Gospel Reflection for Trinity Sunday
3rd June 2012
For all who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God. For you did not receive a spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received a spirit of adoption. When we cry, “Abba! Father!” it is that very Spirit bearing witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs, heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ—if, in fact, we suffer with him so that we may also be glorified with him.”
(Romans 8:14–17 NRSV)
Now 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.”
(Matthew 28:16–20 NRSV)
The readings indicate more the activity of the Trinity than give an explanation of what it might mean that God is Father, Son and holy Spirit. We are introduced to the idea of the forgiveness, the tenderness of God, and the salvation of the human race by Jesus. We are the people formed by the love and developed in the mercy of God. Our second reading asks us to live in this love of the Trinity.
God is Forgiving
The predominant quality of God in the Scripture is his forgiveness. Even the first reading, in the context of the ten commandments on the stone tablets, ends up with the confident prayer for forgiveness.
We need that message of God. In the midst of all our desires to do good, to love the significant people in our lives and to care for the poor, is our personal cluster of faults and failings and sin. Each of us needs the forgiveness of God. This comes at the beginning of Mass, and in the sacrament of Reconciliation.
Sin and Weakness
In our sin and our weakness, we can feel lost. The picture of God today is the One who comes into the world, the Son of the Father, and whose spirit is the Spirit of love and forgiveness. We can allow that grace touch us as we read this reflection and as we hear the words of God for today. When we live in the presence of God, we live in an atmosphere and an ecology of forgiveness.
To forgive others can be difficult and is a long journey sometimes. A step in forgiving is to pray for someone who has hurt or damaged us. This can give a distance between ourselves and the one who has hurt us: the grace of God in each of our lives can help us move on with less hurt and bitterness. Because we are loved by God, we know in a deep place the grace of such loving forgiveness.
Forgive us our sins Lord in your great love for your people.
Donal Neary SJ