Feast of the Most Holy Trinity
The participation which we enjoy in the inner life of God – begun in Baptism – is our supernatural life which is what Christian life is all about. The new relations which thereby binds us to Him and to our neighbor are a reflection of those relations which prevail among the three adorable Persons – the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost. The divine Trinity [not that there are ‘three Gods’ – a contradiction in itself – but that in God there are three Persons and these three Persons are consubstantial, that is, of one divine essence and nature so that in one Godhead they are equally adored and worshipped], Is the supernatural life in essence; whereas, the participation which we enjoy in this inner life of God is properly sanctifying grace, which makes us sons of God, co-heirs with Christ, and living temples of the Holy Ghost. Sanctifying grace is the supernatural life redounding to us through participation.
God is life Himself, and that life is the light of men. Our God is not a philosophical abstraction; He Is the Living God, the Living One par exellence, Vivens Pater [the Living Father]. Moreover, for Him to live is to know and to love, for His knowledge and love are His very life; and the adequate terminus of His operations is His own divinity. In Him there is absolute simplicity, with perfect identity between His being and His operations, between the principle and the term of action, between one attribute and the other. His essence is life [I Am Who Am, Ex. 3.14], His life is activity, and His actions are not only vital but they are life itself.
Yet, there is in God a personal distinction. God the Father, living in the plenitude of His life, knows Himself eternally and infinitely. Knowing Himself, He produces or utters from eternity the Word of His Wisdom [- the Son -] the faithful, living, and personal representation of His Infinite Being [and not a mere abstraction as is produced in our human mind – for what is in God that is not God?]; and this issuing forth of the Word, expressed by knowledge and likeness, is His eternal generation [while the revealing of this Word, by His being made flesh, is His Incarnation]. The Word is most truly the Son of God the Father – from Whom all fatherhood in heaven and on earth receives its name; and He [the Son] is, in turn, the model of all filiation.
The Father and the Son contemplate and love each other infinitely, in the full communication of the selfsame divine Essence. The terminus of this impetus or spiration with which They love each other, the eternal embrace by which They bind Themselves to each other, is an infinite Love which is personal at the same that it is consubstantial [- the Holy Ghost]. This is the mystery of that ineffable life which human reason could never discover; and, even when manifested, could never understand [but in Heaven, we shall know God as He knows Himself – through the “beatific vision” of seeing God facie ad faciem (face to face, Ex.33.11): this the Church teaches us through Her divine liturgy where her priest ministers to God, truly and really present in the tabernacle at the high altar, facie ad faciem with his back turned to the people]. But Faith infallibly attests the reality of this life; and illumined souls experience it with full certitude, even in this world (cf., St. Teresa of Jesus, Interior Castle, Seventh Mansion, Ch. I).
God makes us participate in this same marvelous life by supernaturalizing our life to the point of deification. Through His condescension we enter into fellowship with the three divine Persons Themselves, in such a way that there re-echoes in us that inexpressible mystery: the Father reproducing His Word in our hearts and both together infusing in us and breathing upon us their Spirit of charity*. Thus each divine Person impresses on us His characteristic property and makes us participate in something of Himself. The Father gives us His divine being [not to make us consubstantial with Him, however]; the Holy Ghost vivifies and sanctifies us by pouring forth His charity in our hearts; and the Word, directly joined to our nature through the Incarnation and united with the whole Church and every just soul through the grace of His most sacred passion, fashions us to His own image and likeness.
* love or charity? Charity is the Christian supernatural love which the Spirit of Truth infuses in the hearts of just souls – the divine love that bears souls upon its wings to Heaven. Love is that which even the wicked is still capable of and does not merit the divine complacency. If I should distribute all my goods to feed the poor… and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing (1 Cor. 13.3).
The Father has predestined us to become conformed to the image of His Son (cf., Rom. 8.29) [- and not to the image of the idols of this world]; to that end He calls us and justifies us and gives us the Spirit of adoption and of promise. So, when the charity of the Father dwells in us, the Father and the Son also dwells in us (cf., Jn. 14.23; 1 Jn.4.13,16). We are then living temples of the entire Trinity and a “little heaven” where God reigns and is glorified. At the same time He glorifies Himself in us by letting the innermost splendors of His eternal brilliance shine forth in our souls (cf., Jn. 17.22) so that we become one with Him. Thus each divine Person influences the work of our deification according to His own particular property. He who possesses the Spirit of charity, possesses eternal life within himself; and that is the same life as was in the Father and which He manifested to us in the Word (cf., Jn. 1.2-7; 3.15; 4.12f; 5.11f).
A blessed Feast to all!