Wednesday, June 03, 2015

Chriostai Notes for Trinity Sunday

First Reading — Deuteronomy 4:32-34, 39-40 

32 “For ask now of the days that are past, which were before you, since the day that God created man upon the earth, and ask from one end of heaven to the other, whether such a great thing as this has ever happened or was ever heard of. 33 Did any people ever hear the voice of a god speaking out of the midst of the fire, as you have heard, and still live? 34 Or has any god ever attempted to go and take a nation for himself from the midst of another nation, by trials, by signs, by wonders, and by war, by a mighty hand and an outstretched arm, and by great terrors, according to all that the LORD your God did for you in Egypt before your eyes? … 39 know therefore this day, and lay it to your heart, that the LORD is God in heaven above and on the earth beneath; there is no other. 40 Therefore you shall keep his statutes and his commandments, which I command you this day, that it may go well with you, and with your children after you, and that you may prolong your days in the land which the LORD your God gives you for ever.”

1. Moses heard the voice of God from a burning bush. Where do you hear the voice of God? In friends … the poor … newspapers … Pope Francis … nature … novels … music ... your heart? Moses couldn’t imagine anything comparable to the love God had shown his people. What, in God’s plan of salvation, was Moses not aware of?

2. In this First Testament reading where do you see manifestations of God as Father (creator)? God as Son (savior)? God as Holy Spirit (sheer love)?

3. What are the promises revealed in these passages? 

4. Why do you think the Israelites’ well being and long life was directly tied to their obedience to the Scripture?

Second Reading — Romans 8:14-17 

14 For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. 15 For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the spirit of sonship. When we cry, “Abba! Father!” 16 it is the Spirit himself bearing witness with our spirit that we are children of God, 17 and if children, then heirs, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him. 

1. The Spirit—besides revealing God’s being to us as endless and constantly new love—bears witness together with our spirit. How do you think your prayers of thanksgiving, petition and worship are changed when the Spirit takes them and bears witness with them?

2. “We are ... heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ.” What do we inherit with and in Christ? Which treasures do you want the most? Which do you need the most?

3. What does it mean to “be led by the Spirit of God”? 

4. How would you explain the significance of being heirs of God, and fellow heirs with Christ?

Gospel Reading — Matthew 28:16-20 16 

Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. 17 And when they saw him they worshiped him; but some doubted. 18 And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 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, 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, to the close of the age.” 

1. The Holy Spirit was put in our hearts that “we might understand the things freely given by God” (1 Cor. 2:12). Is the Trinity one of those things? But how can this be since the Trinity is a mystery?

2. What do you think Pope Francis means when he says below that God is the origin and the goal of the whole universe? What is the Holy Spirit’s job according to the Pope?
The Solemnity of the Holy Trinity … leads us to contemplate and worship the divine life of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit: a life of communion and perfect love, origin and goal of the whole universe and every creature, God.

The Holy Spirit, gift of the risen Jesus communicates the divine life to us and thus he draws us into the dynamism of the Trinity, which is a dynamism of love, communion, mutual service, sharing.
Remarks before recitation of the Angelus,Feast of the Holy Trinity, June 16, 2014

3. How do you respond to the fact that some of Jesus’ original eleven disciples doubted?

4. How do you feel when doubts enter your thinking? How do you handle them?

5. In what manner do you believe that these instructions of Jesus refer to you personally as a member of Christ’s Church?

6. What difference will it make if these instructions are viewed as having been given to each of the eleven individually, or if you view them as having been given to them collectively?

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