June Letter - 2020

A Reflection for Trinity Sunday

Trinity Sunday has been celebrated since 1334 when Pope John XX11 (22nd ) fixed it as the Sunday after Pentecost. It’s a Sunday which is not tied to any special event. Instead it’s a day when we remember just God himself, it’s a day for each and every one of us to focus our hearts and minds on him.

But of course when we are celebrating God we also have a conundrum, do we celebrate God the father, God the Son or God the Holy Spirit? Should we then not have three days to celebrate the Trinity, one for each?

The Trinity is so difficulty for many Christians to get their heads around let alone understand.  The Doctrine is:

1. God eternally exists as three persons, The Father, The Son, and The Holy Spirit.

2. Each person is fully God.

3. There is one God.

The Bible never uses the word Trinity, it’s something we have invented to explain the way in which we think about God. In the New Testament the problem of speaking about God in the traditional way as one God becomes more understandable, There is Jesus and perhaps the best illustration is Jesus’ baptism. When Jesus was baptised he went up immediately from the water, the heavens were opened and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and a voice from heaven saying, This is my beloved son, with whom I am well pleased.

 

So we have The Father, The Son and The Holy Spirit all in one episode. Jesus is filled with the Holy Spirit, who comes to Him from God?

So how can God be God the Father, and Jesus God the Son, and also God the Holy Spirit? The Trinity is one of those subjects which leaves everybody feeling very confused but we simply use it to describe how amazing God really is. God is so big, so wonderful and so far beyond our imaginations, that to our minds it doesn’t seem to make sense.

So if somebody comes up to you and says, go on then you're a Christian explain the Trinity then your response could be "God is much bigger and more complicated than we will ever know you can’t put him in your pocket".

 

The Trinity is an example of unity which is surely something which we must all learn as we journey in faith together. In some way it’s just like an Orchestras, an orchestra relies on different instruments playing different parts to come together.

As Paul reminds us in his first letter to the Corinthians, we are the body of Christ and a body is not a single part but made up of many. We were made to be in communion with one another, joining together to build Gods kingdom and to proclaim his gospel message.

We all know it’s a tall order, and anyone who has tried to do it alone knows that it just doesn’t work. But the Trinity is more than just a model for togetherness and unity the Trinity also gives us the power to let the Holy Spirit live through our daily lives.

Jesus promises that, as we deepen our relationship with one another, our lives will start to reflect the very life of the Trinity and that’s how we can experience the joy we are all destined to know as Christians.

Let us Pray

Holy Spirit, draw us all into the love that you share with the Father and the Son

Stir up your gifts within us, so that we may pour out that same love on one another

Amen

Paul Mallett

Lay Reader

THE CHURCH OF ENGLAND in the DIOCESE OF DURHAM

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