May 27, 2018 – Feast of the Most Holy Trinity
Scripture readings for today’s liturgy
Deutertonomy 4:32-34, 39-40 – Psalms 33:34- 6, 9,1819, 20-22 – Romans 8:14-17 –Matt 28:16-20
Jesus said to the disciples, “Go, therefore and make disciples of all nations … and behold, I am with you always, until the end of the age.”
We remember, in many of the post-resurrection appearances, how Jesus kept saying, “Don’t cling to me … but GO out…tell this good news…”
This is where the quote from G.K. Chesterton makes sense: “It’s not that Christianity has been tried – and failed. It’s more that it hasn’t really been tried completely!”
Most of us are insecure people who don’t like to get stuck in the unknown. We want to have a good, solid handle on everything so much so that we often flee back into a locked upper room where – at least – we can find some security. Still Jesus says, “Go out!” and most of us say, “But I don’t know what I’m supposed to say/do. I’m no theologian so what’s my role?”
This reminds me of the story of the Archbishop who came to the parish for Confirmation. As he began his questioning of the children he asked them, “Who can explain what the Holy Trinity is all about?” Of course there was nervous quiet and shuffling and finally one youngster mumbled an answer. The Archbishop said, “Sorry I don’t understand what you said.” Again the kid mumbled and the Archbishop repeated his “I don’t understand! To which the lad blurted out, “Of course you don’t understand! It’s a Mystery!”
So, what can we do to get a little closer to what this mystery is all about?
In the time after Easter we were hearing Jesus’, from John’s Gospel, saying over and over, “That they may be one, Father, as you and I are one … and that I am going so as to allow the Holy Spirit to come upon them.”
St. Augustine says, “Look at yourself: you see that you exist and that you have a mind and a will. These are three dimensions of your reality, and yet you are one. Each of us is a kind of trinity: three in one and one in three.” Did that help?
In one sense, God is like a community and wants to share that with us. We all know the problems that come when we try to live in any kind of community: family, social, religious. Our human fragility so often breaks it down and we have a tendency to say, “It’s not working! Let me set out on my own!”
But we should know that that wouldn’t work any better. Jesus sent them out two by two. That’s what St. Dominic did with his early friars: two by two. And this will only work if we are all/both focused on the person of Jesus and guided by the Holy Spirit. Community is difficult but basic and necessary. Jesus isn’t looking for “lone-riders” and our salvation is in some ways conditional on our ability to work with that other guy. That person, who we often think of as impossible to work with, is probably going to be our ticket to heaven. WOW! And Amen!