By FR. BEL SAN LUIS, SVD
Fr. Bel R. San Luis, SVD
Once a pious woman who was bringing a bunch of novena booklets to church met the parish priest. He asked, "Who is your favorite saint?" "Of course, I like the Blessed Virgin Mary best! But I also like her sister!"
"Sister? Who is she?" asked the priest. "Santa Trinidad."
Of course, the Virgin Mary had no sister and the amusing story only proves how difficult it is to understand the doctrine of the “Santa Trinidad.”
* * *This Sunday is the feast of the Holy Triune God—Father, Son, Holy Spirit. In arithmetic we say 1+1+1 equals 3 but with the Holy Trinity it's 1+1+1 equals 1! This is because the three Persons are distinct but have only one divine nature.
A close-to-home example is the three-in-one coffee. It has three different elements: coffee, cream, and sugar, but only one coffee.
* * *“What is the significance to me if God is three Persons but one God?” one might ask. God communicated Himself through His Son Jesus and the Trinitarian family to mankind in a language that could be felt, touched, heard, and easily understood.
* * *Through Jesus’ life and teachings, God revealed God’s main attribute which is love. “God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son" (Jn 3,16). Jesus further said: “If anyone loves Me, he will keep my word. Then my Father will love him and We shall…make our dwelling place with him” (Jn 14,23).
* * *Love is the bond that unites the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Thus the more we practice love, the more we live the Trinity, not as an incomprehensible mystery, but as a living reality.
* * *The family becomes a little Holy Trinity when family members love, care, and respect one another.
Once a young boy, doing his homework, approached his father and asked: “Papa, how do wars begin?” The father answered, “War begins when, for example, the USA attacks Britain, and Britain retaliates.”
* * *The mother, who was within hearing distance, frowned and butted in: “How could that happen? USA and Britain are allies!” “But that’s just an example!” the husband growled. “And how do you expect a child to learn with wrong examples!” the wife shot back.
* * *Irked, the husband replied, “Would you shut up!” “You shut up, too!” the wife snapped. “What you’re teaching is wrong!” And the two shouted at each other. The son raised his voice and said: “Papa, Mama, that’s enough! Now I know how wars begin.”
The story illustrates that intolerance of others opinions — right or wrong — can cause conflicts and hurt feelings which are very difficult to heal.
* * *When that happens, what’s important is that the wound should be treated with real sorrow, which goes with a resolve to reform; otherwise it leaves a permanent scar which can lead to separation or to the marriage tribunal. But loving someone deeply, completely, demands a bigness, a bigness that can say, "I'm sorry" — and really mean it! As the dictum puts it: “Marriage is a union of two forgivers.”
* * *Let’s be more aware of the oft-forgotten Trinity when we recite the Trinitarian prayer: “Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit…” The same when we make the Sign of the Cross.
* * *Today, FATHER’S DAY, we greet and pray for all fathers — good or bad, married, separated, or widowed; wise or otherwise.
* * *Here’s a timely counsel from the book of Sirach, “My son, take care of your father when he is old, grieve him not as long as he lives. Even if his mind fails, be considerate with him…For kindness to a father will not be forgotten, it will serve as a sin offering.” (Sir. 3, 2-6).
* * *HEAD OF FAMILY. St. Paul avers: "But I want you to know that the head of every man is Christ, the head of woman is man, and the head of Christ is God.” (1 Corinthians 11:3).
But headship is service, guidance, sacrifice; not domination!
* * *SEMINARIANS’ APPEAL. It’s enrolment time again. I’m appealing to our generous readers to help our seminarians in their educational formation. Please remember that we cannot have priests and bishops without seminarians
You may chip in an amount or sponsor a seminarian’s schooling for a year.
* * *For inquiries, e-mail me at: email@example.com.