A moment of contemplation for yourself or on behalf of others on everything from the life-altering to the mundane.

Prayer: A conversation with The Higher Other who lives within each of us. An invitation to vent, to re-think, to ask, and to rest.

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Prayers of the People: Thinking Outside the Triangle, Trinity Sunday '17 Yr A

For Sunday, June 11, 2017, Trinity Sunday, Year A, Readings: Genesis 1:1-2:4a, Canticle 13, 2 Corinthians 13:11-13, Matthew 28:16-20

        In the beginning...God created the heavens and the earth...God said, "Let there be light...called the dry land Earth and the waters seas...Let the Earth put forth vegetation...and living creatures of every kind...Let us make humankind in our image, according to our likeness" and God saw everything that he had made, and...it was very good. [Genesis 1:1]

        Glory to you, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit; we will praise you and highly exalt you forever. [Canticle 13 from the Song of the 3 Young Men]

       The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with all of you. [2 Corinthians 13:13]

       Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them...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]

         A mystery, if explained, is no longer a mystery. The mystery of the Trinity is nothing if not confounding and controversial. One God/Three Persons - separate yet one, equal with different roles that are ultimately the same, belief in one is meant to be belief in all and the One that is the same but different. Got that?
        Franciscan theologian Richard Rohr tells us that "...the Western Church overemphasized the individual "names" Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, but not so much the quality of the relationships between them, which is where all the power and meaning lies!" And further, "The real and essential point is how the three "persons" relate to one another--infinite outpouring and infinite receiving..."
        Rohr tells us that "...Niels Bohr, [a Danish physicist who was a major contributor to quantum physics and nuclear fission] said the universe is 'not only stranger than we think, but stranger than we can think...' The doctrine of the Trinity is saying the same thing: God is not only stranger than we think, but stranger than we can think...Perhaps much of the weakness of the first 2,000 years of reflection on most of our doctrines and dogmas is that we've tried to understand them with a logical or rational mind instead of through love, prayer, and participation itself..." Perhaps we are called, as one mystic suggested, to be almost a fourth person in the flow of God...[to read the piece in its entirety, click the link: Richard Rohr's Daily Meditation, The Trinity]
        If rational knowing all that God is becomes the substance and goal of our faith, aren't we merely reducing God to our level and then dismissing all that God is? Otherwise, how does one claim to have faith[see John 20:24-29, Doubting Thomas] 
      One of my favorite ways to attempt a kind of explanation/understanding is through a piece of a 6th century creed from Dublin known as Tírechán’s Creed ~ when speaking of God it says:

He has a Son who is co-eternal with himself;
   and similar in all respects to himself;
   and neither is the Son younger than the Father,
   nor is the Father older than the Son;
   and the Holy Spirit breathes in them.
And the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit are inseparable.

       If we think outside the Triangle that was developed to try to contain and explain, perhaps we can arrive at the beginning where all things are possible with God. So, now that the mystery of the Trinity is solved, any questions?


Leader:  ~ Divine and Blessed Trinity, You have created the heavens, the earth, all means of life, and, in Your own Image, humanity. You have granted us the redemption of our sins, and set the fire of Pentecost within us. All that keeps us from a life wholly dedicated to you is ourselves.

                                                All Glory to our Triune God!                                         
RESPONSE:             Let us praise You and highly exalt You forever

~ Divine and Blessed Trinity, with our God-given intellects, the love of Christ, and the courage of the Spirit, we each have abilities to exhort the leaders of this World, this Nation, and this Community, to answer Your call to serve the best interests of ALL people, and this planet, with justice, mercy, and in peace. We pray especially for: add your own petitions

                                                All Glory to our Triune God!
                                                Let us praise You and highly exalt You forever
~ Divine and Blessed Trinity, grant extra grace of hope and healing upon those who are ill in mind, body, or spirit, and continuing strength and perseverance to those who give them care. We now join our voices to pray aloud for those in need… add your own petitions

                                                All Glory to our Triune God!
                                                Let us praise You and highly exalt You forever
~ Divine and Blessed Trinity, our heartfelt thanksgivings rise with those who have left this earthly experience, lifted into eternal joy and bliss, as reward for lives well lived in You. We pray especially for: add your own petitions 

                                                All Glory to our Triune God!
                                                Let us praise You and highly exalt You forever

~ Divine and Blessed Trinity, we pause in this moment to offer You our other heartfelt intentions and petitions, aloud or silently… add your own petitions

                                                All Glory to our Triune God!
                                                Let us praise You and highly exalt You forever
~ Divine and Blessed Trinity, bestow peace of heart, strength of mind, and courage of conviction for all You have called and blessed as guides for our souls in this life. Hold us fast as we journey together toward everlasting life in Your Holy of Holies. We pray especially for: add your own petitions

                                                All Glory to our Triune God!
                                                Let us praise You and highly exalt You forever

The Celebrant adds:  Eternal and Infinite Whole, One and All, we are each endowed with Your essence to guide us in all that we do, and think, and pray. Embolden our souls to limit mere temporal diversions and seek our ultimate fulfillment in humble service to Your call. We beseech You as our Most Holy Creator, our Messiah Christ, and our Sacred Spirit, Who together are One God, forever and ever.  Amen.

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