Worship on June 7 – The Holy Trinity

Jun 06, 2020

The word trinity is not found in the scriptures, though the idea is grounded there. In the gospel Jesus sends his disciples forth to baptize in the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. More than a doctrine, the Trinity expresses the heart of our faith: we have experienced the God of creation made known in Jesus Christ and with us always through the Holy Spirit. We celebrate the mystery of the Holy Trinity as we profess the creed, and as we are sent into the world to bear witness to our faith. Today we celebrate our companion synod relationships with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Zimbabwe and our twinned parish in Shurugwi, Zimbabwe, and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Zambia.

Lessons for this Sunday, June 7: Genesis 1:1—2a;  Psalm 8; 2  Corinthians 13:11-13;  Matthew 28:16-20

Lessons for next Sunday, June 14:  Acts 2:14a, 36-47

New Sermon Series:  Beginning June 14, we will begin a sermon series that will focus on the book of Acts, following the gift of the Holy Spirit and the birth of Christ’s church, which was a church before buildings. We listen for what God’s Spirit continues to say to us as we live as Christ’s church in the world today!

Reflection from Pastor Hoffman:

Relationship. It’s all about relationship.

This Sunday, we celebrate the festival of the Holy Trinity. It’s a tricky festival, because it’s not a celebration of an event. It’s a celebration of a mystery – the mystery of God-in-three-persons.

We worship a God of relationship. God does not exist apart from relationship. Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Creator, Redeemer, Sustainer. Three-in-one and one-in-three. Made in the image of God, we do not exist apart from relationship either. We are connected in ways that we cannot even begin to imagine, as many have discovered during this pandemic and begun to see the far-reaching consequences of our actions and interactions. We are interdependent, but we don’t live as though it is so. We are divided by race, privilege, power, politics…the list goes on. These divisions threaten our relationship – our unity – with God and one another.

We will hear the final words from the gospel of Matthew: Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. (Matthew 28:19) Jesus’ mission on earth was to draw all people into relationship – with God and each other, and that’s the work Jesus entrusted to us to continue.

As we gather for worship, we celebrate our God of relationship by giving thanks for the relationships we share beyond our local congregation. We will hear God’s Word proclaimed by our Presiding Bishop Elizabeth Eaton, as will most other churches across our denomination, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. We will hear greetings from our brothers and sisters in our twinned parish in Shurugwi, Zimbabwe, as we celebrate the relationship we share in Christ as part of Companion Synod Sunday. (The Upstate NY Synod of which we are part is a Companion Synod to the Lutheran Church in Zambia and the Lutheran Church in Zimbabwe.) Through worship in these ways, we celebrate that we are not an island, but in relationship with Lutheran Christians across the country and around the world, loving God and serving God’s people together.

May our worship give shape to living our lives in relationship with God and restoring us to relationship with one another.