The first Sunday after Pentecost is when we examine the concept of the Trinity, the three-in-one God, the Father AND the Son AND the Holy Spirit, one God. Some prefer to use Creator AND Redeemer AND Sustainer, because these terms remove the gender component of the former. However, in our effort to “understand” all things, we are self-driven to “humanize” God, that is to limit God by applying human (understandable) terms. Study, in your spare time, and come to the conclusion that this is not the right path. Our God is much more personal than terminology. Try to realize, instead, exactly how close to us is our God the Father and our God the Son and our God the Holy Spirit. Moreover, let’s examine what the gospel is directing us to do and GO beloved.
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The eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore 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 that I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
From sermon4kids.com: “Jesus wants us to tell everyone we meet about his love for them and share with them what he has taught us in the Bible. He didn’t say, “Send a message in a bottle,” he said, “Go and make disciples.””
Collect: Almighty and everlasting God, you have given to us your servants grace, by the confession of a true faith, to acknowledge the glory of the eternal Trinity, and in the power of your divine Majesty to worship the Unity: Keep us steadfast in this faith and worship, and bring us at last to see you in your one and eternal glory, O Father; who with the Son and the Holy Spirit live and reign, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Reflection: The Gospel from Matthew has four main verbs. What are they? Which one is the main verb? How is being a disciple different from simply being a Christian? Do you consider yourself a disciple? “Go into the world” is perhaps better translated “Going into the world . . .” Do you have a sense of being sent out into your world? How does that affect how you then shall live? What is your part in fulfilling the Great Commission?
Saint Focus: Melania the Elder is part of the Desert Mothers and Fathers. Born in Spain, she subsequently moved to Rome. She was extremely wealthy and financially supported the monks at Nitria. She was a strong proponent of asceticism as important to full spiritual growth. Much more to this story. Be sure to follow the link below for a greater description. [most from the Calendar of the church year according to the Episcopal Church.]
This week, the saints under consideration were :
- 4; [John XXIII (Angelo Guiseppe Roncalli)], Bishop & Church Reformer, 1963
- 5; Boniface, Bishop & Missionary, 754
- 6; Ini Kopuria, Founder of the Melanesian Brotherhood, 1945
- 7; The Pioneers of the Episcopal Anglican Church of Brazil, 1890
- 8; [Melania the Elder], Monastic, 410; AND Roland Allen, Mission Strategist, 1947
- 9; Columba, Abbot of Iona, 597
Eye Candy: Russian orthodox icon of the Holy Trinity by Andrei Rublev; “The Trinity” (1378), Theophanes the Greek fresco at The Church of Our Savior in Russia; “Trinity“, contemporary by Fr. Bob Gilroy
Contemporary Parables: “X-men: Days of Future Past” (2014), with theme of being called and being sent; “Babbette’s Feast” (1987), a Parisian refugee Babbette cooks for pious family; “Angela’s Ashes” (1999), story of immigrants returning to Ireland following the death of their 7 year old daughter; “The Matrix” (1999) (of course), sci-fi thriller
For Youth: “When they saw him, they worshiped him, but some doubted,” we read in Matthew 28:17. Think about doubt and faith. For us, doubt and faith are the heads/tails and two-sides-of-the-same-coin. It is important to understand that doubt and faith go together; that doubt is, indeed, part of faith, part of stewarding this mystery. If you have time, consider reading some of Mother Teresa’s story about doubt in the midst of great faith as recounted in a book, Mother Teresa: Come be my Light. Think about when you have doubt. How has that doubt been converted into faith for you? Share. [based on the SOLI website lesson “We’re not flying solo, folks” https://www.stewardshipoflife.org/2017/06/trinity-sunday-were-not-flying-solo-folks/]
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The First Sunday after Pentecost is a celebration of the Holy Trinity. This is not, however, a celebration of a doctrine, but the celebration of the God whose self-revelation is as an interaction of love between Persons. The doctrine came about as the Christian attempt in human language to express our experience of God: an experience that we are God’s children, we are the brothers and sisters of God incarnate, and we are people who find the Spirit of God living in us. Thus, the names given to God’s action toward us and God’s own being are Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
The first account of creation is our reading from the Hebrew Scriptures. While the original writers had no idea of God as the Holy Trinity, Christians have noted that in the act of creating, God, God’s Word, and the Spirit or Wind of God are used as terms for God’s action. In the New Testament reading, we hear in its concluding Grace the earliest Christian formulary of the Trinity, a passage familiar from the closing of Morning and Evening Prayer.
God is most clearly revealed as the Trinity of Persons in Unity of Being in baptism. It is there that we are adopted as children, thus made brothers and sisters of God’s Son, and filled with the Holy Spirit of God. As we celebrate the Eucharist, we find our lives as a community drawn into the community of love that we name the Holy Trinity.
From The Rite Light: Reflections on the Sunday Readings and Seasons of the Church Year. Copyright © 2007 by Michael W. Merriman. Church Publishing Incorporated, New York.