by Eleanor Tomlinson

Image by Eleanor Tomlinson

Trinity Sunday June 12th 2022,

St Andrew’s Congham, St Nicholas Gayton


Proverbs 8:1-4, Romans 5:,1-5, John16: 12-15

May I speak in the name of God who is Father, Son and Holy Spirit

Truth, honesty, dignity, sincerity, serving a common good.

Trinity Sunday and the yearly explanation of what does this mean? What is God as a triune being? How do we explain that?

Is it like a supermarket offer, where you buy 2 in this instance and get one free?

Is it like some kind of being with three heads?

The good news is it is none of these. In fact, they distract entirely from what it actually means.

It is one of those things where as a Christian we have to accept but we can’t understand everything. We would be in danger of trying to make Christianity like other religions which worship some kind of deity in a statue.


Let’s think of it more as a heavenly unity let’s think of it more as something which we can feel and sense and no is there without actually putting an image or a face to it. That’s really the hard part because as humans we really like to visualise, we like to put words to describe it this is what helps us in our understanding. But the trinity of God father Son and Holy Spirit doesn’t fit that.

The readings are great today in John chapter 16 he says, ‘when the spirit of truth comes he will guide you into all truth.’ He doesn’t say what he looks like he doesn’t describe in words the spirit

In Romans 5 we have, ’because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit that has been given to us.’

And so, as we leave Ascension day behind we move on with the assurance that the spirit the Holy Spirit is with us, that last part in the triune God but we have always. There always present. In Proverbs chapter 8, ‘does not wisdom call and as not understanding raise her voice’. Wisdom like the spirit is there it’s not describable but we do know it’s there.

Now I’m going to make quite a leap in this sermon today because last week we celebrated the time and jubilee of Queen Elizabeth the 2nd. What a magnificent event this is just what our country needed to bring everybody together.

We had wonderful pageants, we had London full of people, we had a royal family who had been split and divided coming together, not always the same that it had been before but definitely coming together. And at the head of that royal family, we have our queen at 95 she is still a leading and ruling.

Even though she couldn’t make every event of the weekend she was there on the balcony waving to all her people both those in London those in this country and to those across the world in the Commonwealth and other countries too.

What an amazing impact she has had.

Made even more so because if you go back to when she was first crowned there were no high expectations of her that she would be able to develop and deliver the monarchy and royal family in the way that she has. So, for me I strongly admire her I think she is a wonderful person as a leader she leads both from within in front and behind.

Now this is where the sermon gets slightly wacky

You know what struck me most was the other character that joined her there right at the beginning of the BBC clips… that wonderful little film of the Queen and Paddington bear. Could you think of any other monarchs in this world today or in fact any leaders in this world today who could start such an amazing wonderful and also serious procedure by the introduction of a character from a children’s book.

Let’s think about the Queen and let’s think about Paddington bear. We have beautiful faces for them both we have wonderful images, they both like hats, they both carry a bag and they both rely on other things to keep them going amazingly so it seemed that they relied on the same thing marmalade sandwiches.

The Queen keeps hers for later!

Let’s look at what really links them, truth honesty sincerity dignity being in service to others and of course a sense of fun.

There’s been a beautiful image of the Queen and Paddington holding hands, we are looking at them from behind and they’re walking together they have a corgi with some flags They both have a coat on and they both have a hat on,  and they carry a bag but we can’t see their faces.

But what does that picture tell us?

It tells us that they are sharing, they are working together, they have a sense of direction we can feel their unity, we can feel how they are joined for a purpose, and how for both of them they’re still walking.

The queen has been stalwart for 70 years in setting one foot in front of the other in the right direction. How amazing is that!

So we don’t need to see their faces we don’t need to see an image we can sense where they’re going and where they have come from.

They carry all of us with them along the way.

This Trinity Sunday let us think of God as leading us along our paths and journeys. Godin front of us God behind us, God beside us and God within us, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.