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Pastor's Corner

Pastor’s Corner for the Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity, Year B, by Fr. Bruce Botha SJ

Happy Feast Day to our Trinity family. This is a day when we celebrate not only our God as the theological reality of Trinity, but also a day when we celebrate our own identity as a community of believers. It is our family that we celebrate today.

 

Trinitarian doctrine is without doubt complex, and the Nicene creed simply says that Father, Son, and Spirit are all equally God because they are made of the same “God-Stuff”. Libraries of books have been written to unpack that theological insight. The readings of the solemnity teach us something about the nature of God.

 

In the first reading (Deuteronomy 4:32-34) we are told that the biblical God is quite different from the god of the pagans, or the god worshipped by people of other religions: he seeks us out and wants to enter into a relationship with us. The gospel (Matthew 28: 16-20) tells us that God will send his spirit upon his people, to be an abiding presence with them always. He is not a God who lives far away in heaven and terrifies his faithful with threats of destruction, he is within our hearts. In the second reading (Romans 8: 14-17) we are taught that the Holy Spirit within us cries out Abba, Father, proclaiming our identity as the children of God..

 

In addition to teaching us something about the nature of God, I think the readings also teach us something about the nature of community, the kind of family we are called to be. We are called to be a community able to see and appreciate God within our neighbour and in creation. We welcome people of all races, cultures, nationalities, genders, and orientations. We welcome young and old, students and unemployed. We welcome the poor and homeless, and through our ministry to them put our love into action.

 

We are a community that tries to live faith with integrity, not perfectly, but we are sincerely trying to live good lives. We are all too aware of the plank in our own eyes and therefore reluctant to attempt to remove the speck in our brother’s or sister’s eye. We acknowledge the fragility of one another and try to honour that vulnerability with our own gentleness.

 

Happy feast day to one and all. May this year be a year of blessing for all of us. May we be blessed with the love of the Trinity. May we be drawn into their love and learn to love as they do.

Bruce Botha SJ
Parish Priest

Fr Bruce Botha SJ was born in Durban, KZN. He received a diploma in education from the University of Natal and then taught physical science for 4 years at Scottburgh High School. He joined the Society of Jesus and did his noviciate in Cape Town. He then studied philosophy in London and theology in Berkeley, California. Between philosophy and theology, in the period of formation known as regency, he worked as the director of counselling for an HIV research centre. After ordination in 2006 he worked in Holy Trinity, Braamfontein until 2010, when he was appointed parish priest of St Martin de Porres, Orlando West. In 2021 he returned to Holy Trinity as Parish Priest and continues to serve as the Episcopal Vicar for Evangelisation for the Archdiocese of Johannesburg

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