Sunday, June 03, 2007

Trinity Sunday

Trinity Sunday is one of the major feasts of the Church but not one that ever made it big where it counts: $$$ No Trinity Sunday white sales, no Trinity Sunday carols being played in the malls with only 10 more shopping days left 'til Trinity Sunday. Not even a deracinated saint or an anthropomorphic rodent to deliver presents the night before.

Up until the final reform of the Tridentine breviary in the early '60s (i.e., a few years before its complete replacement by the Pauline liturgy of the hours) Trinity Sunday was distinguished as the last day in the year in which the Athanasian Creed - Quicumque Vult - was recited liturgically. But no more. On an ecumenical scale of 1 - 10 (10 being best) it would only rate a 1. (And it only got the 1 because some Lutherans and Anglicans are rather fond of it.) So The Inn may be the old Creed's only commemoration this year.

Herewith, Quicumque Vult:

WHOSOEVER will be saved : before all things it is necessary that he hold the Catholick Faith.
Which Faith except every one do keep whole and undefiled : without doubt he shall perish everlastingly.
And the Catholick Faith is this: That we worship one God in Trinity, and Trinity in Unity;
Neither confounding the Persons : nor dividing the Substance.
For there is one Person of the Father, another of the Son : and another of the Holy Ghost.
But the Godhead of the Father, of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, is all one : the Glory equal, the Majesty co-eternal.
Such as the Father is, such is the Son : and such is the Holy Ghost.
The Father uncreate, the Son uncreate : and the Holy Ghost uncreate.
The Father incomprehensible, the Son incomprehensible : and the Holy Ghost incomprehensible.
The Father eternal, the Son eternal : and the Holy Ghost eternal.
And yet they are not three eternals : but one eternal.
As also there are not three incomprehensibles, nor three uncreated : but one uncreated, and one incomprehensible.
So likewise the Father is Almighty, the Son Almighty : and the Holy Ghost Almighty.
And yet they are not three Almighties : but one Almighty.
So the Father is God, the Son is God : and the Holy Ghost is God.
And yet they are not three Gods : but one God.
So likewise the Father is Lord, the Son Lord : and the Holy Ghost Lord.
And yet not three Lords : but one Lord.
For like as we are compelled by the Christian verity to acknowledge every Person by himself to be both God and Lord;
So are we forbidden by the Catholick Religion : to say, There be three Gods, or three Lords.
The Father is made of none : neither created, nor begotten.
The Son is of the Father alone : not made, nor created, but begotten.
The Holy Ghost is of the Father and of the Son : neither made, nor created, nor begotten, but proceeding.
So there is one Father, not three Fathers; one Son, not three Sons : one Holy Ghost, not three Holy Ghosts.
And in this Trinity none is afore, or after other : none is greater, or less than another;
But the whole three Persons are co-eternal together : and co-equal.
So that in all things, as is aforesaid : the Unity in Trinity and the Trinity in Unity is to be worshipped.
He therefore that will be saved : must think thus of the Trinity.
Furthermore, it is necessary to everlasting salvation : that he also believe rightly the Incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ.
For the right Faith is, that we believe and confess : that our Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is God and Man;
God, of the substance of the Father, begotten before the worlds : and Man of the substance of his Mother, born in the world;
Perfect God and perfect Man : of a reasonable soul and human flesh subsisting.
Equal to the Father, as touching his Godhead : and inferior to the Father, as touching his manhood;
Who, although he be God and Man : yet he is not two, but one Christ;
One, not by conversion of the Godhead into flesh : but by taking of the Manhood into God;
One altogether; not by confusion of Substance : but by unity of Person.
For as the reasonable soul and flesh is one man : so God and Man is one Christ;
Who suffered for our salvation : descended into hell, rose again the third day from the dead.
He ascended into heaven, he sitteth at the right hand of the Father, God Almighty : from whence he will come to judge the quick and the dead.
At whose coming all men will rise again with their bodies : and shall give account for their own works.
And they that have done good shall go into life everlasting : and they that have done evil into everlasting fire.
This is the Catholick Faith : which except a man believe faithfully, he cannot be saved.