Trinity Sunday


TrinityPreaching a homily on the subject of the Blessed Trinity is always a difficult task.  In the 15th century the monk, Andrew Rublev, had the same difficulty when trying to teach his fellow monks the doctrine.  He wrote his famous icon name ‘The Trinity’ or sometimes ‘Hospitality’.

The icon told the s
tory of the visit to Abraham of three angels.  They had come on a journey to the place of the Oaks of Mamre to announce to Abraham and Sarah that they were to have a child.  Abraham and Sarah entertained them to a meal and the icon shows the three angels sitting at a table.  The table is seen as an altar of sacrifice.

The three angels took on representation of Father, Son and Holy Spirit.  In typical icon style the colour blue indicates divinity.  The principal garment of the angels representing the Father and the Holy Spirit is coloured blue.  The Father wears a golden patriarchal cloak while the Holy Spirit has a green shawl indicating growth and new life.  The angel standing for The Son wears a garment of red, representative of humanity, with a blue shawl.

The angels sit in a circle.  There is no primary position because they are equal and united in their mission.  They each bear a staff of authority and the actions of their hands display blessing, the mission of redemption and the guidance of grace.

The opening in the circle speaks to us an invitation.  An invitation to come into the circle, to come into the presence, to come into the community that they form.  By accepting the invitation and spending time within the community of Father, Son and Spirit we inevitably come to KNOW God, Father Son and Spirit. 

And in knowing God we know the Love which God is.  “For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life.” (John 3:16)

“The Spirit you received is …. The spirit of children and makes us cry “Abba, Father!”  If we are children we are heirs as well: heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, sharing his sufferings so as to share his glory.” (Romans 8:14-17)

That is the Mystery!  A mystery that can only be taken in by what we call Faith.  Abraham, our father in faith, our model of Faith displayed for us and towards God a Faith that was itself a mystery.  In the background of Rublev’s icon there stands the tree, the Oak of Mamre to remind us that we are members of that house of Faith where Abraham encountered the Blessed Trinity.

Let us pray for a strengthening of our Faith so that we can worthily say; Glory, to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit.  Amen