Leaven Blog

The love that flows between us

by Jill Ragar Esfeld

I discovered a beautiful description of the Holy Trinity some time ago on a card distributed by Holy Trinity Church in Lenexa, my home parish.

I keep it in my bible. It’s a quote from Catholic writer Peter Kreeft

“God is a Trinity because God is love,” he says. “Love requires three-ness; the lover, the beloved and the relationship, the act of love, between them.”

 I think about that every time I make the sign of the cross – the lover, the beloved, the love that flows between them.

And I thought about it this last week as I was working on a story about the Holy Trinity Handbell Choir.

I spent some time with the group in rehearsal and quickly learned a handbell ensemble is really one big instrument with each member playing his or her specific notes.

The melody flows from person to person, and it is critical that each part of the instrument be in perfect tune with the others.

If one bell misses its note, even the smallest one, the whole is affected.

In an ideal Christian community, this is the way the love of God operates.

As members of the body of Christ, each of us is playing our note in the song of life, and God’s love, the Holy Spirit, is constantly flowing through us.

A few years ago I took a picture of Archbishop Joseph Naumann at Mass, holding the Eucharist up during the consecration.

I was astonished when I downloaded the photograph and saw the Holy Spirit, in the image of a dove, clearly reflected in the host; particularly since there was a quote projected behind the archbishop that read, “Show us a sign of your goodness.”

I was astonished, but not surprised, because as a Catholic I truly believe in transubstantiation; and I truly believe when we receive the Eucharist, we become one body in the one bread, which is Christ.

I think the moments after communion are so powerful because I imagine the trinity complete with the spirit flowing from God to the body of Christ in all of us.

I love to close my eyes and experience that flow.

The Sunday I photographed the handbell choir for my article, I truly appreciated how the music mirrored that experience so beautifully.

Check out The Leaven article on the handbell choir this Friday, along with the dates they’ll be playing next.

Maybe you’ll have an opportunity to experience how much they enhance the liturgy of the Mass.

About the author

Jill Esfeld

Jill Ragar Esfeld received a degree in Writing from Missouri State University and started her profession as a magazine feature writer, but quickly transitioned to technical/instructional writing where she had a successful career spanning more than 20 years. She returned to feature writing when she began freelancing for The Leaven in 2004. Her articles have won several awards from the Catholic Press Association. Jill grew up in Christ the King parish in Kansas City, Missouri; and has been a member of Holy Trinity Parish in Lenexa, Kansas, for 35 years.

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