EXPLAINING THE TRINITY…
actually that title is wrong… the Trinity isn’t something to be explained, but encountered.
Perfect Love, edifying, indwelling, mutual.
A friend posted on facebook looking for suggestions on books to give a person with questions about the Trinity. Unfortunately I was swamped at the time and now I simply cannot remember who it was that was asking – but though I’d put this out there. One of the most beautiful and insightful reflections I’ve come across – it’s from the Jesuit daily prayer site Sacred Space (www.sacredspace.ie).
We celebrate now the feast of the Most Holy Trinity. It is a mystery, belief in which took many centuries to unfold. And we ourselves can find it a great challenge, to acquire some partial but faith-filled understanding of how our God is Trinitarian. That is, we strive to look to God as three Persons in unity, encompassed in divinely-charged and endless love, yet ‘emptied’ out for us in humblest care and vulnerability.
Ignatius of Loyola, for instance, when still a pilgrim in 1522 after his conversion, ‘had great devotion to the Most Holy Trinity, and each day he said a prayer to the three Persons individually’. At that time, while at Manresa in Spain, ‘his understanding began to be elevated’, so that he saw the Most Holy Trinity in the form of three musical keys, producing a single harmony.
There is indeed music in God, a threefold harmony, whose melody can be within our hearts. And far away in Moscow, a century before, Andrei Rublev had painted the wonderful icon of the Trinity, based on the account of the three persons who came to visit Abraham and Sarah by the oak of Mamre (Genesis 18). In that great portrait, we are being invited by the three divine persons to share the table of their hospitality, which is the Eucharistic nourishment of their love, poured out for us in the Second Person, the beloved child, who came among us as Jesus. This is what is visually portrayed for us in Rublev’s icon. But even at this moment, in our own personal moment of prayer, the truth is that we are being drawn right now within the mystery of eternal and self-emptying Trinitarian love. We are being transformed there, as Father, Son and Spirit enable us to share intimately in their divine life.
Three notes, one chord. Harmony.
An invitation to experience more deeply.