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Only Catholics Have the Holy Spirit
Today with the spread of the Pentecostal Movement many people claim that they have the Holy Spirit. This is not true.

St. Augustine puts these pretensions to rest when he adamantly affirms that only Catholics have the Holy Spirit. Protestants, who like to quote St. Augustine, should study well what he teaches: that they cannot have the Holy Spirit if they are outside the One True Church.

St. Augustine

So whoever has the Holy Spirit is in the Church, which speaks the languages of all people. Whoever is outside this Church, does not have the Holy Spirit. … One body, says the Apostle Paul, one body and one spirit (Eph 4:4).

Consider our own bodies and their parts. The body consists of many parts, and one spirit quickens all the parts. By the human spirit, by which I am myself this human being, I bind together all parts of my body; I command the limbs to move, I direct the eyes to see, the ears to hear, the tongue to talk, the hands to work, the feet to walk. The functions of the different parts vary, but the unity of the spirit coordinates them all.

Many things are commanded, many things are done; but it is just one who commands and one who is served. What our spirit, which is our soul, is to the parts or members of our body, that is what the Holy Spirit is to the members of Christ, to the body of Christ.

But I ask you, is this body alive? Indeed it is. With what? With One Spirit. And only One Spirit.

So consider, brothers and sisters, the case of our own bodies, and grieve for those who cut themselves off from the Church. … But now, if a member is cut off from the body, the spirit does not follow, is this not true? And yet the member can still be recognized for what it is: It is a finger, a hand, an arm, an ear. Apart from the body it retains its shape, it does not retain life. So too with persons separated from the Church.


Blason de Charlemagne
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Excerpts from Sermon [of St. Augustine], III/7 (268),
trans. by Edmund Hill, NY: New City Press, 1993

Posted on June 3, 2023

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