The Holy Trinity
by Rev. William G. Most
Perhaps the deepest, the most profound of all mysteries is the mystery of the Trinity.
The Church teaches us that although there is only one God, yet, somehow, there are three
Persons in God. The Father is God, the Son is God, the Holy Spirit is God, yet we do not
speak of three Gods, but only one God. They have the same nature, substance, and being.
We came to know this immense mystery because Christ revealed it to us. Just before
ascending He told them: "Go teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the
Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit" (Matthew 28:19). We know that these
Three are not just different ways of looking at one person. For at the Last Supper, Jesus
told us: "I came forth from the Father." So He is different from the Father. But
He also promised: "If I go, I will send Him [the Paraclete] to you. . . . He will
guide you to all truth" (John 16:28, 7, 13). So the Holy Spirit is also different.
Even though the Three Persons are One God, yet they are distinct: for the Father has no
origin, He came from no one. But the Son is begotten, He comes from the Father alone. The
Holy Spirit comes or proceeds from both the Father and the Son. These different relations
of origin tell us there are three distinct Persons, who have one and the same divine
Even though everything the Three Persons do outside the Divine nature is done by all
Three, yet it is suitable that we attribute some works specially to one or the other
Person. So we speak of the Father especially as the power of creation, of the Son as the
wisdom of the Father, of the Holy Spirit as goodness and sanctification.
The two doctrines of the Trinity and the Incarnation are the foundation of Christian
life and worship. By becoming man, God the Son offered us a share in the inner life of the
Trinity. By grace, we are brought into the perfect communion of life and love which is
God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit. This sharing in the life of the Trinity is meant to
culminate in heaven, where we will see the three Persons face to face, united to them in
Taken from The Basic Catholic Catechism
PART TWO: The Apostle's Creed
First Article of the Creed: "I believe in God the Father Almighty, Creator of heaven
By William G. Most. (c)Copyright 1990 by William G. Most
Electronic text (c) Copyright EWTN 1997. All rights reserved.
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