival when Christians celebrate the gift of the Holy Spirit. It is celebrated on the Sunday 50 days after Easter.
Pentecost is regarded as the birthday of the Christian church, and the start of the church's mission to the world.
The Holy Spirit is the third part of the Trinity of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit that is the way Christians understand God.
Pentecost is a happy festival. Ministers in church often wear robes with red in the design as a symbol of the flames in which the Holy Spirit came to earth.
Hymns sung at Pentecost take the Holy Spirit as their theme, and include: Come down O Love Divine, Come Holy Ghost our souls inspire, Breathe on me breath of God, O Breath of Life, come sweeping through us, There's a spirit in the air and Spirit of the Living God, fall afresh on me.
* Pentecost Symbols
The symbols of Pentecost are those of the Holy Spirit and include: flames, wind, the breath of God and a Dove.
* The first Pentecost
Pentecost comes from a Jewish harvest festival called Shavuot.
The apostles were celebrating this festival when the Holy Spirit descended on them.
It sounded like a very strong wind, and it looked like tongues of fire.
The apostles then found themselves speaking in foreign languages, inspired by the Holy Spirit.
People passing by at first thought that they must be drunk, but the apostle Peter told the crowd that the apostles were full of the Holy Spirit.