Sunday readings in brief: Holy Trinity Feaast 2021
Deut 4:32-34, 39-40; Ps 33; Rom 8:14-17; Mt 28:16-20
One God three persons
Dear friends, today is the Feast of the Holy Trinity, which occurs on the Sunday after the Pentecost. Next Sunday will be the feast of the Corpus Christi (Body and Blood of Christ). Trinity from the Latin word “Trinitas” means threefold. As Christians, through the revelation in the Holy Scriptures, we experience God in threefold manifestations, God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit.
In today’s first reading, in his farewell remarks, Moses reminds the people of Israel how God has manifested himself to them in such ways unheard of in any other nation. That God has spoken to his people and they lived to tell the tale. That God has taken a nation for himself and lived among them performing wonders and fighting on their behalf. He also insists to them that the Lord God is only one and the way to find his favour is keeping his commandments.
St. Paul refers to the Holy Spirit as the one who inspires us to be sons and daughters of God. He is one who enables us to believe and profess our faith in God and his Christ, with whom we become coheirs through adoption.
In the Gospel, we meet the risen Lord who, after opening the minds of his disciples to understand the scriptures, sends them out to baptize the people in the name of the Holy Trinity, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
In our creed, we profess what God has revealed to us about himself. That “I believe in one God, the Father almighty, maker of heaven and earth, of all things visible and invisible”. Through the Old Testament, God reveals himself as the Creator and sustainer of the things he has created. He is a father to his chosen people, protecting them and, through the prophets and other anointed figures, giving them instructions on righteousness.
“I believe in one Lord Jesus Christ, the Only Begotten Son of God, born of the Father before all ages. God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, consubstantial with the Father; through him, all things were made. For us men and for our salvation he came down from heaven”. Christ is the tangible manifestation of God who came to dwell with us in order to bring the Trinity closer to us. He has left us with his Body and Blood to eat and drink so that we can experience first-hand the love and sustenance of God on our return Journey to God.
“I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life, who proceeds from the Father and the Son, who with the Father and the Son is adored and glorified, who has spoken through the prophets”. The Holy Spirit is the fabric that unites the Holy Trinity. He is the one who makes it possible for us to experience the love of God. St. Paul tells us that it is through the power of the Holy Spirit that we are able to call God Abba-Father.
Every time God acts, he acts as one because he is one. However, we experience him in this mysterious threefold manner. During Creation God said, “let us create man in our own image and likeness” (Gen 1:26). We read that the Spirit of God was hovering over the surface before anything was created. God also created heaven and earth through is Word, God the Son. In Mt. 3:16-17, at the baptism of Jesus, The Spirit of God descended upon him in the image of a dove and the voice of the Father confirmed to that he was the beloved Son of God. The time of the Church is the time of the Holy Spirit who inspires Christians to imitate Christ in their lives and bringing love on earth.
Having expounded on the Trinity, we ask ourselves, what God means by revealing himself to us as Trinity. I believe that God intended us to share in his overflowing love between himself. It is such an intense love that enables Him to manifest himself in threefold manner yet remaining one. We can summarize this in one statement, “Unity in Diversity”.
God created two human gender and blessed them to be productive and bring children on earth as the fruits of the love and unity between them. God could have made one gender with the capacity to reproduce on its own like many plants do. However, he wanted human beings created in his image and likeness to experience and share in his love. Love cannot be introverted but always outgoing. Love manifests itself by overflowing outside its source and in the process creating.
This love is supposed to manifest in our families and communities. St. Paul summarizes the characteristics of true love as being patient and kind. It is not ambitious, envious, or act wrongly. Love does not seek for itself, and is not provoked by anger. Love does neither device any evil nor rejoice in iniquity but rejoices in truth.
Dear friends, as we reflect on the mystery of the Holy Trinity, let us learn unity in diversity and build families and communities overflowing with love and positive energy.
Fr. Lawrence Muthee, SVD
Tanzania May 30