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Chaplain's Chat 14th June 2017

Trinity Sunday

Last Sunday was Trinity Sunday. The doctrine of the Trinity is the belief that there is One God who is Father, Son and Holy Spirit. The church has been grappling with the mystery of the Trinity over the centuries, and, arguably, is no closer to understanding the nature of the Trinity.

Saint Augustine suggested that if we try to understand the concept of the Trinity with our human minds, then we will “lose our minds.”  God in the Trinity is ineffable, (too great or extreme to be expressed or described in words). God as Trinity is incomprehensible. The word that we use in the church for such things is “mystery.”  The dictionary defines mystery as:
“ … something that is difficult or impossible to understand or explain.”

The Greek word ‘mysterion’ suggests that mystery refers to something “which awaits disclosure or interpretation". Whether the nature of God in the Trinity can ever be understood by the work of His hands (humankind) is also an unanswerable question. All we can do is reflect upon this mystery of the Trinity in our life of prayer, contemplation, reflection and worship.

As we reflect on the nature of the Trinity and of the relationship between the ‘three in one’, and the ‘one in three’, we can consider how this Divine relationship teaches human beings how to conduct their lives. The Trinitarian relationship is based on complete love and perfect communication. Patrick Reardon suggests that “The relationship that exists within the Godhead is the basis for unity in every human relationship, be it marriage, family or the church.” In our human relationships, we have to the balance being an individual our interactions with those whom we encounter.

As we reflect upon the mystery of the Trinity, we can make the prayer of Saint Paul our own:
“The Grace of Our Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.”

Or to use more contemporary language:
“The free and unmerited favour of Our Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God and the companionship and friendship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.”

God bless
Reverend Dave