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Environmental Stewardship Commission

Episcopal Church in Minnesota

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Shield of Episcopal Church

Upcoming Activities:

Next Meetings

We meet quarterly close to the solstice and equinox and we meet more frequently at Regional Chapter meetings.

Resolution on the Spirituality of Food Production

Resolution on Church Buildings and Grounds

Resolution on Creation Season

Resolution on Green Congregations



Lectionary Reflection

Year A, Trinity Sunday
Standard (Episcopal) Lectionary — Revised Common Lectionary

New Testament

2 Corinthians 13: (5-10) 11-14 (Standard [Episcopal] Lectionary)
2 Corinthians 13: 11-13 (Revised Common Lectionary)

[BeginStandard Lectionary] [Examine yourselves to see whether you are living in the faith. Test yourselves. Do you not realize that Jesus Christ is in you? -- unless, indeed, you fail to meet the test! I hope you will find out that we have not failed. But we pray to God that you may not do anything wrong-- not that we may appear to have met the test, but that you may do what is right, though we may seem to have failed. For we cannot do anything against the truth, but only for the truth. For we rejoice when we are weak and you are strong. This is what we pray for, that you may become perfect. So I write these things while I am away from you, so that when I come, I may not have to be severe in using the authority that the Lord has given me for building up and not for tearing down.]

[Begin RCL] Finally, brothers and sisters, farewell. Put things in order, listen to my appeal, agree with one another, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you. Greet one another with a holy kiss. All the saints greet you.

The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with all of you. [End both Lectionaries]


Reflection on 2 Corinthians 13: (5-10) 1-14 (Standard [Episcopal] Lectionary)
and 2 Corinthians 13: 11-13 (Revised Common Lectionary)

by John G. Gibbs, PhD

During the first few decades of Christian existence the “threefold-ness” of God, so to speak was a matter of experience rather than of philosophical theology. They spoke of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit because they had experienced God in those three ways.

The experiential basis of Trinitarian language is especially evident in the last verse of the epistle lesson: “The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with all of you.”

Both the apostle Paul and his Christian readers had experienced grace, love, and communion. They also thought of the risen Lord as giving especially grace (charis), and God the Father as giving love (agape) from the first creation onward forever, and the Holy Spirit as having permeated the Church and made it into a real community (koinonia). Already in 1 Cor. 12:4-7 the apostle had spoken in practical terms (gifts, services, activities) about the Spirit, Lord, and God who is “the same” in all those gifts, services, activities.

In short, any near-Trinitarian language within the New Testament arises from everyday practical Church experience.The New Oxford Annotated Bible NRSV (NY: Oxford Univ., 1994) annotates 2 Cor 13:14: “The order is significant; the grace of Christ expresses and leads one toward the love of God, and the love of God when actualized through the Spirit, produces communion with God and with one another.” There is no tyrannical God here, only the God of sovereign love (cf. also 1 John 4:13-21). If we see anything “Trinitarian” in the New Testament, we see “the persons” of the Trinity at work for the creation and for the People of God therein.


To Reflections on other Readings for Trinity Sunday, Year A:

Reflections available at the active links
Standard (Episcopal)
Revised Common
Old Testament (Hebrew Scripture) Reading:
Psalm 150 or Canticle 2 or Canticle 13
Psalm 8 or Canticle 2 or Canticle 13
New Testament Lesson
2 Corinthians 13: (5-10) 11-14
this page
2 Corinthians 13: 11-13
this page
Reflection on all the Readings: Standard (Episcopal) Lectionary
Reflection on Genesis, 2 Corinthians and Matthew Readings from RCL


John Gibbs, a retired theologian, attended Trinity Episcopal Church, Park Rapids, MN, when he originally wrote this reflection in 2002. He and we welcome your comments. Please address your comments or additional reflections to John Gibbs or any MEESC member, or mail them to:

c/o C. Morello
4451 Lakeside Drive
Eveleth, MN 55743-4400 USA

The MEESC assumes that all correspondence received is for publication on this web site. If your comments are not for publication, please so note on your correspondence. The MEESC reserves the right to decide which items are included on the website.


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