PARAGUAY, by Fr. Oscar Iván Saldivar •
I must tell you that during my first years of theological studies, the study of the mystery of the Blessed Trinity was one of my favorite topics. Not only because of the intellectual impediments of the topic, or because of the rational effort that the Church has made for centuries trying to understand something about this God who is One and who reveals himself as Father, Son and Holy Spirit, but also because of the affective impediments which the Trinitarian mystery has for us men.
A Trinitarian God is a God who speaks to us about the importance of attachments between people, of the importance of relationships, of how important – and even fundamental – are others in the make-up of our personality. The mystery of the Trinitarian God is the mystery of mankind, of mankind and his attachments, of an attached mankind.
To be a person and to be alive always implies a relationship with others
Something in our liturgical calendar that catches my attention is the absence of a date, a feast dedicated only to the person of God the Father… Recently, we celebrated Pentecost – the great feast of the Holy Spirit – and days when we remember Jesus, the Son, are extant – let us think about Easter and Christmas. However this is not due to an error or a mistake, but, simply due to the fact that the face of the Father is revealed to us, shown to us, not like a solitary face, but like the face of a person in communion with the Son and the Holy Spirit. We could say that the Father needs the Son and the Holy Spirit to be who He is. His divinity does not consist in self-sufficiency but in His ability to be in relationship.
And in fact, we see it in Holy Scripture. Both the Son and the Spirit cry “Abba! Father!” (Romans 8:14-17). And because the Son and the Holy Spirit acknowledge Him as Father, the Father knows who He is, the Father knows He is One and knows He is loved. We could therefore also say that the Father is one person, because to be a person and to be alive always implies a relationship with others.
If what is relational is constitutive in God, how much more in us who are created in his image and likeness? In fact, we become people in contact with others, in the attachments that surround us with our land and with ourselves. We need others to discover ourselves and to give ourselves to others. And others need us, each one is important, unique and unrepeatable always and if we remain in the attachment in the love. When we truly stop attaching ourselves – from within – we stop being people and we are transformed into objects into things.
When Jesus gives us the missionary mandate to go out to the whole world and baptize the people in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit (Mt. 28:16-20), He does not only refer to a ritual but to a deeper reality. It is about learning how to attach oneself and learning to be human: it is about submerging ourselves into the Divine Life and to participate in it. It is about each one of us becoming a child so that in the Holy Spirit each one of us can wholeheartedly cry: “Father!”
And this is the mission of the Blessed Mother in the Shrine: always make us more Christian, become more like Christ, the Son, who knows He is loved by the Father in unconditional attachment to the Holy Spirit of Love. We desire the grace to participate in the life of God and to learn to live attached like God. Amen.
Photo: Image of the Blessed Trinity in the Jesuit Missions.
Original: Spanish. Translation: Carlos Cantú, La Feria, USA