PODCAST – Sunday Readings

PDF Handout – Gospel Text (English/Spanish)

This handout which can be downloaded, printed, and used in your ministry is provided by Bishop David O’Connell (Los Angeles Archdiocese)

Click to access The-Solemnity-of-the-Most-Holy-Trinity-Year-B-May-30-2021-EngSp.pdf


Commentary on Readings for Solemnity of Most Holy Trinity (B)

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Catholic Productions

This I command you…

In the Gospel of John, chapter 15, Jesus teaches that if we do not produce good works, we will be separated from him and thrown into the fire. And, that if we do bear fruit, we will be pruned in order to bear more fruit. Check out the video above with Dr. Brant Pitre to learn more about this topic and the implications of what Jesus is teaching.

Matthew 28:16-20


  • The Gospel passage from Matthew is Jesus’ final instruction to the disciples after the resurrection.
  • Jesus proclaims full authority over all creation.
  • With that authority, Christ commissions the disciples to continue his work in the world, and he promises to remain with them until the end of the world.
SOURCE: Content adapted from Our Sunday Visitor
Romans 8:14-17

You have received the Spirit

  • In Romans, Paul describes God as Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
  • The Spirit is the shared life and love between Father and Son.
  • With Christ we become children of God.
SOURCE: Content adapted from Our Sunday Visitor
Deuteronomy 4:32-34, 39-40

The Lord is God and there is no other

  • In the reading from Deuteronomy we can see that the God of Israel is not removed from human history but enters into history with great power to protect and save the chosen people.
  • Through a speech by Moses, the people are encouraged to be aware of the many ways in which God has sustained them.
  • The Creator God desires to bless the people and make them prosper.
SOURCE: Content adapted from Our Sunday Visitor

Catholic Commentaries

Navarre Bible
Commentary on Sunday's Readings (PDF)

Click to access holy-trinity-b.pdf

Sources include The Jerome Biblical Commentary, The New Jerome Biblical Commentary, and The Navarre Bible. In addition, Church History by Laux (TAN Books), Introduction to the Bible by Laux (TAN Books), A Guide to the Bible by Fuentes (Four Courts Press), and Sharing Our Biblical Story by Russell for background information. We also included quotations from The Faith of the Early Fathers (3 volumes) by Jergens and Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture (many volumes) edited by Odum.
SOURCE: Bible study program at St. Charles Borromeo (Picayune, MS) courtesy of Military Archdiocese.
Raymond E. Brown

An Introduction to the New Testament

Doctrinal Section of the Body: Part II (5:1–8:39)

Burial, Guard at the Tomb, Opening of the Tomb, Bribing of the Guard, Resurrection Appearances (27:57–28:20)

Ave Maria Press

Catholic Scripture: A Catholic Study of God’s Word

The Holy Trinity


The Triple Structure of the Biblical Experience of God

INTRODUCTION: The doctrine of the Trinity, contrasted with the triadic formulas and the triple structure of the biblical experience of God, is implicit rather than explicit in Scripture.

By “triple structure” of biblical experience we mean that in both the Old Testament and the New, God is experienced as going forth out of himself (from his “aseity”) in revelation and redemptive action, and also creating in human hearts a believing response to his revelatory and redemptive action.

Visit for more resources to help you reflect on the spirituality of the scriptures before Mass.

Children of the Triune God

Three feasts complete the Easter season: the Solemnity of Pentecost, the Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity, and the Solemnity of Corpus Christi.  These feasts should remind us of how deeply God loves us, and He has called us from before the foundation of the world to be His children (Eph 1:4-5).

The readings for the Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity illustrate how, from the beginning of Creation, God intended His word and His works to prepare us for

  1. the revelation of the mystery of the One God in Three Persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, and
  2. the blessings of God’s divine grace in God the Son.

It is the grace of new life we inherit in the Sacrament of Baptism which Christ renews each time we receive Him, Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity in the Most Holy Eucharist.

Triune Nature of God Revealed in Scripture

The word “Trinity” does not appear in Sacred Scripture.  It is a word the Church uses to define the mystery of the Triune nature of the One, mighty, Creator God.  The revelation of the mystery of the One God who is Father, Son, and Holy Spirit was unknown to the covenant people of the Old Testament.  It was an ineffable mystery hidden in the Holy Spirit inspired writings of the Old Testament that Jesus Christ, the Second Person of the Most Holy Trinity, first revealed to us.

Jesus began to reveal the mystery of the Triune nature of God to the Apostles in His Last Supper Discourse (Jn Chapters 14-17).  Then, the revelation became clear to them after His Resurrection and before His Ascension when Jesus instructed His disciples to baptize believers using the Trinitarian formula: 

Jesus came up and spoke to them.  He said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.  Go therefore, make disciples of all nations; baptize them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teach them to observe all the commands I gave you” (Mt 28:18-19)

 Jesus’ statement in this passage refers to the oneness of God as well as the unique relationship of the triune nature of the Most Holy Trinity.  Jesus’ command is to baptize in “the name,” singular, of the three Persons of the unity that is the Most Holy Trinity.

Sign of the Cross

Belief in the Trinity is the same profession of belief that Christians confess whenever making the Sign of the Cross and using the theological Trinitarian formula: “In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, Amen!”  The sign of the cross made across our bodies is everything a Christian believes in one profound gesture.

It especially takes on that confession of belief when (according to the ancient custom) holding up the first two fingers of the right hand together to symbolize the humanity and divinity of the Christ and holding the last three fingers against the palm to symbolize the unique three-in-one relationship of the Most Holy Trinity.  Then, the motion from forehead to chest and the hand moving from one shoulder to the other symbolizes our belief that God the Son came from Heaven to earth and from suffering to resurrection to accomplish humanity’s salvation.  Western Rite Catholic make the Sign of the Cross from the left shoulder to the right while Eastern Rite Catholics cross from the right shoulder to the left.

Dogma of the Trinity

The dogma of the Trinity is the central mystery of Christian faith and the truth that, above all others, makes the Christian faith unique among world religions (CCC 232, 234, 237, and 261).

In defense of the doctrine of the Holy Trinity, the Universal (Catholic) Church proclaimed at the Fourth Lateran Council in 1215:

“We firmly believe and confess without reservation that there is only one true God, eternal, infinite, and unchangeable, incomprehensible, almighty, and ineffable, the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, three persons indeed, but one essence, substance or nature entirely simple.”

In our attempt to grasp the depth of this sublime mystery, we, like St. Paul, should cry out:

Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God!  How inscrutable are his judgments and how unsearchable his ways! (Rom 11:33).

SOURCE: Michal E. Hunt at Agape Bible Study; used with permission.
First Reading

Moses’ Appeal for the Israelites to be Obedient to the Commandments

In the First Reading, Moses reminds the new generation children of the Exodus of Israel’s divine election when Yahweh called their forefathers out of the nations of the earth to become His holy covenant people.  In the revelation of God to the Israelites at Mt. Sinai (Ex 19-20), God did not reveal the mystery of His true nature.  That revelation came in the Incarnation of the Christ, and yet, there are mysterious hints of God’s Triune nature throughout the Old Testament.

SOURCE: Michal E. Hunt at Agape Bible Study; used with permission.
Responsorial Psalm

Praise for God our Creator and Provider

In the Responsorial Psalm, the psalmist petitions God:

May your kindness [hesed], O LORD, be upon us who have put our hope in you. 

Hesed is a Hebrew word referring specifically to love in the context of covenant, as in a marital covenant between a man and a woman, or in the context of a covenant between God and an individual, or God and a people who have the unity of a covenant relationship with Him.  It is God’s “hesed” that binds Him in a love relationship with those in covenant with Him. The Church Fathers saw the hidden revelation of the Most Holy Trinity in Psalm 33.  The psalm addresses God the Creator Father but “Word” and the “Breath/Spirit” (verses 6 and 9) were seen by the Church Fathers as references to the other two of the Persons of the Trinity who are God the Son and the God the Holy Spirit.

SOURCE: Michal E. Hunt at Agape Bible Study; used with permission.
Second Reading

Children of God

In the Second Reading, St. Paul writes that just as God led Israel out of slavery in Egypt, He also freed us from slavery to sin and death.  St. Paul defines our relationship with God by pointing out that we are not slaves but heirs of Christ and adopted sons and daughters of God the Father.  Just as God adopted Israel, we have also become adopted children in the family of God (Rom 9:4).

SOURCE: Michal E. Hunt at Agape Bible Study; used with permission.

Jesus sends forth the Apostles of the Trinity

In the Gospel Reading, Jesus reveals that the One God is Father, Son, and Spirit, and God desires to make the people of all nations His own (Is 66:18).  We are a blessed people who are called out of the world to belong to God as the Universal [Catholic] Church of His holy covenant people.  It is as we sing in today’s Responsorial Psalm:

“Blessed the people the Lord has chosen to be his own.”

SOURCE: Michal E. Hunt at Agape Bible Study; used with permission.

Commentary on Readings for Solemnity of Most Holy Trinity (B)

Feasting on the GOSPELS

Christ is Undeterred by Doubt

GOSPEL: “But some doubted” (v. 17). What comforting words to the church! That is not a bad description of any congregation: some worship, full of faith, and some hold back due to doubt. Even with Christ standing bodily before them, his identity is not self-evident. He stands before them as a mysterious, not fully comprehensible presence, not as a knock-down argument.

The good news is that the risen Christ is undeterred by the doubts of his first followers. In this mountaintop congregation of intermingled believers and doubters, Christ comes, blesses, and commissions them. We can be thankful that Christ does not wait until we are full of faith, cleansed of all doubt, before he comes to us and utilizes us in his great move upon the world.

SOURCE: Content taken from FEASTING ON THE GOSPELS. All rights reserved.
Feasting on the GOSPELS

Rhythm of Gathering and Sending

GOSPEL: In our churches each Sunday there is a similar rhythm of gathering, then being sent forth, only to be regathered next Sunday. Jesus invites, “Come to me,” and then he commands, “Go!” No worship of Christ, no matter how grand and glorious, is complete without this rhythm of gathering and sending. Worship and mission are inseparable. The church that is engaged in tough, demanding mission will need the refreshment and rest of worship. The church’s worship is validated by the way we are engaged not only in worshiping Christ in church but in serving with Christ in the world. Here is the test of the fidelity of our Sunday worship.

SOURCE: Content taken from FEASTING ON THE GOSPELS. All rights reserved.

Jesus Gives Us Confidence as We Go

GOSPEL: While the Great Commission certainly compels us to go, even to difficult places, we’re not left on our own in this mission. Jesus’ authority gives us confidence as we go. Who are we to go to another people group, or even coworkers, and tell them that they are following false idols, and that if they don’t turn to Jesus, they will die forever? The world views this as arrogant, and even as far as many people in the church are concerned, communicating this to people makes no sense. However, if Matthew’s Gospel is true—that is, if Jesus died on the cross for the sins of the world, if He rose from the grave in victory over sin and death, and if there is no one like Him and He reigns as Lord over all—then telling a lost world about Jesus is the only thing that makes sense! What doesn’t make sense is millions of Christians sitting back and saying nothing to the nations. Instead, we ought to go with confidence, knowing that the One who sent us is sovereign over all and worthy of worship from all.

SOURCE: Christ-Centered Exposition


“I don’t think I can do it.”
“You can — and I’ll catch you if you happen to slip.”

“I’m afraid, Dad. I don’t want to go!”
“Don’t worry, son. I’ll be with you.”

“Mommy! Mommy! I had a terrible dream.”
“I’m right here, honey. It’s OK. You’ll be fine.”

Remember being encouraged or comforted by your mom or dad? Your loving parents assured you of their presence — in the room, in the house, or just a phone call away. Secure in that knowledge, you gained the courage and peace to go on. You knew that everything would be all right.

Now you are all grown up, an adult, a man. But you still get scared to death at times and have anxiety-riddled nightmares, worrying about the future, your finances, and your family. You may even long desperately for the assurance of Mom’s or Dad’s strong hand and loving word. You feel burdened and alone.

But you’re not alone. God is there with you wherever you are. The promise that Jesus gave the disciples as he sent them into the world is also for you: “I am with you always.”

Take heart! Have hope! Be encouraged! Move out in faith!

Christ is with you. ♦


The Impregnating of the Human Spirit

SECOND READING: The picture of life in the Spirit begins to emerge here. Through His ministry we can see there is leading, liberating, and loving, but, in addition, the apostle speaks of the learning experience we may have through Him. This learning experience is related to the interplay of the human spirit with the indwelling Holy Spirit.

In much the same way that the female ovum, unfertilized, cannot reach its potential, so the human spirit without the penetration of the Holy Spirit is limited to an experience of partial fulfillment and unrealized potential. But as in the case of the ovum penetrated by the sperm, so the human spirit becomes alive with the aliveness of the Spirit and not only reproduces something totally new, but also provides the opportunity for full development and function of the human spirit.

This penetrating ministry called by Paul “the Spirit Himself bearing witness with our spirit,” has to do with the impregnating of the human spirit with the realization of all that is involved in being “children of God.”

SOURCE: THe Preacher’s Commentary, Complete 35-Volume Set: Genesis–Revelation offers pastors, teachers, and Bible study leaders clear and compelling insights into the entire Bible that will equip them to understand, apply, and teach the truth in God’s Word.

The Process of Adoption

SECOND READING: The Greek word behind “sonship” can also be translated “adoption” (huiothesia). “Sonship” denotes the state of being God’s own children; “adoption” refers to the process that leads to that state. Since almost all of the uses of the word outside the New Testament mean “adoption,” that is probably the best rendering here.

The process of adoption was unknown among Jews, but was common in the Greek, and especially the Roman, world. It was a legal institution by which a person could adopt a child and confer on that child all the legal rights and privileges that would accrue to a natural child. One of the most famous “adoptions” in the Roman world was Julius Caesar’s adoption of Octavian, who became Emperor Augustus. Paul’s readers in Rome would naturally have thought immediately of this institution when they read these verses. The language would have conveyed to them the amazing grace of God in taking sinful human beings, making them his own children, and conferring on them all the rights and privileges of heaven itself (see also 8:23; Gal. 4:5; Eph. 1:5). But, while the language Paul uses here undoubtedly points to this Roman institution, the word also indirectly conjures up the Old Testament and Jewish background we sketched above. Israel herself, Paul affirms in Romans 9:4, experienced this same “adoption.” Here again is a blessing given to Israel that is now “transferred” to Christians.

SOURCE: Zondervan Illustrated BIBLE Backgrounds COMMENTARY SET (4-Volume Set), 2019.
Feasting on the Word

The Need to Belong

SECOND READING: Everyone senses the need to belong. Psychologists tell us that the most basic human need is for security. Children need to know whom to trust, whom to call “Mommy” or “Daddy,” and where they can feel safe. We have heard about those studies showing that orphan babies have died from lack of human contact. Even when given excellent food and care, they suffer for want of the most elemental needs: to belong to a family, to have someone hold them, to know the presence of a loving parent. All people have the same basic need for belonging: people to call friends and family, relationships that are safe and rewarding, places that feel like home.

Robert Frost captured this human characteristic in a poem about Old Silas, an unreliable farmhand who, though no longer welcome, returned to a certain farm to die. The farmer’s wife said he had come home, but the farmer said that because Silas had left when he was most needed, he was certainly not returning to a place he could call home. His wife countered, “Home is the place where, when you have to go there, they have to take you in.”

(Robert Frost, “The Death of the Hired Man,” in The Poetry of Robert Frost, ed. Edward Connery Lathern (New York: Holt, Rinehart, and Winston, 1969), 34–40.)
SOURCE: Content taken from FEASTING ON THE WORD, YEAR B (12 Volume Set); David L. Bartlett (Editor); Copyright © 2011. Westminster John Knox Press. All rights reserved.
Niell Donavan

First Reading


Second Reading

Gospel Reading

SOURCE: Richard Niell Donavan, a Disciples of Christ clergyman, published SermonWriter from 1997 until his death in 2020. His wife Dale has graciously kept his website online. A subscription is no longer required.

Year B: Gospel of Mark

Mark: Christ Centered Exposition Commentary

Mark: A Reader-Response Commentary

Mark: A Theme Based Approach

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Commentary on Readings for Solemnity of Most Holy Trinity (B)

Catena Aurea

Matthew 28:16-20

16. Then the eleven disciples went away into Galilee, into a mountain where Jesus had appointed them.

17. And when they saw him, they worshipped him: but some doubted.

18. And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.

19. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:

20. Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.

Annotated index of Church Fathers used in commentary

Third Century

  • Origen – Alexandrian biblical critic, exegete, theologian, and spiritual writer; analyzed the Scriptures on three levels: the literal, the moral, and the allegorical
  • Cyprian – pagan rhetorician converted to Christianity; acquired acquired a profound knowledge of the Scriptures and the writings of Tertullian; elected bishop of Carthage; martyred in 258

Fourth Century

  • Eusebius – Bishop of Caesarea; author of Ecclesiastical History, the principal source for the history of Christianity from the Apostolic Age till his own day; also wrote a valuable work on Biblical topography called the Onomasticon
  • Athanasius – Bishop of Alexandria; attended the Council of Nicea; opposed Arianism, in defence of the faith proclaimed at Nicaea—that is, the true deity of God the Son
  • Hilary – Bishop of Poitiers; the earliest known writer of hymns in the Western Church; defended the cause of orthodoxy against Arianism; became the leading Latin theologian of his age
  • Gregory of Nazianzus – one of the “Cappadocian Fathers”; a great influence in restoring the Nicene faith and leading to its final establishment at the Council of Constantinople in 381
  • Gregory of Nyssa – one of the “Cappadocian Fathers”; Bishop of Nyssa; took part in the Council of Constantinople
  • Ambrose – Bishop of Milan; partly responsible for the conversion of Augustine; author of Latin hymns; it was through his influence that hymns became an integral part of the liturgy of the Western Church
  • Jerome – biblical scholar; devoted to a life of asceticism and study; his greatest achievement was his translation of the Bible into Latin (the Vulgate); also wrote many biblical commentaries
  • Nemesius – Christian philosopher; Bishop of Emesa in Syria
  • Augustine – Bishop of Hippo (in northern Africa); a “Doctor of the Church”; most famous work is his Confessions; his influence on the course of subsequent theology has been immense
  • Chrysostom – Bishop of Constantinople; a “Doctor of the Church”; a gifted orator; his sermons on Gen, Ps, Isa, Matt, John, Acts, and the Pauline Epistles (including Hebrews) established him as the greatest of Christian expositors
  • Prosper of Aquitaine – theologian; supporter of Augustinian doctrines; closely associated with Pope Leo I (“the Great”)
  • Damasus – pope; active in suppressing heresy
  • Apollinaris of Laodicea – Bishop of Laodicea; close friend of Athanasias; vigorous advocate of orthodoxy against the Arians
  • Amphilochius of Iconium – Bishop of Iconium; close friend of the Cappadocian Fathers; defended the full Divinity of the Holy Spirit

Fifth Century

  • Asterius of Amasea – Arian theologian; some extant homilies on the Psalms attributed to him
  • Evagrius Ponticus – spiritual writer; noted preacher at Constantinople; spent the last third of his life living a monastic life in the desert
  • Isidore of Pelusium – an ascetic and exegete; his extant correspondence contains much of doctrinal, exegetical, and moral interest
  • Cyril of Alexandria – Patriarch of Alexandria; contested Nestorius; put into systematic form the classical Greek doctrines of the Trinity and of the Person of Christ
  • Maximus of Turin – Bishop of Turin; over 100 of his sermons survive
  • Cassion (prob. Cassian) – one of the great leaders of Eastern Christian monasticism; founded two monasteries near Marseilles; best known books the Institutes and the Conferences
  • Chrysologus – Bishop of Ravenna; a “Doctor of the Church”
  • Basil “the Great” – one of the “Cappadocian Fathers”; Bishop of Caesarea; responsible for the Arian controversy’s being put to rest at the Council of Constantinople
  • Theodotus of Ancyra – Bishop of Ancyra; wrote against the teaching of Nestorius
  • Leo the Great – Pope who significantly consolidated the influence of the Roman see; a “Doctor of the Church”; his legates defended Christological orthodoxy at the Council of Chalcedon
  • Gennadius – Patriarch of Constantinople; the author of many commentaries, notably on Genesis, Daniel, and the Pauline Epistles
  • Victor of Antioch – presbyter of Antioch; commentator and collector of earlier exegetical writings
  • Council of Ephesus – declared the teachings of Nestorious heretical, affirming instead the unity between Christ’s human and divine natures
  • Nilus – Bishop of Ancyra; disciple of St John Chrysostom; founder of a monastery; conducted a large correspondence influencing his contemporaries; his writings deal mainly with ascetic and moral subjects

Sixth Century

  • Dionysius Areopagita (aka Dionysius the Pseudo-Areopagite) – mystical theologian; combined Neoplatonism with Christianity; the aim of all his works is the union of the whole created order with God
  • Gregory the Great – Pope; a “Doctor of the Church”; very prolific writer of works on practical theology, pastoral life, expositions of Job, sermons on the Gospels, etc.
  • Isidore – Bishop of Seville; a “Doctor of the Church”; concerned with monastic discipline, clerical education, liturgical uniformity, conversion of the Jews; helped secure Western acceptance of Filioque clause
  • Eutychius (Patriarch of Constan­tinople) – consecrated the church of Hagia Sophia in Constantinople; defended the Chalcedonian faith against an unorthodox sect; became controversial later in life
  • Isaac (Bp. of Nineveh) (aka Isaac the Syrian) – monastic writer on ascetic subjects
  • Severus (Bp. of Antioch) – Syrian Orthodox Patriarch of Antioch; the leading theologian of the moderate Monophysites
  • John Climacus – ascetic and writer on the spiritual life; later Abbot of Mt. Sinai; best known for his Ladder of Divine Ascent which treats of the monastic virtues and vices
  • Fulgentius – Bishop of Ruspe in N. Africa; scholarly disposition; follower of St. Augustine; wrote many treatises against Arianism and Pelagianism

Seventh Century

  • Maximus ( of Constantinople, 645.) – Greek theologian; prolific writer on doctrinal, ascetical, exegetical, and liturgical subjects

Eighth Century

  • Bede (131CESK) – “the Venerable Bede”; a “Doctor of the Church”; pedagogue, biblical exegete, hagiographer, and historian, the most influential scholar from Anglo-Saxon England
  • John Damascene – Greek theologian; a “Doctor of the Church”; defender of images in the Iconoclastic Controversy; expounded the doctrine of the perichoresis (circumincession) of the Persons of the Trinity
  • Alcuin – Abbot of St. Martin’s (Tours); a major contributor to the Carolingian Renaissance; supervised the production of several complete editions of the Bible; responsible for full acceptance of the Vulgate in the West

Ninth Century

  • Haymo (of Halberstadt) – German Benedictine monk who became bishop of Halberstadt; prolific writer
  • Photius (of Constantinople) – Patriarch of Constantinople; a scholar of wide interests and encyclopedic knowledge; his most important work, Bibliotheca, is a description of several hundred books (many now lost), with analyses and extracts; also wrote a Lexicon
  • Rabanus Maurus – Abbot of Fulda in Hess Nassau; later Archbishop of Mainz; wrote commentaries on nearly every Book of the Bible
  • Remigius (of Auxerre) – monk, scholar, and teacher
  • Paschasius Radbertus – Carolingian theologian; wrote commentaries on Lamentations and Matthew, as well as the first doctrinal monograph on the Eucharist, he maintained the real Presence of Christ

Eleventh Century

  • Theophylact – Byzantine exegete; his principal work, a series of commentaries on several OT books and on the whole of the NT except Revelation, is marked by lucidity of thought and expression and closely follows the scriptural text
  • Anselm – Archbishop of Canterbury; a “Doctor of the Church”; highly regarded teacher and spiritual director; famous ontological argument for the existence of God as “that than which nothing greater can be thought”
  • Petrus Alphonsus – Jewish Spanish writer and astronomer, a convert to Christianity; one of the most important figures in anti-Judaic polemics
  • Laufranc (prob. Lanfranc) – Archbishop of Canterbury; commented on the Psalms and Pauline Epistles; his biblical commentary passed into the Glossa Ordinaria
The Catena Aurea (Golden Chain) is Thomas Aquinas’ compilation of Patristic commentary on the Gospels. It seamlessly weaves together extracts from various Church Fathers.


BEDE. ‘Beda, in Hom.’ non occ.) When Saint Matthew has vindicated the Lord’s Resurrection as declared by the Angel, he relates the vision of the Lord which the disciples had, Then the eleven disciples went into Galilee into a mountain where Jesus had appointed them. For when coming to His Passion the Lord had said to His disciples, After I am risen I will go before you into Galilee; (Matt. 26:32.) and the Angel said the same to the women. Therefore the disciples obey the command of their Master. Eleven only go, for one had already perished.

JEROME. After His Resurrection, Jesus is seen and worshipped in the mountain in Galilee; though some doubt, their doubting confirms our faith.

REMIGIUS. This is more fully told by Luke; how when the Lord after the Resurrection appeared to the disciples, in their terror they thought they saw a spirit.

BEDE. (Hom. Æst. in Fer. vi. Pasch.)b. The Lord appeared to them in the mountain to signify, that His Body which at His Birth He had taken of the common dust of the human race, He had by His Resurrection exalted above all earthly things; and to teach the faithful that if they desire there to see the height of His Resurrection, they must endeavour here to pass from low pleasures to high desires. And He goes before His disciples into Galilee, because Christ is risen from the dead, the first fruits of them that slept. (1 Cor. 15:20.) And they that are Christ’s follow Him, and pass in their order from death to life, contemplating Him as He appears with His proper Divinity. And it agrees with this that Galilee is interpreted ‘revelation.’

AUGUSTINE. (de Cons. Ev. iii. 25.) But it is to be considered, how the Lord could be seen bodily in Galilee. For that it was not the day of the Resurrection is manifest; for He was seen that day in Jerusalem in the beginning of the night, as Luke and John evidently agree. Nor was it in the eight following days, after which John says that the Lord appeared to His disciples, and when Thomas first saw Him, who had not seen Him on the day of the Resurrection. For if within these eight days the eleven had seen Him on a mountain in Galilee, Thomas, who was one of the eleven, could not have seen Him first after the eight days. Unless it be said, that the eleven there spoken of were eleven out of the general body of the disciples, and not the eleven Apostles. But there is another difficulty. John having related that the Lord was seen not in the mountain, but at the sea of Tiberias, by seven who were fishing, adds, This is now the third time that Jesus shewed himself to his disciples after he was risen from the (John 21:14.) dead. (Mark 16:14.) So that if we understand the Lord to have been seen within those eight days by eleven of the disciples, this manifestation at the sea of Tiberias will be the fourth, and not the third, appearance. Indeed, to understand John’s account at all it must be observed, that he computes not each appearance, but each day on which Jesus appeared, though He may have appeared more than once on the same day; as He did three times on the day of His Resurrection. We are then obliged to understand that this appearance to the eleven disciples on the mountain in Galilee took place last of all. In the four Evangelists we find in all ten distinct appearances of Our Lord after His Resurrection. 1. At the sepulchre to the women. 2. To the same women on their way back from the sepulchre. 3. To Peter. 4. To two disciples as they went into the country. 5. To many together in Jerusalem; 6. when Thomas was not with them. 7. At the sea of Tiberias. 8. At the mountain in Galilee, according to Matthew. 9. To the eleven as they sat at meat, because they should not again eat with Him upon earth, related by Mark. 10. On the day of His Ascension, no longer on the earth, but raised aloft in a cloud, as related by both Mark and Luke. But all is not written, as John confesses, for He had much conversation with them during forty days before His ascension, being seen of them, and speaking unto them of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God. (Acts 1:3.)

REMIGIUS. The disciples then, when they saw Him, knew the Lord; and worshipped Him, bowing their faces to the ground. And He their affectionate and merciful Master, that He might take away all doubtfulness from their hearts, coming to them, strengthened them in their belief; as it follows, And Jesus came and spake to them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.

JEROME. Power is given to Him, Who but a little before was crucified, Who was buried, but Who afterwards rose again.

BEDE. (ubi sup.) This He speaks not from the Deity coeternal with the Father, but from the Humanity which He took upon Him, according to which He was made a little lower than the Angels. (Heb. 2:9.)

CHRYSOLOGUS. (Serm. 80.) The Son of God conveyed to the Son of the Virgin, the God to the Man, the Deity to the Flesh, that which He had ever together with the Father.

JEROME. Power is given in heaven and in earth, that He who before reigned in heaven, should now reign on earth by the faith of the believers.

REMIGIUS. What the Psalmist says of the Lord at His rising again, Thou madest him to have dominion over the works of thy hands (Ps. 8:6.), this the Lord now says of Himself, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. And here it is to be noted, that even before His resurrection the Angels knew that they were subjected to the man Christ. Christ then desiring that it should be also known to men that all power was committed to Him in heaven and in earth, sent preachers to make known the word of life to all nations; whence it follows, Go ye therefore, and teach all nations.

BEDE. (‘Beda; in Hom.’ non occ.) He who before His Passion had said, Go not into the way of the Gentiles, (Matt. 10:5.) now, when rising from the dead, says, Go and teach all nations. Hereby let the Jews be put to silence, who say that Christ’s coming is to be for their salvation only. Let the Donatists also blush, who, desiring to confine Christ to one place, have said that He is in Africa only, and not in other countries.

JEROME. They first then teach all nations, and when taught dip them in water. For it may not be that the body receive the sacrament of Baptism, unless the soul first receive the truth of the Faith. In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost, that they whose Godhead is one should be conferred at once, to name this Trinity, being to name One God.

CHRYSOLOGUS. (Serm. 80.) Thus all nations are created a second time to salvation by that one and the same Power, which created them to being.

JEROME. (Didymi Lib. ii. de Spir. Sanct.) And though some one there may be of so averse a spirit as to undertake to baptize in such sort as to omit one of these names, therein contradicting Christ Who ordained this for a law, his baptism will effect nothing; those who are baptized by him will not be at all delivered from their sins. From these words we gather how undivided is the substance of the Trinity, that the Father is verily the Father of the Son, and the Son verily the Son of the Father, and the Holy Spirit the Spirit of both the Father and the Son, and also the Spirit of wisdom and of truth, that is, of the Son of God. This then is the salvation of them that believe, and in this Trinity is wrought the perfect communication of ecclesiastical discipline.

HILARY. (de Trin. ii. 1 &c.) For what part of the salvation of men is there that is not contained in this Sacrament? All things are full and perfect, as proceeding from Him who is full and perfect. The nature of His relation is expressed in the title Father; but He is nothing but Father; for not after the manner of men does He derive from somewhat else that He is Father, being Himself Unbegotten, Eternal, and having the source of His being in Himself, known to none, save the Son. The Son is the Offspring of the Unbegotten, One of the One, True of the True, Living of the Living, Perfect of the Perfect, Strength of Strength, Wisdom of Wisdom, Glory of Glory; the Image of the Unseen God, the Form of the Unbegotten Father. Neither can the Holy Spirit be separated from the confession of the Father and the Son. And this consolation of our longing desires is absent from no place. He is the pledge of our hope in the effects of His gifts, He is the light of our minds, He shines in our souls. These things as the heretics cannot change, they introduce into them their human explanations. As Sabellius who identifies the Father with the Son, thinking the distinction to be made rather in name than in person, and setting forth one and the same Person as both Father and Son. As Ebion, who deriving the beginning of His existence from Mary, makes Him not Man of God, but God of man. As the Arians, who derive the form, the power, and the wisdom of God out of nothing, and in time. What wonder then that men should have diverse opinions about the Holy Spirit, who thus rashly after their own pleasure create and change the Son, by whom that Spirit is bestowed?

JEROME. Observe the order of these injunctions. He bids the Apostles first to teach all nations, then to wash them with the sacrament of faith, and after faith and baptism then to teach them what things they ought to observe; Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you.

RABANUS. For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also. (James 2:26.)

CHRYSOSTOM. And because what He had laid upon them was great, therefore to exalt their spirits He adds, And, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. As much as to say, Tell Me not of the difficulty of these things, seeing I am with you, Who can make all things easy. A like promise He often made to the Prophets in the Old Testament, to Jeremiah who pleaded his youth, to Moses, and to Ezekiel, when they would have shunned the office imposed upon them. And not with them only does He say that He will be, but with all who shall believe after them. For the Apostles were not to continue till the end of the world, but He says this to the faithful as to one body.

RABANUS. Hence we understand that to the end of the world shall not be wanting those who shall be worthy of the Divine indwelling.

CHRYSOSTOM. He brings before them the end of the world, that He may the more draw them on, and that they may not look merely to present inconveniences, but to the infinite goods to come. As much as to say, The grievous things which you shall undergo, terminate with this present life, seeing that even this world shall come to an end, but the good things which ye shall enjoy endure for ever.

BEDE. (‘Beda in Hom.’ non occ.) It is made a question how He says here, I am with you, John 16:5. when we read elsewhere that He said, I go unto him that sent me. What is said of His human nature is distinct from what is said of His divine nature. He is going to His Father in His human nature, He abides with His disciples in that form in which He is equal with the Father. When He says, to the end of the world, He expresses the infinite by the finite; for He who remains in this present world with His elect, protecting them, the same will continue with them after the end, rewarding them.

JEROME. He then who promises that He will be with His disciples to the end of the world, shews both that they shall live for ever, and that He will never depart from those that believe.

LEO. (Serm. 72. 3.) For by ascending into heaven He does not desert His adopted; but from above strengthens to endurance, those whom He invites upwards to glory.

Of which glory may Christ make us partakers,

Who is the King of glory,

God blessed for ever,


SOURCE: eCatholic 2000 Commentary in public domain.

Commentary on Readings for Solemnity of Most Holy Trinity (B)

First Reading

God’s Compassion for Us

Deuteronomy 4:33
Has any nation ever heard the voice of God speaking from fire—as you did—and survived?

New Living Translation (Hover cursor above the scripture reference to read the NRSV version)

No commentary available. Selection is for verses proceeding this week’s reading.

Dt 4:29-32 Here God reaffirms his compassion toward victims of painful circumstances and promises to come through for his people, even when they have failed him. He asks only that his people listen to him and follow his instructions for healthy, holy living.

Our relationship with God is certain because it is based upon God’s compassion for us, even when we don’t deserve it. God is faithful; we can be sure he will come through for us.

SOURCE: Content taken from THE LIFE RECOVERY BIBLE notes by Stephen Arterburn & David Stoop. Copyright © 1998, 2017. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, a Division of Tyndale House Ministries. All rights reserved.


God Can Re-Create Us

Psalm 33:20
We put our hope in the LORD. He is our help and our shield.

Ps 33:1-11 Such a powerful God is worthy of our trust and praise. The God who spoke the universe into existence is able to re-create us, and he is filled with tender love for us.

He can heal us of the defects that have brought such destruction to us and the people we love. All he asks is that we turn our life over to him so he can work these changes in us.

SOURCE: Content taken from THE LIFE RECOVERY BIBLE notes by Stephen Arterburn & David Stoop. Copyright © 1998, 2017. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, a Division of Tyndale House Ministries. All rights reserved.

Second Reading

The Spirit of God Lives In Us

Romans 8:11a
The Spirit of God, who raised Jesus from the dead, lives in you.

No commentary available. Selection is for verses proceeding this week’s reading.

Rom 8:9-11Either we have the Spirit of God living in us, or we don’t. How does the Spirit of God come to live within us? By our act of faith in turning our life over to God and by our acceptance of the work of Christ on our behalf.

Can we feel the Spirit of God within us? Sometimes, but we can know he is there whether we feel his presence or not. God has promised to give us the Holy Spirit when we ask. We receive the same Holy Spirit who raised Jesus from the dead. God will use this same power in us to bring about our recovery.

SOURCE: Content taken from THE LIFE RECOVERY BIBLE notes by Stephen Arterburn & David Stoop. Copyright © 1998, 2017. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, a Division of Tyndale House Ministries. All rights reserved.


Recovery is Available through God’s Power

Matthew 28:17
When they saw him, they worshiped him—but some of them doubted!

Matthew 28:16-20 Some disciples adjusted to the reality of Jesus’ resurrection quite readily, while others still doubted. But Jesus’ resurrection was not an end in itself, nor was it for just his closest disciples.

This new life through faith in the crucified and resurrected Christ is offered to all the people of the world. Those who by faith enter true spiritual recovery are baptized to show their commitment. Studying God’s Word and regular instruction in the faith help those in recovery grow spiritually. Recovery is available through God’s power until Jesus returns at the end of the age.

SOURCE: Content taken from THE LIFE RECOVERY BIBLE notes by Stephen Arterburn & David Stoop. Copyright © 1998, 2017. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, a Division of Tyndale House Ministries. All rights reserved.

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