Holy trinity

June 12, 2022 – The Most Holy Trinity

Proverbs 8:22-31 + Romans 5:1-5 + John 16:12-15

“I have a lot more to tell you, but you can’t stand it now.”

The Church today celebrates the central mystery of our Christian faith. The life of the Most Holy Trinity is the mystery from which flow all the other mysteries of our Catholic faith. However, the mystery of the Most Holy Trinity is difficult to understand.

The Church, however, has learned over the centuries a simple means by which to explore this awesome mystery. The Church reflects on who God is by looking at what God has chosen to do. This principle has a very technical name: “The apple does not fall far from the tree”.

This principle is easily seen in families. You have a parent, and you have a child, and about the child you say, “That apple didn’t fall far from the tree.” When you say that, everyone knows what you mean. The child resembles its parent.

We hear a divine example of the “apple principle” in today’s First Reading of the Old Testament. Book of Proverbs. In this passage is a speech delivered by “the wisdom of God”. In the second half of the speech, we hear two intriguing statements. Wisdom not only says, “When the Lord established the heavens, I was there” but also, “then I was beside him as his craftsman…and found pleasure in the human race.”

Wisdom belongs to the Lord “artisan”who “finds pleasure in the human race.” Everything that God created in the universe was created wisely, that is, was created in an orderly way, because God himself is very wise and his apples do not fall far from the tree.

Nevertheless, of all of God’s creation, it is “in the human race” this wisdom takes special delight. At the beginning—at book of genesis– we hear the Lord say, “Let us make man in our image, according to our likeness” [Genesis 1:26]. In other words, the apple that is the human race did not fall far from the tree, and is in fact the apple of God’s eye. [see Psalm 17:8].

In today’s Responsorial Psalm, the psalmist cries out in wonder to God, asking, “When I behold your skies, the work of your fingers… What is man that you remember him…? [Yet] You did it a little less than the angels…You gave him dominion over the works of your hands”. In other words, because God created mankind in his image and likeness, God gave mankind a part of his “to rule over the works of [God’s] hands”. Or, as we might rather say today, God has entrusted to man the stewardship of the works of his hands.

All of this, of course, raises two questions that lead us to the heart of today’s feast: #1: what is the image and likeness of God; and #2: what is God’s work? The answer to both is simple, because the answer to both is the same: to love. The image and likeness of God is love, and the work of God is the work of love.

“God is love” [1 John 4:8]. Because God is love through and through – because God is 100% love – everything God does is love. There is no divorce between who God is and what He does. The divine Image must be love, and so we too are called to always do what is love in all circumstances.

To help us in this regard, Holy Mother Church teaches us through the Holy Liturgy. One could say that last Sunday, this Sunday and next Sunday form a triptych: a three-panel icon that concentrates our devotion. Pentecost, Trinity Sunday and Corpus Christi show before us the Holy Spirit in the Church, the Father who is the Source of the Trinity and the Blessed Sacrament of the Real Presence of Our Saviour.

Prepare for the feast of Corpus Christi next Sunday to grow in your capacity to love: to be love through your daily choices. The Sacrifice of Christ on Calvary, made sacramentally present through the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, shows us sinners our clearest example of what it means to “be love” through a human will and heart. Rather than loving only those who are lovable, and only when circumstances make it easy, Christ calls us and strengthens us through the Eucharist to live and love from within his sacrificial love, and thus enter more deeply into the Life of the Trinity.