Sunday, June 16, 2019
Solemn Feast Of The Holy Trinity
(Radio Mass) June 16,2019
My Sisters and Brothers in the Faith:
Today, with the whole Church throughout the world, we celebrate the mystery of God’s unfathomable love revealed to us in the relationship and community of Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Their shared and interactive love for one another discloses the face and presence of God to us who stand in awe of their fellowship of love.
Listen, once again, to Paul’s words to the Romans: “We have peace with God, who is our Father, through our Lord Jesus Christ…because the love of God has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.” In a word, you and I, all of us, are continually living within the community and fellowship of God whose name is Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Reflecting on this Trinitarian mystery, over 800 years ago, the Cistercian Mystic, St. Bernard of Clairvaux, preached the following sermon:
“If we are right to think that God the Father gives the Kiss and the Son receives the kiss, we do not err in saying that the kiss itself is the Holy Spirit,that is to say, the one that, between the Father and the Son, is unalterable peace, the strong link, the undivided love, the unbreakable unity.”
The former rector of St. Mary’s Seminary, Fr. Bob Leavitt, put it a different way when he says that “the Father is forever at a distance because he is the eternal bliss of God. Knowable only through his self-disclosure in the Son,and in the Holy Spirit,the Fatheris and remains forever ‘Pure Silence.’ The Sonis like us in so far as he stands before us visibly and tangibly present in the face and body of Christ. But it is the Holy Spirit who dwells within us, pulsing and breathing within our souls opening us to and enlightening us about God’s Trinitarian life and identity.”
It is ourTrinitarian God,therefore, this circle of love, this community of fiery intimacy, this endless embrace of infinite affection that we celebrate in today’s Solemn Feast. It is our Trinitarian God whom we encounter in all our communal prayers and sacramental celebrations when we gather as God’s people. It is our Trinitarian God who is revealed to us when we prayerfully meditate on the scriptures of the New Testament. It is our Trinitarian God whom the mystics and the saints of the church encountered in their prayers and labors. And finally, it is our Trinitarian God whom we ourselves seek every time we pray and minister to others in the name of Jesus. French Benedictine Henri Le Saux succinctly grasps the core and truth of today’s Feast of the Most Holy Trinity in these insightful words from his treatise on prayer:
“From the day when we began to believe
in Christ and to acknowledge him as our Lord, there is not a single moment of our time… which is not marked by the claim of God upon us and which has not to be lived in the name of Jesus, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit,to the glory of the Father.”
This morning, then, in the presence of our Trinitarian God, we now pray the Apostles’ Creed, taught to us when we were children, a proclamation of blessing, a proclamation of praise, a proclamation of gratitude for our God who is Father, Son and Spirit. Therefore, together we stand and pray:
“I believe in God, the Father almighty, Creator of heaven and earth, and in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died and was buried; he descended into hell; on the third day he rose again from the dead; he ascended into heaven, and is seated at the right hand of God the Father almighty; from there he will come to judge the living and the dead. I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and life everlasting.” Amen.
Bill Watters, S.J.
Solemn Feast of the Most Holy Trinity
June 16, 2019
Saint Ignatius Church
Baltimore, MD 21202