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Trinity Sunday 2008

 
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Fr.Paul Weinberger
Pastor


Joined: 06 May 2005
Posts: 199
Location: Greenville, Texas

PostPosted: Sat May 24, 2008 11:33 am    Post subject: Trinity Sunday 2008 Reply with quote

Trinity Sunday 2008
Homily by:
Father Paul Weinberger
Saint William the Confessor Catholic Church
Greenville, Texas
May 18, 2008

Jesus said, “Whoever believes in Him will not be condemned. But whoever does not believe has already been condemned because he has not believed in the Name of the only Son of God

In the Name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit

Amen

These are strong words on this Sunday after Pentecost, which is always Trinity Sunday. The cover of the bulletin has a very ancient fresco of God the Father and just beneath His beard you see the dove, God the Holy Spirit, descending on God the Son, crucified. This picture is located in Florence.

Today is Trinity Sunday and the First Reading today is about the Lord revealing His Name to Moses and the great miracles and power that God conferred to him and his chosen people in His Name. In the last line of today’s Gospel Jesus says that whoever believes in Him will not be condemned but whoever does not believe has already been condemned because he has not believed in the Name of the only Son of God. To not believe in Jesus is to not believe in the One Who sent Him. God so loved the world that He gave us His only Son, and to not believe in Jesus is to not believe in the One Who sent Him nor to believe in the Holy Spirit sent to us from God the Father and Jesus Christ. God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit are three Persons in one God and yet, many Catholics today do not believe in the Name of the only Son of God. I am only speaking to Catholics.

I will give some examples so let us start at the beginning. Over on that side of the Church is a Baptismal Font with inlaid letters of marble in Latin, which says, “I baptize you in the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.” I see many times parents postponing Baptism of a child for months and years. It shows a lack of faith in the Name of God. As the water is poured over the young as well as an adult, the words, “I baptize you in the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.” are said as the water is poured or the person is immersed. To postpone Baptism or to consider Baptism as something merely functional, with the party being the real thing, is to risk condemnation and to show a lack of belief in the Name of God.

Just beyond the font is that “door”, which is the door to the Confessional. Confession is the Sacrament of Divine Mercy. At the end of every Confession, whether you or I am going to Confession, we hear the same words as the priest raises his hands. “I absolve you in the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.” Now, don’t get your hopes up; I just interrupted the words of absolution so I didn’t just grant all of you General Absolution. No, those words do affect what they say and we are forgiven in the Name of the Trinity, the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. So, staying away from Confession is a way of showing disbelief in the power of the Name to do exactly that. It can’t be interpreted any other way.

Going on to Holy Communion. I am just about to turn 49 and I am so grateful because since I received my First Communion in the second grade there has never been a Sunday where I missed Mass. Only by the grace of God and the prayers of so many I have never missed Sunday Mass in all those years. Oh, I had gotten many invitations to go to the lake or do this or that. I would tell them I had to go to Mass and they would tell me since I do it all the time I could just skip that and go with them. Isn’t that the temptation, to put someone, something, or some pleasure in place of Mass and say that it is greater than the Name of Jesus? In fact, when we come to Mass we not only hear the Word of Jesus, which has been revealed to us, but if we are Catholic and in a state of grace and no knowledge of mortal sin, we can receive Jesus, Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity. And…wherever Jesus is, there is God the Father and God the Holy Spirit. To forego receiving Holy Communion on Sunday for the frivolous reasons that I just mention is to show a lack of belief and to flirt with condemnation.

Confirmation is the Sacrament whereby we receive the fullness of the Holy Spirit. How many people have not been Confirmed because they say it takes too much time or is boring? You see a lack of belief and faith in the power of the Sacrament and the Holy Spirit. With the Holy Spirit we see God the Father and God the Son.

How about the statistic, which is very disconcerting today? Every year we have to send to the Diocese and the Diocese sends to the Vatican, how many marriages are being preformed. There is a dearth of Catholics, who are approaching the Church to marry. That means all of these people are going into the priesthood or into convents. No, that is not what is happening at all is it? Instead people are deciding to just live together or “whatever”, and I am not going to go into “whatever”. God wishes to join a man and a woman into the Sacrament of Holy Matrimony in order to fortify them by His Spirit. But if marriage in Church is now seen as something unnecessary then we see a pattern arising, or temptation.

In the bulletin there is the new quote that I’d placed in it last week. I didn’t mention it last week because I wasn’t preaching. It is from the book called, “Lukewarmness”. It could be the story of my life and this priest must have been following me around everywhere. You should get this book; it is very good. Remember what Jesus says in the book of Revelations? He says,

I will have you hot, I’ll have you cold, or I will vomit you out of my mouth.”

That is rather graphic for this time of the morning isn’t it? He definitely encourages us not to be lukewarm.

[From page 19, 20 of Lukewarmness]

Quote:
“Lukewarmness leads to discouragement and sadness. The Soul is drained of its inner resources. The former desire for the things of God is diminished. Whenever possible, the Soul avoids dealing with God. IT TRIES TO SPEND AS LITTLE TIME AS POSSIBLE WITH GOD...


Then Father Carvajal makes the point; we do the very same thing. If we are talking to someone and they are not listening we stop talking. Right? The only case I guess where that is different is during the homily, right? If you are a parent and you notice the children are not listening you stop talking and start spanking or something like that…”the punishment”. Fr. says,

Quote:
If we were to continue speaking, we would only make them more inattentive. Yet, when we happen to find someone who is willing to listen we are immediately drawn to him so that we might share all that we have...


Here is the big scandal, the big temptation in our Catholic faith to show our lack of faith in the Name of God and not put prayer as a priority. We pray too much, we are always thinking of praying. Lets stop praying. No, we don’t pray enough. In the New Testament Jesus says to pray constantly, but what did He know? Exactly! He says to pray constantly because…well, I would say because we are constantly under attack or others are constantly in need. Do the words, Burma, China, and the Middle East ring a bell? There are so many people near and far in need and we have in our possession, prayer, which is so efficacious and we fail to understand the tremendous power that has been given to us if only we had recourse to prayer.

On page seven of the bulletin you see the prayer inspired by the writings of St. Therese. It is the Prayer to God the Father, and is based on John 16:23.

Whatever you ask the Father in My Name, it will be granted to you.

The prayer continues with full confidence and faith.

Quote:
With full confidence in the Truth of Jesus, I turn in Prayer to You, God my Father.


The first line of the body of the prayer asks,

Quote:
God the Father, in the Name of Jesus send me the Holy Spirit.


Do you notice how that is Trinitarian? It involves all Persons of the Holy Trinity. Many times when I talk to someone about this prayer, they ask if that is the prayer to the Holy Spirit, then I have to kill them. [laughter] No, I don’t mean the prayer to the Holy Spirit, I mean the prayer to God the Father; that is the way it starts out, “God the Father”, in the Name of Jesus please send me the Holy Spirit. We don’t subtract the Holy Spirit from God the Father and God the Son because one cannot be subtracted from the other. The rest of the prayer puts the emphasis on the Holy Spirit. Is there any prayer superior to that first line?

Quote:
God the Father, in the Name of Jesus send me the Holy Spirit.


The answer is no! I could ask for a million dollars or a trillion dollars, or a new car and a trillion dollars. That does not equal or surpass asking God the Father, in the Name of Jesus, to send you the Holy Spirit. Everything else comes from this and we have to admit that if we are truly human we should be developing until the day we day, so there is an area here about personal development. The prayer asks,

Quote:
Holy Spirit, please come into every part of my memory.


So many things that we have seen or experienced, or that are sinful are indeed memories that are lingering and the other team can just pick them up and throw them at us in our weakest moment. Think about the last twenty-four hours of your life and what a target you will be. This line and the rest of that prayer is asking God to take even the memories that are offensive to God and hurtful to ourselves away, surrendering them to Him and erase the board, if you will.

Now let us look at the section of the prayer under “Doubles”. The second one says,

Quote:
Holy Spirit, by tomorrow double my hunger and thirst for prayer.


Yesterday was the last day of CCD for grades 5-8 and I asked the kids some questions. I asked them what kids do over the summer, where do kids stay over the summer. To their credit they were honest and these were the answers that I got.

In bed, in front of the TV and on the phone.

I guess if you are very fortunate you are in bed in front of the TV and on the telephone. When I was a kid we went…where was it? Oh yea, outside! Then at 8:00 my mother unlocked the door and let us back in. [Laughter] Children today will spend three months in bed in front of the TV on the telephone if you let them. This is not desirable or helpful and is not why we were made. The more we hunger and thirst for prayer the more we hunger to be with the One, Who wants to hear every detail and everything about us. God already knows but He wants us to tell Him about it and to share with Him everything that is going on.

Look at the last line of that prayer on page #7 of the bulletin; I will try to end with that. Those last couple of lines makes a real good point. This is the classic principle of the interior life.

Quote:
He who does not advance slides back


Whenever I fail to pray I am a backslider. Whenever you fail to pray you are backsliding too. Whenever we are backsliding we are not showing our confidence, our faith, our belief in the Name of the only Son of God, and if we do it consistently enough we habituate it and we put our souls in danger. Just because I attend Mass on Sunday, just because I know how to pray the rosary, just because I am a priest or just because I am so and so doesn’t mean that you or I can’t risk everything and be condemned.

These are many ways that we can show our lack of belief in the Name of God and the Power that comes from Him. When we pray and we remember the people around the world like St. Therese did, when we remember people in need like St. Therese, all of a sudden the tremendous power that has been given to us begins to help others and in the process helps us as well.

Jesus said, “Whoever believes in Him will not be condemned. But whoever does not believe has already been condemned because he has not believed in the Name of the only Son of God

In the Name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit

Amen
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