Romans, Chapter 5, Verse 1-2
1Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace* with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, 2through whom we have gained access [by faith] to this grace in which we stand, and we boast in hope of the glory of God.
Popular piety frequently construes troubles as punishment for sin; Paul therefore assures believers that God’s justifying action in Jesus Christ is a declaration of peace. The crucifixion of Jesus Christ displays God’s initiative in certifying humanity for unimpeded access into the divine presence. Reconciliation is God’s gift of pardon to the entire human race. Through faith one benefits personally from this pardon or, in Paul’s term, is justified. The ultimate aim of God is to liberate. The fullness of salvation belongs to the future it is called Christian hope. Paul’s Greek term for hope does not, however, suggest a note of uncertainty, to the effect: “I wonder whether God really means it.” Rather, God’s promise in the gospel fills believers with expectation and anticipation for the climactic gift of unalloyed commitment in the holy Spirit to the performance of the will of God. The persecutions that attend Christian commitment are to teach believers patience and to strengthen this hope, which will not disappoint them because the holy Spirit dwells in their hearts and imbues them with God’s love.
Feast of the Most Holy Trinity
Sunday is dedicated to the worship of the Triune God, and is called accordingly the Lord s day; but the first Sunday after Pentecost is appointed by the Church a special feast of the Most Holy Trinity, because this mystery, as the fundamental doctrine of the Christian religion, began at once to be preached by the apostles, as soon as they had been enlightened and strengthened by the descent of the Holy Ghost.
What thoughts and affections should occupy our minds on this feast? Although the mystery of the Trinity is incomprehensible to us, we must consider:
1. That God would cease to be God, if our limited understanding were capable of penetrating the substance of His nature.
2. The mystery of the Blessed Trinity, though incomprehensible to our intellect, is yet not without fruit in our hearts. The records of revelation show us God the Father as our Creator, God the Son as our Redeemer, God the Holy Ghost as our Sanctifier; and should not this move us to a child-like gratitude towards the blessed Trinity?
In praise of the Most Holy Trinity, the Church sings at the Introit of the Mass, Blessed be the Holy Trinity and undivided Unity; we will give glory to Him, because He hath shown His mercy to us. O Lord, our Lord, how wonderful is Thy name in all the earth.
Prayer. O almighty and eternal God, Who hast created Thy servant to acknowledge the glory of the eternal Trinity, in the confession of the true faith, and to adore the unity in the power of Thy majesty, we beseech Thee, that by firmness in the same faith, we may be ever protected from all adversities.
EPISTLE. Rom. xi. 33-36.
Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and of the knowledge of God! How incomprehensible are His judgments, and how unsearchable His ways! For who hath known the mind of the Lord? Or who hath been His counsellor? Or who hath first given to Him, and recompense shall be made Him? For of Him, and by Him, and in Him, are all things: to Him be glory forever. Amen.
Explanation. The ground of St. Paul s admiration in this epistle is the un fathomable wisdom and love of God, by which He permitted the Jews and heathen to fall into unbelief, that He might have mercy on all, and make all perceive that they were justified, not through their merits, but only through His grace. But the Church makes use of these words to express her reverent admiration for the greatness of the mystery of the all Holy Trinity. Though we can neither measure nor comprehend this mystery, yet no man of sound reason will hesitate to believe it, if he considers that it is most plainly revealed by God ; that as God, the Infinite, cannot be comprehended by the spirit of man, so also He can reveal more than we can understand ; and that, finally, there are many things in man himself, and in nature, which we acknowledge as true, but cannot comprehend. Besides, does not our holy religion assure us, that one day we shall behold face to face the Infinite Whose image is now reflected dimly in the mirror of nature? Let us add hope, therefore, to our faith, and if true and sincere love be based upon these two, our understanding and heart will have abundant consolation in regard to this great mystery.
GOSPEL. Matt, xxviii. 18-20.
At that time Jesus said to His disciples: All power is given to Me in heaven and in earth; going therefore teach ye all nations: baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and behold I am with you all days, even to the consummation of the world.
What command does Our Saviour give in this gospel? He commands His apostles to teach all nations, and to baptize them.
Is Baptism a sacrament? Yes, for by it we receive the grace of God, through an outward sign instituted by Christ.
What is the outward sign? Pouring water on the head of the person to be baptized and pronouncing at the same time the words: “I baptize thee in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.”
What is the effect of the grace of Baptism? Through water and the Holy Ghost, the baptized person is cleansed from original sin, and from all actual sins, if he has committed such; is spiritually new-born, and made a child of God and a joint heir with Christ (John iii. 6; Rom. viii. 17).
What is the use of sponsors?
1. In the name of the child, they express the desire to be baptized, and make the profession of faith, together with the promise to live according to the doctrine of Christ.
2. In case the parents should die, or neglect their duty, the godparents may provide for the instruction of the children.
3. They are witnesses that such a person has been baptized.
Who is God? God is an infinite being, of all possible perfections, the most sublime and excellent of all goods, existing from all eternity, and containing within Himself the principle of His own being and substance; from Whom all other things have received their existence and life, “for of Him, and by Him, and in Him are all things” (Rom. xi. 36).
What is the blessed Trinity? It is this one God, Who is one in nature and threefold in person, the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.
Is each of these persons God? Yes, for each possesses the divine nature and substance.
Is any of these three persons older, more powerful, or greater than another? No; they are all three, from eternity, equal in power, sublimity, and majesty, and must therefore be equally adored.
From Whom is the Father? From Himself, before all eternity.
From Whom is God the Son? The Son is begotten of the Father before all ages.
From Whom is God the Holy Ghost? He proceeds from the Father and the Son.
After the Son revealed His relation to the Father through Good Friday and Easter, and the Spirit revealed Himself at Pentecost, the most Holy Trinity can now be fully worshipped
Though the mystery of the Holy Trinity is the greatest dogma of the Christian faith and the Feast of the Holy Trinity one of the beloved annual feasts of Christianity, there are not many customs or rituals quintessentially associated with this day. It has always been the custom, however, to keep this day with great reverence and solemnity. Festivals after Mass featuring thunderous preachers and thunderous bands aroused their listeners to joyful heights, while Holy Trinity Confraternities (which were once very influential) would sponsor special events and devotions on this their name day. Superstition also ascribed great powers to the weather on Holy Trinity Sunday, regardless of what it was: "Trinity rain" was considered as healthy as "Trinity sunshine."
Trinity Sunday Facts
· The Nicene Creed and similar Apostle's Creed often recited during mass for many denominations affirms the Trinity. The creeds are a profession of faith. The Catholic version of The Apostle's Creed is:
I believe in God, the Father Almighty, Creator of heaven and earth; and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord: Who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary; suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died and was buried. He descended into hell; the third day He rose again from the dead; He ascended into heaven, is seated at the right hand of God the Father Almighty; from thence He shall come to judge the living and the dead. I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Holy Catholic Church, the communion of Saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and life everlasting. Amen.
· The Trinity does not explicitly appear in the Bible. The interpretation and belief in the three-in-one God came out of several councils in the early church that wrestled with the question of the divinity of God the Creator, Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit.
· St. Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland, taught non-Christians the Trinity with a shamrock.
· The Orthodox Church celebrates the Trinity in its Feast of the Pentecost. Pentecost Sunday is sometimes even called Trinity Day.
Trinity Sunday Top Events and Things to Do
· The Trinity is often described as a holy mystery beyond complete human understanding. To mark Trinity Sunday, consider other things that are beyond human understanding, like the universe, or the concept of time never ending.
· Listen to a sermon on Trinity Sunday to see what examples the pastor uses to illustrate the concept of God in three persons.
· Johann Sebastian Bach wrote music to celebrate the Trinity. Listen to one of his Trinity Sunday cantatas on YouTube.
· Experience the Trinity in art at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. One painting that depicts this is The Trinity by Italian painter Angulo Gaddi.
Father's Day is the day to recognize, honor and celebrate the sacrifices and accomplishments of fathers. In 1910, Washington State Governor declared Father's Day on the 19th of July. It then became a permanent federal holiday in 1972 when President Richard Nixon proclaimed that the third Sunday in June would be further known as Father's Day. On this day, children celebrate their fathers and father figures to show their love and appreciation.
Father's Day Facts & Quotes
· In 1966, President Lyndon B. Johnson declared the third Sunday in June as Father's Day. It became a permanent holiday in 1972 when President Richard Nixon proclaimed that the third Sunday in June would remain Father's Day.
· Mrs. Sonora Smart Dodd first came up with the idea for Father's Day after hearing a Mother's Day sermon in church. She was raised by her father and wanted to honor him.
· In 2014, 4% of all U.S. children lived only with their fathers.
· It is easier for a father to have children than for children to have a real father. - Pope John XXIII
· When one has not had a good father, one must create one. - Frederich Wilhelm Nietzsche
Father's Day Top Events and Things to Do
- Attend a Baseball game. Father’s Day occurs in the midst of Baseball season.
- Arrange a BBQ and invite all of the fathers in your family.
- Spend the day with Dad doing one of his favorite activities: fishing, golfing, hiking.
- Complete one of dad's chores or projects as a surprise. If it's something you don't know how to do, offer to help and learn.
- Take the President's Fatherhood's Pledge.
A Father’s Day Hike
On this Father’s Day take a walk with your Father being powerless and humble with him and with all graciousness thank him for his love and assistance in helping you find your path in life.
Yesterday I took a prayer filled hike in the Round Lake, New York area. I asked our Lord on the hike to speak to me as we walked along the way. The Lord spoke to my heart and said that in this world there are two kinds of people those that give and those that get. He said amazingly those that get never get enough and those who give always get enough.
As we walked Christ pointed out to me the things that I should be giving to others.
As I started the hike, I noticed the sign with the map of the hike was reversed and if I did not study it closely, I would be lost. Christ urged me to:
- Give good directions.
Walking along I met others walking or riding bikes coming from the opposite direction and they looked rather glum and miserable. Christ urged me to greet them. As I did, I noticed their expression changed from glum to happy.
- Give greetings.
Walking along I heard music from a tavern near the trail. Christ urged me to:
- Give music and song to gladding others hearts.
Walking along I met a small turtle that on seeing me tucked into his shell. Christ urged me to:
- Give others respect and privacy.
Walking along I passed a stream and notice the path was shady. Christ urged me to:
- Give refreshment to others.
Finally, as I was walking along as the Lord answered me, I noticed He had delivered me from all my fears
How to Be a Good Father
Probably nobody denies that the typical father exercises less authority in his home today than at any time in history. Reasons for this decline probably are of no interest or help in the present discussion; but the effect of it cannot be overlooked. For evidence accumulated by psychiatrists, social workers and similar experts proves unmistakably that when children lack a strong father to guide them, they suffer serious damage in many important ways. Consider these facts:
There is a startling growth in homosexual tendencies among the young, and most authorities agree that the boy who develops feminine characteristics usually has had unsatisfactory relations with his father in one or several important respects. Increases in juvenile delinquency — a headlined trend in every part of the country — are also due to the weak position of the father; the lack of an affectionate and understanding relationship between father and son is a prevalent characteristic in the background of boys charged with criminal offenses. Many authorities also blame the shocking rates of divorce and marriage breakdowns to this cause. The fathers of those who cannot succeed in marriage often never gave their children a realistic example of how a man should live with his wife in this relationship.
The importance of the father as an example of manhood to his son and daughter probably cannot be overestimated. For example, one day your son may marry and have a family. To be a successful father, he should know how to train his children; how to treat his wife and their mother in their presence; what to discuss with them about his work; how to show them manual skills, such as repairing a chair or painting furniture; how to perform in countless other important areas. The best way to learn how to act as a father is to observe one in action.
What ideals will he display as husband and father? To a large extent, that answer will depend upon those he has learned from you, his father, in your own home. What part will he play in the religious education of his children? The answer will largely depend upon whether you have led the family to Mass each Sunday, whether you say grace before meals in your home, whether you take an active part in the spiritual life of your parish. How should he act toward his wife — aloof, affectionate, domineering, docile? Here too the answer will mainly depend upon your example.
The adage, "Like father, like son," is firmly based on fact. No matter how much he may resist your influence, your son will be like you in many different ways. If your influence is wholesome, the effect upon him will be wholesome. If you are a bad father, you will almost surely corrupt him in some significant way. Remember also that you represent God before your child because you are — or should be — the figure of authority in your home. He will be taught that he can always depend upon the mercy and goodness of the eternal Father; but it will be difficult for him to grasp the full importance of that teaching if he cannot rely upon the goodness of his earthly father.
It has been said that, in addition to giving wholesome example, a good father follows four fundamental rules in his dealing with his children. First, he shows himself to be truly and sincerely interested in their welfare. Secondly, he accepts each child for what he is, and encourages any special talent which the youngster possesses. Thirdly, he takes an active part in disciplining his children. And finally, he keeps lines of communication open with them at all times. Each of these rules is worth detailed consideration, because the typical American father often ignores one or more of them.
1. Show an interest in your child's welfare. You can do this by devoting time to him, every day if possible. Try to discuss with him his experiences, problems, successes and failures. By giving yourself to him in this intimate way, you give him the feeling that he can always depend upon you to understand and help him in his difficulties. In a large family, it is especially important that you find time for intimate moments with each child. Every youngster should know that his father is interested in him as an individual, and is sympathetic with him and devoted to his welfare.
Modern fathers may find it more difficult to make their children an intimate part of their lives than did men of a few generations ago. Today's fathers often work many miles away from home. They leave for their jobs early in the morning and do not return until late in the evening, perhaps after the children are in bed. Unlike the men of an earlier age who often worked close to their homes, today's fathers may seldom see their youngsters during the week. To offset this condition, they should try to devote as much of their week ends to them as possible. This does not mean that you should be a "pal" to your children or that you must act like a juvenile, when aging bones may not permit this. But at family gatherings, picnics, trips to the ballpark or even visits to the school, you are sharing leisure moments with them.
2. Accept your child and encourage his talents. One man hoped for a son, and found it impossible to conceal his disappointment when a girl was born. He now spends much time trying to inculcate masculine virtues in her and berates her constantly because she is not proficient at sports. A successful lawyer prides himself upon his intellect and once hoped that his son would achieve great scholastic success. But the lad, now in high school, has shown no pronounced ability in academic work; however, he is skilled at working with his hands. He must face unending sneers from his father about his "stupidity." A third man married a beautiful woman and expected his daughters to be beauties too. One girl is extremely plain, however. Even at the age of ten she knows that she is a complete disappointment to her father.
All of these examples indicate ways in which fathers display a lack of acceptance of their children. It is a fact that the qualities a child inherits — his physical attributes, aptitudes, and many other characteristics — are the result of chance. He may be a genius or an idiot: you should not claim credit if the first possibility occurs any more than you should feel ashamed for the second. The moral is plain: your children are a gift from God, and you should always accept each of them in a spirit of gratitude. In fact, the saintly father will accept a defective child with greater gratitude, for God has offered him an opportunity to provide more love, affection and direction than the ordinary youngster might need.
Remember also that your child is an individual, with talents which you perhaps cannot appreciate. Let him develop them in the best way possible. In attempting to learn why many gifted children do not go to college, researchers have found that their parents often have actively discouraged them. In a typical case, a father became wealthy through real estate investments and could easily afford college for a son with a strong aptitude in science. But the father accused the boy of trying to "put on airs" whenever college was discussed. Thanks to him, the son is now a misfit.
3. Don't shirk unpleasant tasks of parenthood. "See your mother; don't bother me" is a remark commonly made by one type of father. He returns from work, eats his dinner and then settles down to an evening behind his newspaper or before the television screen. When his children seek his aid with their homework or when they become unruly and require a strong parental hand, he is "too busy" to pay attention. Such an attitude tells a child that his mother is the true figure of importance in the family, while Dad is only the boarder who pays the bills.
It is not fair for fathers to enjoy all the pleasures of parenthood — to play with the children, to boast about their growth — and to give mothers all the painful duties. A father should discipline as often as the mother. If he fails to do so, he gives the children the idea that he does not stand with the mother in her efforts to instill proper manners and acceptable forms of behavior. As a matter of fact, in major matters the good father is likely to be the court of last resort. This is as it should be for his authority is more impressive and its effect more lasting than that of the mother.
4. Keep lines of communication open with your children. Teenagers often say that they cannot talk to their fathers about questions which disturb them. This breakdown in communication usually stems from one of three factors, or a combination of them. The father may be so severe in his discipline that he appears as a dictator in the youngster's mind; in the past he has always been "too busy" to keep on close terms with his boy; or he has not given his youngster the respectful attention he should have.
Stalin-type fathers fortunately are on the way out in America, for most men have learned that it is easier to train a child with loving kindness than with brute force. But some stern unyielding fathers remain. They may beat their child into patterns of behavior that offend no one, but in the process they often create a bitter adult who is never able to confide fully in another human being.
The second and third possible explanations for a child's unwillingness or inability to confide in his father may have even worse effects than the first. In the first instance, unless the father is a calloused brute, his child may at least discern evidence that his father is interested in his welfare. But when a father does not even care enough to concern himself with the child's upbringing in any serious way, he evidences a complete absence of love or interest.
There are many things that human beings prefer to keep to themselves, and it is probably good that this is so. Your child should not feel that he must lay bare his innermost thoughts and desires. But he should know that in times of stress and strain he has a sympathetic and loving adviser to turn to. You will fulfill that role if you strive always to treat him with courtesy and sympathy, and with an understanding based upon your memory of the difficulties, problems, fears and aspirations of your own boyhood. Never ridicule him: it is the opposite of sympathy and probably locks more doors between father and son than any other action.
Activity Source: Catholic Family Handbook, The by Rev. George A. Kelly, Random House, Inc., New York, 1959
* A person with fear of the Lord is filled with peace, faith, hope and love.
Goffine’s Devout Instructions, 1896.