you but one divinity and power, existing one in three, and
containing the three in a distinct way. Divinity without
disparity of substance or nature, without superior degree
that raises up or inferior degree that casts down . . . the
infinite co-naturality of three infinites. Each person consid-
ered in himself is entirely God . . . the three considered
together . . . . I have not even begun to think of unity when
the Trinity bathes me in its splendor. I have not even begun
to think of the Trinity when unity grasps me. . . .
“O blessed light, O Trinity and first Unity!”
eternal blessedness, undying life, unfading light. God is love:
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. God freely wills to communicate the
glory of his blessed life. Such is the “plan of his loving kindness,”
conceived by the Father before the foundation of the world, in his
beloved Son: “He destined us in love to be his sons” and “to be
conformed to the image of his Son,” through “the spirit of son-
This plan is a “grace [which] was given to us in Christ Jesus
before the ages began,” stemming immediately from Trinitarian
It unfolds in the work of creation, the whole history of
salvation after the fall, and the missions of the Son and the Spirit,
which are continued in the mission of the Church.
The whole divine economy is the common work of the
three divine persons. For as the Trinity has only one and the same
nature, so too does it have only one and the same operation: “The
Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit are not three principles of
creation but one principle.”
However each divine person per-
forms the common work according to his unique personal prop
erty. Thus the Church confesses, following the New Testament,
“one God and Father fromwhom all things are, and one Lord Jesus
Christ, through whom all things are, and one Holy Spirit in whom
all things are.”
It is above all the divine missions of the Son’s
Incarnation and the gift of the Holy Spirit that show forth the
properties of the divine persons.
92 St. Gregory of Nazianzus,
40, 41: PG 36, 417.
Hymn for Evening Prayer.
97 Council of Florence (1442): DS 1331; cf. Council of Constantinople II (553):
98 Council of Constantinople II: DS 421.