The Trinity
Three Persons in One God

The Father and the Son

Jesus said to Nicodemus:

God loved the world this way. He gave the world his only Son so that those who trust him may not die but would live forever. For God did not send his Son into the world so the Son could judge it. No, God sent him to save the world!

Based on John 3:16-17

God made us. Even though he is beyond his creation, he show us his loving care by working in nature. This is why we call God our Father.

We Christians call God "Father" for another reason. He is the Father of his Son, our Lord Jesus Christ. But the fatherhood of God goes beyond the birth and death of a man named Jesus. Christians believe God is Father of his Son forever. And Jesus always has been and forever will be the Son of God.

How can this be? At Mass on Sundays, we profess our belief in the "only begotten Son, eternally begotten from the Father, light from light, true God from true God, begotten not made, one in being with the Father." In other words, we believe the Father always gives every quality, ability, and power he has with his Son. In fact, the Father always gives what he is, his very nature, with his Son. As the Father is God, so is the Son.

How do we know God's Son is God? We believe that wherever God acts, God is. God sent his Son to save us. Since only God can save humanity with his love and power, the person who revealed this divine power and love must be God. We know the Son is God through his saving life, death, and resurrection.

The Spirit Shows Us the Father and the Son

Jesus said to his followers:

When the Spirit comes, he will show you the entire truth and will tell you everything he hears from God. He will declare what is coming.

Based on John 16:13

The early followers of Jesus saw what he did and heard what he taught, but Jesus promised them more. He sent the Spirit to them to really bring their faith alive, to mold them into the Church, and send them out to spread the Good News. The Spirit would give these followers the truth and the power to proclaim that truth. The Spirit showed them the Son and, through the Son, the Father.

Like the Son, the Spirit always has and always will come from the Father. And like the Son, the Spirit receives the very nature of God from the Father. So, as the Son is God, so is the Spirit. At Mass on Sundays, we also profess our faith "in the Holy Spirit, the Lord and Giver of life, who proceeds from the Father and the Son..."

Three Persons in One God, One God with Three Persons

As Christians, we believe there is only one God, but there are three persons in God. Each person in the Trinity has all the qualities, abilities, and power we can attribute to God; each one is fully God. We know these three persons by their names and we know how they are related to each other by their names. "In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit." When we make the Sign of the Cross, we show our faith with the three persons in one God.

Faith in the Trinity is the beginning of our life in the Church. It is also the reason we are go out and spread the Good News.

The eleven apostles went to a mountaintop in Galilee where Jesus told them to meet. After Jesus approached the apostles, he said, "The Father gave me power over everything in heaven and on earth. Now, make people from every nation my followers:

Go to them.

Baptism them in the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
Teach them to carefully hold onto every command I gave you.
Listen! I am always with you until the end of time."

Based on Matthew 28:26, 28-30