On the Gospel of Matthew 28:16-20
Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity
The Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity, which falls on the Sunday immediately after Pentecost Sunday, is one of the few feasts in the Church that celebrates a reality and doctrine rather than event or a saint. The feast celebrates Father, Son and Holy Spirit, distinct persons yet in union with each other as one. The Trinity is a mystery which we will only come to know fully in the beatific vision of heaven until then it remains a mystery inviting us to wonder at and become more familiar with and even enjoy. We believe that this communion of three persons is yet one God. The history of the Church shows that over the centuries there have been many heresies, councils, much debates and oceans of ink used up as the Church has wondered at this mystery. The simplest way of explaining this wonderful mystery is to compare it three distinct musical notes, each with a different sound, together as one they make a dynamic sound, a single note. Another way of picturing this mystery is as a sheet of paper with three folds, it still remains one sheet of paper. Each of the three persons, distinct in themselves yet unity in a communion. We experience them in sacred revelation as Father as the creator, the Son redeemer and the Spirit the sanctifier. We speak of the different persons of the Trinity and so we attribute names, qualities. Yet most importantly the three persons are united as one God and that is the mystery that we on earth can’t fully comprehend until we see God face to face in heaven, when all will be revealed to us.
We read in today’s Gospel that Jesus gives his Disciples his final command. He sends them out to carry on his work. He tells them that they must go and make disciples of the nations, teaching them and most importantly baptising them, “in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.” Baptism is an outward sign of that inward washing, or sanctification of the Spirit, which seals and evidences the believer’s justification. It is through baptism that Christ wants to reveal himself to us, to follow him and enter into the life of the Trinity. He calls us every day to fulfill the role of our communion with him, and through him in the power of the Spirit to live in union with the Father. How? As believers we must have a constant presence of the Trinity in our daily lives, in everything that we do, in all we say, in the people that we meet. As disciples blessed in the Trinity we are called to be Christ-like, to always do to others as Christ has done for us, to live in his Spirit. In this way finding a place in our hearts for the Trinity, allowing the Father, Son and Spirit to be part of our lives and for us to continue the mission of Christ on earth. Without the Trinity nothing is possible, without the Trinity there is no life, there is emptiness.
Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted.Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
– Mt 28:16-20