Some of things we hear about God are so wonderful that we cannot understand them fully. They are God’s mysteries, but we know that they are true because Jesus has told us about them. One of these mysteries is that although there is only one God, there are three Divine Persons in God. These three persons are the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. This mystery is the mystery of the Blessed Trinity.
Jesus Himself spoke many times of His Father and of the Holy Spirit. Two short prayers we say often in honour of the Blessed Trinity are the Sign of the Cross and the Glory be to the Father. The oneness of God is emphasised today even as we celebrate the mystery of the Holy Trinity. In our futile attempts to understand the divine nature, we tend to assign specific functions and characteristics to Creator, Redeemer and Sanctifier, often reducing God to a series of theological definitions.
God is One. When we pray to God as Creator, we are also invoking Jesus and the Holy Spirit. When we pray to Jesus or to The Holy Spirit, then The Creator is also present. God’s love never loses its intensity, its beauty or its power. From all eternity, this love has expressed itself through the community of the Trinity. Let us open ourselves to this unstrained love that we may overflow with the very presence of God.
We know that the love of God was poured out for us at the dawn of creation, manifesting Godself in many wonders. This love was poured out for us in the person of Jesus. In Jesus, we find a visible sign of God’s presence, His compassion and His abiding love for each of us. Through Jesus we are able to see and hear, to touch and taste, the reality of what it means to be “children of God”. Through Him, we find rest, healing and joy.
Grace, love, fellowship –these are the characteristics of the Trinity, signs of God’s presence among us. While we tend to assign specific functions to God as Creator, Redeemer and Sanctifier, theologians point out that what is true of one Person must be true of all three, for God is “One”. For many of us, the Trinity is just a symbol. We celebrate Trinity Sunday, profess our belief in the Trinity each time we recite The Nicene Creed and are vaguely familiar with catechism definitions we may have learnt as children. But, most of us have not reflected on what the Trinity means in our own lives. Are we in a relationship with the Trinity or do we simply identify with one Person of the Trinity?
The Bible does not teach us about Trinity as God-in-Godself. It tells us first about God the Father, the Creator of all in whose hands are all creatures and especially us human beings. We are “the sheep of His pasture, the flock that is led by His hands”. The Father sent His Son Jesus and was present to the world in Him so that Jesus could say: “He who sees me, sees the Father”. When Jesus died and rose from the dead to be seated at the right hand of the Father, He did not “leave us orphans” but sent the Spirit to be present to us within our lives in all the good things that we know – creation, the sun and the rain, friends and relatives and our own personalities.
All that we have, all that we are, is received from the Holy Trinity. Therefore we must give thanks and praise continuously to the Holy Trinity. We should give special thanks to the Father, because He has made us out of nothing and called us to an eternal life; to the Son, because He has redeemed us; and to the Holy Spirit, because He has made us holy. – Archdiocesan Catechetical Office