Trinity Sunday, Homily June 3, 2012
As usual on Trinity Sunday I have brought out Rublev’s icon of the Blessed Trinity. It is such a beautiful image of the Trinity… In reference to that icon, in reference to the Mystery – namely the communion of love and life between Father, Son and Spirit – that the icon tries to capture I have had one of the most rewarding experiences of my ministry among you.
A number of years ago, on a Trinity Sunday, I had brought out the icon and reflected on it. After Mass a lady approached me. She was not a parishioner, but she had been with us for some time to care for her dying mother. She informed me that her mother’s death was imminent; she wanted to make arrangements for the funeral. The following day we met. Such a meeting usually involves talking about the deceased or dying person, what Scripture readings would be proclaimed, what hymns to sing or not to sing, whether there is going to be a eulogy or not. Then the lady made a request that really baffled me for a moment: “Could we have the icon of the Trinity close to my mother’s casket, please?” What struck me was that the lady had grasped what that icon is all about. How so? You may wonder.
When it comes to the Mystery of the Trinity it is better not to wrestle with one-in-three or three-in-one or with shamrocks or triangles… As Bernadette Gasslein suggests, begin with love. It is love poured out, love given, love received and shared. That is the essence of this mystery.
And think love in motion, love moving between persons whom we name as Father, Son and Spirit. It is, as an earlier tradition has it, a dance between three equal lovers who have nothing else to do but love… the divine dance.
And you know what? We have all been baptized in the name of the Father, Son and Spirit. What that really means is that at our baptism we have been drawn into the divine dance. We share in the life of the Trinity. There is a place for us in the communion of love and life that God Father, Son and Spirit is.
We live in the Trinity. The communion of love and life is our anchorage. ‘Trinity is our home address’. From the time of our baptism we have been caught up in the dance that is love poured out, handed over, returned, shared. This love is our highest calling, it is our ultimate destiny, our lasting home.
We are invited into the communion of love that is God Father, Son and Spirit. ‘Let us ignore our two left feet. Let God lead us in the best dance of our life.’
( A fair bit taken, with much appreciation, from Bernadette Gasslein’s reflections in Living with Christ, June 19, 2011)