‘Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit’
On Trinity Sunday we celebrate a doctrine rather than an event. The doctrine of the Blessed Trinity was promulgated at the First Council of Nicea in 325 AD after years of debate and it brings us to the heart of the mystery of God. The English word ‘Trinity’ comes from the Latin ‘Trinitas’, meaning ‘the number three’. ‘Our God is Father, Son and Spirit. The Father is God, the Son is God, and the Holy Spirit is God and yet there are not three Gods but one God’. Images help us to enter this deepest of mysteries. St. Patrick is reputed to have used a shamrock to explain the doctrine to the Irish, while St. Ignatius of Loyola used the image of three distinct musical notes played at the same time to produce a single chord. We invoke the Blessed Trinity as we make the sign of the cross at the beginning and end of every prayer. This simple, profound gesture affords us the opportunity to deepen our relationship with Father, Son and Spirit. A practical suggestion here might help. As you touch the forehead ask the Father to make your thoughts right. As you touch the breast, ask the Son to make your heart right. As you touch the shoulders, ask the Holy Spirit to make the work of our hands right. The sign of the cross prayed reflectively makes the Blessed Trinity ‘real’
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