Submitted by Jan on Tue, 21/05/2013 – 13:58
Year C (2012-2013)
Bible Book: John / Johannes
Chapter: 16
Verse: 12 – 15

Last week I watched a YouTube video with a shadow dance group called “Attraction” – absolutely amazing! A group of eight dancers become one as they move together and move apart in an intricate story telling dance. A times it is impossible to identify the individuals in the group as they truly become one, at times the individual characters become clear. But somewhere in the mystery of oneness and individuality magic happens.

(You can watch the video on YouTube at

It is Trinity Sunday – probably the most difficult Sunday to on which to preach! I read many articles on the texts and sermons on the Trinity. I watched video’s and read blogs. But again and again I come to the same conclusion: “somewhere in the mystery of oneness and individuality magic happens.” I think that is what this symbol, which is widely used for the Trinity, also tries to convey.

I read about the word “Perichoresis”. Although the origin of the word is not totally clear, it is often described as being from the Ancient Greek περί (peri, “around”) + χορεύω (khoreuō, “dance”). However, it seems clear that this word became part of the study of theology because the relationship of the Trinity was described by early Christians as an eternal ‘holy dance’ of each member around the other. This makes sense to me when I think of the shadow dance and the complex mystery of oneness and individuality.

I don’t claim to understand the Trinity, or the many different analogies for speaking about the Trinity. And of course my analogy about the shadow dance is extremely limited. But to me this much seems clear. We worship a God of relationship. Jesus Himself speaks of this mystery in our text in John 16.

This mystery of a God who is one and three invites us to be in relationship. With God, with each other. It invites us to be part of the Holy dance.

And when am I part of the mystery?

When I act in love …
When I embrace life in its fullness of joy and suffering…
When I maintain my sense of connectedness and my responsibility for the collective…
When I live into the paradox which values both individuality and mutuality…
Thén I become part of the eternal dance of the Trinity.

To think about: How can you become closer to people living with HIV, as part of one body?

Written by: Lynn van Rooyen, CABSA Director

Author: van Rooyen L (Ms)