Pastor’s Corner 6/11/2017

Today we celebrate:
THE SOLEMNITY OF THE MOST HOLY TRINITY.

While this particular article of our faith may be a stumbling block for some, or the most difficult concept to wrap one’s arms around—three persons in one, and all of that—there is hardly an article of faith that could compete with its enormity in our creed as Roman Catholics, Orthodox, and a whole host of Christian denominations.  After all, as Roman Catholics what don’t we begin without “In the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit”?  What blessing would be complete without it?

For me, at the top of the list of questions treated in “Trinity 101” would have to be:  Why DO we believe that God is Trinity?  In the face of a concept usually presented as “the deepest of mysteries” and down right mind boggling, the answer is so simple it’s almost insulting:  We believe in God as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, because Jesus taught it.  Before Jesus, there was no such revelation or knowledge about God.  Our Jewish ancestors taught that God is one and that God is personal, but only the Jewish Rabbi, Jesus, taught that God was his Father (and our Father) and that their combined wisdom and love is the Holy Spirit Advocate. Yes, this teaching/revelation of Jesus was unique to him, it was ground breaking, and it was part of what ultimately nailed him to a cross.  I don’t think it presumptuous of me to say that we should not take our faith in God as Holy Trinity lightly.

What is more, we must understand the importance of the revelation that God is both singular and plural.  If God were not so, neither would creation be experienced as singular and plural, individual and many.  If God created it, God has to be it.  So whenever we make the Sign of the Cross, we should also realize that God is the source and the foundation of all of our relationships.  We can only be individuals in relationship—be friends, be married, be a family, be a church—in as much as that is at the core of our being created in the image and likeness of God.  Now, given the free will that came with our creation, if only we would choose to be like the Trinity in all of our relationships, that is:  as the Father loves the Son, and the Son loves the Father, and therefore emanating the Holy Spirit of love.  When our human relationships are ordered correctly—that is to say, they are holy—love is the natural outcome.

The Solemnity of The Most Holy Trinity, then, is about relationship.  How could it not be?  We are called to think today and imagine how all of our relationships could become holier—how they could better mirror the likeness of God as Trinity.  Following upon Pentecost, of course, we may rely on the power of God’s Holy Spirit to provide the transforming grace and courage to make any needed changes in the living out of our relationships and commitments to one another. Come Holy Spirit.  Come!

By the way If you want to see what a 16th Century Peruvian artist (anonymous) thought The Most Holy Trinity might look like, check out our 400-year old prized painting of The Coronation of the Blessed Mother as Queen of Heaven.  You will find it in the northwest corner of the Church.  Can you identify who’s who among the Divine Triplets?          

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