“Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.”

Today’s short gospel (Mt:28-16-20), one we’ve heard several times since Easter, is given to us on the Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity.  It is the end of Matthew’s gospel in which Jesus meets the Eleven on the mountain in Galilee after His resurrection.  Noting that He has received all power on heaven and earth, Jesus empowers the disciples with the command above, closing with the comforting words that He will be with us until the end of time.  This is the most explicit case (but by no means the only evidence) for Christian belief in God as triune: three persons, one God, all equal in majesty and glory.  Jesus’ command to the Eleven to make disciples of all nations is empowered by this unique sign of the blessing of the Trinitarian God.  Through baptism a person is freed from original sin and becomes a child of God.  Each time we invoke the words and make the Sign of the Cross it is worthwhile to remember how these words brought us into God’s family, even though most of us do not remember that day.  It is easy to fall into the habit of making this gesture without thought or haphazardly, but let us make a real effort to make it thoughtfully, carefully, and frequently from now on.  Say the words carefully (not in vain — it is the Lord’s name after all) and make the sign crisply, fully, and deliberately.  Not only should this be done at home during private or family prayers (upon getting up, upon going to bed, during meals, at thanksgiving, when facing a challenge, when starting a new task, before traveling, etc.) but also in public (during meals, when passing in front of a church where Jesus is reposed in the Eucharist [yes, even when walking by], in your office at the start of the day or before meals, etc.).  The Sign of the Cross reminds us of our gracious God in all His glory and provides a simple witness of our Faith to others.

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