Angelus / Foto: Francesco Sforza - © PHOTO.VA - OSSERVATORE ROMANO

Angelus / Foto: Francesco Sforza – © PHOTO.VA – OSSERVATORE ROMANO

Here is a ZENIT translation of the address Pope Francis gave today, before and after praying the midday Angelus with those gathered in St. Peter’s Square.

Dear Brothers and Sisters, good morning!

The biblical Readings this Sunday, feast of the Most Holy Trinity, help us to enter the mystery of God’s identity. The Second Letter presents the words of greeting that Saint Paul addresses to the community of Corinth: “The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all” (2 Corinthians 13:13). This — let’s say — “blessing” of the Apostle is the fruit of his personal experience of God’s love, that love that the Risen Christ revealed to him, which transformed his life and “drove” him to take the Gospel to the Gentiles. From this experience of grace, Paul was able to exhort the Christians with these words: “Mend your ways, heed my appeal, agree with one another, live in peace” (v. 11). The Christian community, despite all its human limitations, can become a reflection of the communion of the Trinity, of its goodness and beauty. However this — as Paul himself attests — passes necessarily through the experience of God’s mercy, of His forgiveness.

It is what happened to the Jews on the way of the exodus. When the people broke the Covenant, God appeared to Moses in the cloud to renew that pact, proclaiming His Name and its meaning. He says thus: “The Lord, the Lord, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness” (Exodus 34:6). This Name expresses that God is not far away and closed in Himself, but He is Life that wills to communicate itself, He is openness, He is Love that rescues man from infidelity. God is “merciful,” “compassionate,” and “rich in grace” because He offers Himself to us to fill our limitations and our failings, to forgive our errors, to bring us back to the way of justice and of truth. This revelation of God reached it fulfilment in the New Testament, thanks to the work of Christ and His mission of salvation. Jesus manifested to us the face of God, One in essence and Triune in Persons; God is altogether and only Love, in a subsistent relationship that creates, redeems and sanctifies all: Father and Son and Holy Spirit.

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