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Saturday, May 29, 2021

Holy Trinity - God in His Fullness

 Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity: 30 May 2021

Readings: Deuteronomy 4:32–34, 39–40; Psalm 33:4–6, 9, 18–20, 22; Romans 8:14–17; Matthew 28:16–20

(Picture courtesy: Jean-Marc Arakelian,  Icon of the Holy Trinity by Andrei Rublev) 

To listen to my audio reflections,  please click here

1. The powerful experience of the Holy Trinity in every day of our lives

We know things around us through our senses. The sense experience makes us understand the reality around us. In other words, we interpret things as we experience them through our senses. Each one might understand things differently based on one's earlier experiences. As we celebrate the solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity, we need to have clarity in place of confusion, faith in place of doubt to understand this complex reality of the Trinitarian God, which we hold so dear to us. The Holy Trinity Sunday is a reminder that God is but with Three. Our Christian faith says that God is a reality of our lives. Therefore the Church today celebrates this amazing feast which consists of a deep theological dimension to our faith and ecclesial life.  

Our every prayer activity begins by recalling the name of the Trinity: "In the Name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, Amen." Every Eucharistic celebration begins by invoking the name of the Holy Trinity. Even we conclude Eucharist by the blessings of the Holy Trinity. We are baptized in the name of the Holy Trinity. We are sent on a mission with a task to bring people to God in the name of the Trinity:  “Go, therefore, make disciples of all nations; baptize them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit” (Matthew 28:19). A sincere belief in the Holy Trinity is the principle rule that governs our Christian life. 

2. Participating in the mystery of the Holy Trinity in our daily activities. 
God is someone who is more than we can imagine of.  St. Paul writes that “in Him, we live and move and have our being” (Acts 17:28). But we go to Him with our simple faith and He comes to us just like the Father of the prodigal son, or like the Shepherd of the lost sheep which the Gospel of St Luke speaks of. He comes to us in our everyday experiences, activities, miseries, sufferings, pain, sorrow and joy. He comes to us when we show our humanity to our fellow brothers and sisters when we appreciate His creation that continues to feed us. This gives us hope, a hope to live in communion with God through our prayer and participating in the life of people by being kind, generous and gentle. 

Except for Jesus, no one has seen God the Father or the Holy Spirit. Jesus is a historical figure, and became part of our human history. Then how can we know about the Father and the Spirit? In fact, we cannot make images of the Holy Trinity and say that this is what the Holy Trinity all about. Our Christian faith practice requires a certain amount of imagination; an imagination, which must guide us and bring us to Christ. Because we know Christ, we know God the Father and the Holy Spirit. Still, the question on the Holy Trinity is difficult to explain and understand. The Holy Trinity consists of three persons which can be understood erroneously as three gods. However, it is three in One. We might better understand this mystery of our faith by knowing the kind of work each person of the Trinity is attached with.  For instance, God the Father is creator, God the Son brings salvation and the Holy Spirit sustains the creation.  

3. Contemplation of the Holy Trinity with our simple faith
We need to understand a bit differently here because God is one even though we think that there are three persons still three persons exist in different modes of being or three parts of one being. That’s why Jesus says, ‘those who have seen me, have seen the Father. Father and I are one. Everything that Father has is mine" (John 14:9). The Christian imagination of God is monotheistic. We believe in one God. We participate in the life of God through believing in such a God. We pray to the Holy Trinity who is beyond our comprehension of the intellect. Yet we are able to contemplate this mystery. This mystery is fascinating and tremendous. We partake in that mystery with our complete selves and with our simple faith. This mystery of God always pulls us towards him. This mystery is real, absolute and salvific.  

So what is the significance of this mystery of the Holy Trinity and feast of the Holy Trinity that we celebrate today?
First of all, it tells us who our God is. Secondly, it tells us that we need to have an imagination that is compatible with what we believe. Thirdly, it is through this mystery we are saved once and for all thanks to Jesus Christ. Fourthly, the Holy Trinity guides us in our earthly life.  To come to know God as Trinity is to come to know how God relates to us, what God does on our behalf. To speak of God as Trinity is to use a technical metaphor for the many ways we find God entering into our lives, the many ways we find God relating to this world, the many ways God touches our hearts and souls.

4. Love that binds everything in the Holy Trinity
One of the Russian saints Saint Philaret of Moscow writes about the Holy Trinity this way: Trinity is the “Crucifying Love of the Father, crucified Love of the Son, Love of the Holy Spirit triumphant by the wood of the Cross.” The knowledge of his loving presence with us is a wonderful gift, which can bring us strength and comfort as we try to live our lives as Christ has called us to do.  

How can we make the presence of the Holy Trinity visible in our lives? It is through prayer. By the water of Baptism and through the invocation of the name of the Holy Trinity we have become part of God’s life in a particular way. Through the blessings of the Holy Trinity, we become members of the Church of which Christ is the head.

In the early Church, Bishop Irenaeus spoke of the Son and the Spirit as the two hands of God, the two ways God reaches out, first to create, and then secondly, to embrace again this world of ours in holiness.

To say, "God is Trinity", is like saying "AMEN" to all that we have experienced here these last six months since Advent as having its roots, its very real source in that author of life we call God. To say "God is Trinity" is to recognize that the community we share with one another mirrors a community of love, which has its roots in the heart of God. God who has so loved this world that we have received redemption through the Son and new life in the Holy Spirit.

Questions for Reflections:

1. What is my experience of the Holy Trinity in my prayer?
2. In what ways, I can imagine the working of the Holy Trinity in my life, family, and community?
3. What amazes me in the life of the Holy Trinity, as I dwell deeper into this mystery of my faith?

Prayer:

God our Father, thank you for the precious gift of your Son, who came to show me how to love one another. May your Spirit be with me always, to guide me in all that I do.  Help me Lord to understand the divine mystery of your presence in this world. As I grapple in understanding you enlighten my heart and head with a clear vision of your love and grace. Take control of my life, change me from the inside out, make me the type of person you created me to be. I make this prayer in Jesus' name. Amen. 

- Olvin Veigas, SJ

29 May 2021

PS: During this Second Wave of Corona pandemic, the Karnataka Jesuit Province is actively involved in various types of humanitarian work in different parts of Karnataka. We have been regularly updating a blog https://kjes-spandana.blogspot.com/ which gives a glimpse of the work that we do where our apostolates or houses are based. 

6 comments:

lijiserin@gmail.com said...

Thank a lot fr. Olvin for enlightening our heart with the word of God,the Spirit is working with you and we could experience it through your words.

Unknown said...

Amazing and beautiful wordings Olvin! Very inspiring insightful message and powerful prayer that brings healing touch. Picture is very nice to contemplate on the theme. Thanks Olvin for your lovely messages of hope and courage.

Anonymous said...

Nice reflections father on this feast. And so happy to read the good works you all are doing

Anonymous said...

Yes, thank u Father, I have now a clear understanding of the mystery of the trinity. U have given us a beautiful narration which is really so inspirational. I am sure trinity is so happy with u.

Anonymous said...

As I went through your reflection, I recalled how from childhood, no matter the experiences- fear, joy, anxiety or thrilled, automatically I tend to invoke Holy Trinity by making Sign of the Cross. And I wholeheartedly affirms the powerful experience of Trinitarian God.
Thank you father for your thought provoking messages which always add to meaningful reflection of the Word of God

Anonymous said...

Thank you Father!
I used to have this confusion of the Trinity ever since my Holy communion, then when I studied Christianity for my 12th, it was beyond my understanding. For me it was all Jesus and the Holy Spirit which was clear to me, its recently after reading the scriptures closely and observing the mass I understood clearly the ' Father'