Trinity Sunday                                                                                                                                                                 11 June 2017

  

Our Care for the Father’s Creation

  

Last week when our students from the Parish of the Visitation and St. Raymond gathered for their First Communion retreat they made Trinity biscuits.  Let me explain:  For each biscuit they rolled three balls of dough and placed them together in the baking pan.  When they came out, each biscuit had three distinct parts.  What a good reminder of the Trinity: One biscuit with three parts. One God and Three Persons.

 

I hope our children remember!  That image is not far from what St. Patrick taught the Irish people when he showed them the shamrock:  three leaves but always in fundamental unity in each shamrock.  Even the pretzels you buy at the mall show the same lesson:  three distinct parts but one pretzel.  That’s a memory tool used for centuries.

  

On this Trinity Sunday we remember that we worship One God!  That God has revealed himself to us as three divine persons:  Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  Throughout Easter we have lauded the second person, Jesus, who died, rose, and ascended for you and for me.  Last Sunday our observance was all about the third, the Spirit.  Looking back, can you see how the Spirit has moved and shaped you in the big events of life, and the small?

  

What do you know about the Father?  Check out the creed to begin:  I believe in God the Father Almighty Creator of heaven and earth.  It is the Father who created all things when all came to be.  He is still among us, willing our existence, creating anew, continuing to generate the soul of each newborn person, giving human life precious as that is.

  

But we also share a dynamic and critical role in God’s creation.  In the first chapter of the Book of Genesis we are told that God created male and female in his own image.  He instructed them:  Have dominion over the fish of the sea, the birds of the air, and all the living things that crawl on the earth.  An interesting command, “Have dominion!”  Unlimited use of creation just as we please?  In his encyclical letter Laudato Si’ Pope Francis responds with a forceful “NO!”  Listen:

  

Although it is true that we Christians have at times incorrectly interpreted the Scriptures, nowadays we must forcefully reject the notion that our being created in God’s image and given dominion over the earth justifies absolute domination over other creatures.  We are instructed to till and keep the garden.  To quote again:  “Tilling” refers to cultivating, ploughing or working, while “keeping” means caring, protecting, overseeing and preserving….Each community can take from the bounty of the earth whatever it needs for subsistence, but it also has the duty to protect the earth and to ensure its fruitfulness for coming generations.  Clearly Pope Francis is instructing us that our use of the goods of creation must be cautious and respectful, reflecting the truth that all is ultimately God’s and meant to be shared with humanity, future as well as present.

  

Our Holy Father has also charged us to look beyond the limited and sometimes narrow perspective of our own needs and to work together in communities and among nations to safeguard the goods of creation.  Interdependence obliges us to think of one world with a common plan.  Yet the same ingenuity which has brought about enormous technological progress has so far proved incapable of finding effective ways of dealing with grave environmental and social problems worldwide.  A global consensus is essential for confronting the deeper problems, which cannot be resolved by unilateral actions…

  

There is pointed and partisan public discussion today about the commitment of our country to preservation of the earth’s atmosphere.  The actual steps to accomplish the good are not for the Church to determine.  That is not our place or our roll.  But as Catholics we must all remember that which flows from our beliefs: that creation ultimately remains the Father’s.  He has given us dominion, but not the right to unbridled selfish use.  Pope Francis has pointed to the need to confront substantial international issues like care of the environment through cooperation among the nations of the world.  He is strong in that conviction! 

 

I believe in God the Father Almighty, Creator of heaven and earth.  I pray that my use of the goods of the earth and ours may be in keeping with God’s plan for creation and for us all.  Listening to the teachings of the Church always helps guide us in that way.  May we be blessed in that pursuit:  In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

  

Msgr. John R. Murphy 

Visitation Rectory, Norfolk, NY

 

 

Past Homilies

September 8th 2013

September 15, 2013

September 22, 2013

September 29, 2013

October 6, 2013

October 13 2013

October 20, 2013

October 27, 2013

November 3, 2013

November 10, 2013

November 24, 2013

December 1, 2013

December 8, 2013

December 15, 2013

December 22, 2013

Christmas 2013

December 29, 2013

January 1, 2014

January 5, 2014

January 12, 2014

January 19, 2014

February 2, 2014

February 9, 2014

February 16, 2014

February 23, 2014

March 2, 2014

March 9, 2014

March 15, 2014

April 6, 2014

April 17, 2014 

April 27, 2014 

May 11, 2014

May 25, 2014

June 1, 2014

June 15, 2014

June 29, 2014

July 6, 2014

July 13 2014

July 20, 2014

October 5, 2014

October 12, 2014

October 19, 2014

November 2, 2014

November 16, 2014

November 23, 2014

November 30, 2014

December 25, 2014

December 28, 2014

January 4, 2015

January 11, 2015

February 8, 2015

February 15, 2015

February 22, 2015

March 1, 2015

March 15, 2015

March 22, 2015

March 29, 2015

April 3, 2015

April 5, 2015

April 19, 2015

May 3, 2015

May 10, 2015

May 17, 2015

May 24, 2015

May 31, 2015

June 7, 2015

June 14, 2015

June 21, 2015

July 19, 2015

July 26, 2015

August 2, 2015

October 18, 2015

October 25, 2015

November 1, 2015

November 22, 2015

November 24, 2015

November 29, 2015

December 6, 2015

December 20, 2015

December 25, 2015

January 3, 2016

January 17, 2016

January 24, 2016

February 14, 2016

March 20, 2016

March 24, 2016

March 27, 2016

April 3, 2016

 

April 24, 2016

May 1, 2016

June 5, 2016

June 12, 2016

June 26, 2016

July 3, 2016

July 10, 2016

July 31, 2016

August 14, 2016

August 28, 2016

September 4, 2016

September 11, 2016

September 25, 2016

October 9, 2016

October 30, 2016

November 6, 2016

November 13, 2016

November 27, 2016

December 4, 2016

December 25, 2016

January 8, 2017

February 26, 2017

March 1, 2017

March 5, 2017

March 12, 2017

March 26, 2017

April 2, 2017

April 13, 2017

April 14, 2017

May 14, 2017

June 4, 2017

June 11, 2017