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5/22/16 The Most Holy Trinity - Deacon Ron

Homily Summary Solemnity of the Holy Trinity ~ Deacon Landry


Our Catechism describes the mystery of the Most Holy Trinity as "the most fundamental and essential teaching in the 'hierarchy of the truths of faith.'" In theology, mystery means "a supernatural fact revealed by God which in itself transcends the natural power of human reasoning." In a word, it must be accepted on faith. This dogma distinguishes Christianity from all other religions. Christians alone believe in one God, who nonetheless exists in three persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

Jesus understood his days on earth were numbered. His ministry had been initiated, but his disciples were only just beginning to grasp who and what Jesus Christ and his ministry were all about. Well aware of the weaknesses and limitations of his disciples, Jesus recognized that they did not clearly or fully understand true discipleship. He also anticipated their dwindling faith and increased discouragement when faced with his coming absence.

However, our Savior makes undeniably clear that the disciples will not be left on their own when he leaves to be reunited with our Almighty Father in Heaven. In the readings of the past few weeks, we have heard the Son of God promise the apostles that the "Advocate," the Holy Spirit" would come from the Father after Jesus leaves them; declaring that he must leave for the Advocate to come, and assures that it will be much to the advantage of his disciples that the Advocate should come, explaining that finally the truth about sin and righteousness will be made clear.

There is a certain exquisite irony that the very foundation of our faith—belief in the Holy Trinity—is impossible for the faithful to fully understand. What is so awesomely beautiful, however, is the hope it gives each and everyone of us. The mysteries of our faith do not require our understanding—they require our faith. St. Augustine tells us: "Understanding is the reward of faith. Therefore, seek not to understand that you may believe, but believe that you may understand."

The news is the same for his disciples today as it was then. There is so much more that he wants us to learn and understand. There is so much more to be said and to be done. And in one of the greatest mysteries of all, it is we who have been commissioned with the continuation of the ministry of Jesus Christ.

However, we are just human beings, weak and limited. How can we be expected to carry on the ministry of the Son of God? It is challenging enough for us to comprehend the mysteries of our own human existence—how can we be counted upon to function some two thousand years after our Savior died on the Cross and then returned to the Father in Heaven? This is well beyond human comprehension; well beyond human capability. How can we, as human beings be expected to achieve the superhuman?

And our answer—on this, the Solemnity of the Holy Trinity—is awesomely expressed in the words our Savior left us: "...the Spirit of truth...will guide you to all truth. He will take from what is mine and declare it to you."

This Feast of the Solemnity of the Holy Trinity cannot be overstated. Yes, it is beyond our capacity to fully understand the mystery and reality of the Holy Trinity. However, every time we pronounce the Sign of the Cross, we acknowledge our faith in this foundational concept of our faith. And so, as Catholic Christians, everything we say and do is in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.


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