Sunday, 30 May 2010

Pope Benedict XVI on the Trinity

Today's "Meditation of the Day" in Magnificat has led me to the Angelus address of Pope Benedict XVI for Trinity Sunday 2009. Pope Benedict's scientific comparisons remind me of the analogy that he drew between the Eucharist as a source of an explosion of love among mankind and the chain reaction that is a feature of a nuclear explosion in Cologne.
God is wholly and only love, the purest, infinite and eternal love. He does not live in splendid solitude but rather is an inexhaustible source of life that is ceaselessly given and communicated. To a certain extent we can perceive this by observing both the macro-universe: our earth, the planets, the stars, the galaxies; and the micro-universe: cells, atoms, elementary particles. The "name" of the Blessed Trinity is, in a certain sense, imprinted upon all things because all that exists, down to the last particle, is in relation; in this way we catch a glimpse of God as relationship and ultimately, Creator Love ...  "In him we live and move and have our being", St Paul said at the Areopagus of Athens (Acts 17: 28). The strongest proof that we are made in the image of the Trinity is this: love alone makes us happy because we live in a relationship, and we live to love and to be loved. Borrowing an analogy from biology, we could say that imprinted upon his "genome", the human being bears a profound mark of the Trinity, of God as Love.
The same "Meditation for the Day" has also led me to the translation of the Preface for the Holy Trinity that will come into use with the new English translation of the Roman Missal - see here for my source. As one might expect, this article notes that the ICEL translation presently in use is the furthest from the Latin original than other English translations that have existed. The italics below are the words quoted by Pope Benedict in his Angelus address, and which caught my attention in Magnificat; they cannot be recognised in the ICEL translation presently in use.

It is truly right and just,
our duty and our salvation,
always and everywhere to give you thanks,
Lord, holy Father, almighty and
eternal God.

Who with your Only-begotten Son and the Holy Spirit
are one God and one Lord,
not in the unity of a single person,
but in a Trinity of one substance.

For what you have revealed to us of
your glory
we believe equally of your Son
and of the Holy Spirit,
so that, in confessing the true and eternal Godhead,
we adore the uniqueness of each Person,
their oneness in being,
and their equality in majesty.

Which Angels and Archangels praise,
Cherubim too and Seraphim,
who never cease to cry out each day,
and acclaim with one voice: ...

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