Browsing Homilies

The Most Holy Trinity (Solemnity)

Prv 8:22-31 | Ps 8 | Rom 5:1-5 | Jn 16:12-15

Last week, the great season of Easter ended with the giant exclamation point of the feast of Pentecost! But since the Church really likes to do things in threes, we might say the Easter season really ends with the three Sunday feasts of exclamation points: Pentecost, the Most Holy Trinity, and the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ (Corpus Christi).

I am sure there are many who are tasked with homiletics (myself included) who take a deep breath when pondering how best to preach on a theological dogma like the Trinity. After all, how do we possibly get our minds around the understanding of one God who is three Persons? Well, I’d suggest the same way we “get our minds around” what we celebrate at Christmas: the understanding that our infinite God became a finite man; or the way we grasp that the crucified, dead, and buried Jesus was raised to new and eternal life; or the way we grasp that ordinary, uneducated fisherman laid the foundations for a Church that has lived on for over two-thousand years!

We dare to embrace these truths of faith—not based on our ability to comprehend—but based on our willingness to be open to the wonderful possibilities of what God can do!

So, there’s a great mystery that we celebrate today, and while we might not truly “understand” this mystery, we don’t have to remain silent either – because I think there’s something about God as Trinity (three Persons in one God) that reveals something about God to which we can relate, and that something is “relationship.”

Jesus revealed to us that God is our Father, which is a very particular relationship. Jesus also taught us that God is love. Love, of course, is a binding force that drives our relationships. Love never exists in a vacuum, and in order for love to be real and actualized, it has to be shared. Love is dynamic and very experiential. Since God is love, it makes sense that in God’s very being, God is relational. That is the nature of love. The heart of trinitarian theology teaches us that the love relationship between the Father and the Son (the One who creates and the One who redeems) is the outpouring of the Holy Spirit (the One who sanctifies).

Our readings this weekend all emphasize the eternal presence and workings of the Holy Spirit: Wisdom reminds us that the Spirit was with the Father and the Son before Creation ever came into being. Saint Paul reminds us that God’s love is poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit. And in John’s gospel, Jesus teaches us that since the immensity of God’s revelation of self and his plan of salvation for the world is too much for us to take in, the Holy Spirit will “guide [us] to all truth.”

So, as we ponder this great mystery of God’s revelation of self, we celebrate our God as a Trinity of Persons (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit) whose very being—as love—is a perfect union of relationship. The unity of our God teaches us that we can never be without the other. We are not islands. We are in the world to live in God’s image: open, in need of others, and in need of helping others.

Today, we celebrate the union of Persons, who from the beginning of time, has created us, redeemed us, and continues to sanctify and guide us in our life-long journey of growing in the likeness of Love – until that unfathomable day when that very source of Love that willed each one of us into existence, welcomes us home – where all divisions will cease, all violence be forgotten, every wound healed, every numbered tear wiped away, and the fullness of life is at last found in the eternal embrace of our God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.


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