The Most Holy Trinity, Year C – Homily

The Most Holy Trinity, Year C
Provers 8:22-31
Psalm 8:4-5, 6-7, 8-9 (2a)
Romans 5:1-5
John 16:12-15
June 12, 2022

Our Easter season is over and we have resumed Ordinary Time.  Today we celebrate a special solemnity, The Most Holy Trinity. 

You will not find the word “trinity” in the Bible.  The word was first used by Tertullian in the second century.  What you will find in the Bible is the three persons of the Trinity, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

God is beyond our human comprehension.  As the psalmist says, “When I behold your heavens…what is man that you should be mindful of him.”  God is all-knowing.  God is all-powerful.  Our God is an awesome God.  We might feel insignificant to God.  Yet He is mindful of us because He loves us.

In his greatness, God is mystery.  God is three persons yet one God. 

Jesus speaks of how what He offers is beyond us, “I have much more to tell you but you cannot bear it now.”  “The Spirit of truth, he will guide you to all truth.”  Jesus does not say that with the Holy Spirit we will immediately understand all truth.  He says the Spirit will guide us to all truth.

Jesus speaks of how the Spirit “will not speak on his own.”  The Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit all work together.  As Jesus says, beginning with the Spirit, “He will glorify me, because he will take from what is mine and declare it to you.  Everything that the Father has is mine.”  They work together in perfect unity.

It is difficult for us to understand.  Several heresies came from misunderstanding the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit and how they are one. 

God is eternal.  In our first reading, Lady Wisdom speaks of how she was present at the beginning because God brought her forth.  That means God was already there.  The Lord is the alpha and the omega, the beginning and the end.

We try to put God into terms we can understand.  We can use our human words to describe God but our human words will never fully articulate God’s essence.

It is a mystery.

In this sense, mystery is not something to be solved.  We cannot “solve” the full essence of God.  It is beyond our humanness.  The word “faith” means to believe in what cannot be proven. 

God, the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, three persons yet one God is a mystery.  We are not going to fully understand it but we can believe.

The unity of the three as one lies beyond our full comprehension.  As human beings we do not have perfect unity.  Even when a man and woman marry and the two become one flesh, their unity is not perfect.

Since we cannot fully understand or experience perfect unity in this world, it might seem simpler to not talk about it or refer to it.

Yet, we invoke the Trinity every time we start Mass and every time we end Mass.  I bet you do too every time you pray on your own.

We don’t often use the word “trinity.” So, how is it that we invoke the trinity?  With the Sign of the Cross, calling upon the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

We count on them working together.  In Matthew 28:19, Jesus tells the disciples to go out, baptizing in the name of the Father, Son, and the Holy Spirit.  Jesus points us to the Trinity in prayer.

The three work together to bring us peace and love.  As Paul writes, “we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith to this grace…because the love of God has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit that has been given to us.

We know the Father because we know the Son and the Holy Spirit.

I don’t know if what I have said today makes any sense.  It is difficult to explain.  After all, it is a mystery. 

There are other mysteries in our faith, like how the bread and wine are transubstantiated into the Body and Blood of Jesus.  Science cannot prove this but we know it to be true because Jesus says this is my Body…this is my Blood.

I will end with this quote from paragraph 234 of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, “Thy mystery of the Most Holy Trinity is the central mystery of Christian faith and life.  It is the mystery of God in himself.  It is therefore the source of all the other mysteries of faith, the light that enlightens them.”

For more on the Trinity, check out my one hour presentation, Praying with the Trinity from 2020.

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