"What is particular to the Christian faith is the belief that this one God has graciously reached out to the world in love in the person of Jesus Christ in order to heal, redeem, and liberate – in a word, to save. The experience of salvation coming from God through Jesus in the power of the Spirit sets up such a powerful encounter with the Holy that it requires a new language. This language is Trinitarian. Far from being a definition or a description, Trinitarian language is an interpretation of who God is in the light of the glad tiding of salvation. It lifts up God’s gracious ways active in the world through Jesus Christ and the Spirit, and finds there the fundamental revelation about God’s own being as a self-giving communion of love. The point of Trinitarian language is to acclaim the living God as the mystery of salvation. Whether found in scripture, creed, liturgy, doctrine, or theology, it is Christian code tapping out the belief that the living God made known through Jesus and the Spirit is dynamic Love encompassing the universe who acts to save. At its most basic, it is saying, very simply, “God is love (1 John 4:16)." (Elisabeth Johnson, Quest for the Living God, pp. 223-224)
"A rationalistic Trinitarian theology, dysfunctional and divorced from Christian life and ethics, has little practical effect. The key to practical doctrine resides in the reign of God, which Jesus preached and enacted. As glimpsed in his parables and practices, the reign of God is a gracious rule of saving love and communion. As a place where God’s will is done on earth as it is in heaven, it sets up a new kind of community where “the least of these” brothers and sisters are included, a gathering where the Samaritan woman, the tax collector, and the leper are equally at home. In this community, tyranny is countermanded in the light of God’s self-giving ways; male and female are equal partners, as are Jew and Greek. Justice, peace, and the well-being of all creatures are the goal. If we are not living out the types of relationships that serve this pattern of the truth of the reign of God, then we haven’t got a clue about who God is. Knowing God is impossible unless we enter into a life of love and communion with others. To say that the Trinity is inherently practical is not to imply that this belief gives immediate solutions to war and violence, blueprints to eliminate hunger, or concrete remedies of inequality. Rather, it functions as a source of vision to shape our actions in the world, a criterion to measure the fidelity of our lives, and a basis for resisting every form of oppression that diminishes community." ( Elisabeth Johnson, Quest for the Living God, pp. 222-223)
Bridget Mary's Reflection:
Elisabeth Johnson's brilliant understanding of Trinity as God's self-giving love that is manifest in community, specifically where"the least of these brothers and sisters are included" is the experience of millions today who are on the margins of church and society. It is the place where God 's love is most often experienced, where we know ourselves and others as the beloved of God, where we encounter others as spiritual companions on the journey to justice, equality and peace! It is where the face of God is revealed.