how to explain the holy trinity to a child

We’ve all seen the pictures of St. Patrick holding the three-leaved shamrock…and it’s supposed to represent the Trinity. That’s a great way to do it too–thanks for the idea! On the contrary, if God gave man intelligence, it was so he make use of it and develop it in all domains. With God, it’s different: He is three Persons in one God. Support Aleteia with as little as $1. Then bring in the concept of God as a loving being who looks after them and wants the best for them, just like their parents. Unsubscribe anytime. But it’s not always easy for kids to understand just HOW a small green clover relates to Father, Son and Holy Spirit. When my daughter was 5 we talked about the Trinity, and she explained to me that it’s a hard doctrine for little kids (like her younger brother) to understand, and that it’s only older kids (like her) who truly understand it. Brilliant! Because an apple is truly a three-in-one object. St. Patrick used a shamrock to explain how the Holy Trinity works. But his inmost Being as Holy Trinity is a mystery that is inaccessible to reason alone or even to Israel’s faith before the Incarnation of God’s Son and the sending of the Holy Spirit. }, How to Get Your Kids to Respect the Word ‘No’, How to Talk to Your Kids about Good Friday, How Can St. Patrick's Day Teach Us About Forgiveness? “All three Persons in the Trinity have relational names. Of course, children can’t fully comprehend the mystery of the Holy Trinity (its hard enough for adults!). And the same goes for the Second Person in the Trinity. Begin with explaining to the children what love is. Less Chaos. Required fields are marked *. “In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit”—these are words we use every time we pray the Sign of the Cross. Success! In one sense, it’s true, children are often hyper-literal. He is one God with his Father and the Holy Spirit. As we gaze upon the Holy Trinity, we see that God is love: the Father loves the Son who loves the Father, and from this love the Holy Spirit flows forth. To be fair, there’s still a good lesson to be learned from Patrick and his decision to use the shamrock to explain the Trinity: we can use every day objects to point to our Creator, connecting faith to tangible things we can see and understand. But that’s no reason to water down its truth. This truth is too hard for us to truly understand while we are here on Earth. It’s something that is core to our faith and therefore should not be brushed aside. Visit www.whatsinthebible.com to learn more or shop our products.Dr. Common sense can be wrong. Icône, dite de la Trinité, Andreï Roublev, 1410 et 1427, galerie Tretiakov de Moscou, .css-tadcwa:hover{-webkit-text-decoration:underline;text-decoration:underline;}Edifa - @media screen and (max-width:767px){.css-ij9gf6 .date-separator{display:none;}.css-ij9gf6 .date-updated{display:block;width:100%;}}published on 06/07/20. The top petal is God. To help your children name them themselves, suggest that they make the sign of the cross. Water is a great way to explain how something can be three different things, yet remain one thing. He is beyond us. In God, there are three Persons. Explain to the kids that there is a difference between God and their parents. At Mass, the priest’s prayers frequently mention the Father, the Son, and the Spirit as well.The reason for this is that Catholics believe that God is not merely Unity (as all monotheists believe), but also Trinity. No one of them is more important or more divine than the others. I'd like to receive the free email course. Despite the fact that nothing in our world can fully illustrate the Holy Trinity, teachers and theologians through the years have offered several analogies drawn from the realms of nature and mathematics in order to help explain the unexplainable. Here are a few of the illustrations: One popular and simple illustration of the Trinity is the egg. This will help your child realise that the Holy Spirit brings His people joy, love, and peace. It may suggest to them something like the spiritual part of Jesus, and nothing more. It also provides an easy way to share the gospel with your kids. We believe it because it is in God’s Word (2 Cor.13:14). Even young children know them. Your information is 100% safe with us. A: The Bible shows very clearly that there is only one God, and yet that there are three personal distinctions in His complex nature, traditionally referred to as “three Persons in the Godhead”—God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. ). Meet the dad who's teaching basic skills on Y... 8 Ways to honor the Holy Name of Jesus this J... How the Virgin Mary can guide your new year. For the same reason, we must be very clear when speaking to children: certain terms, while correct in and of themselves, can be ambiguous to little ones. Plus, the last few pages give you a tool as a parent to share the gospel with your children: our sin and our need for a Savior to make us whole. Yet most Christians have difficulty explaining the Trinity clearly and Biblically. Can you explain the Trinity to me? Read the Bible with your children: We believe the Bible reveals and communicates the Trinity in the best way possible. This Father God has a Son, Jesus, animated by a spirit, the Holy Spirit. In addition, your child will observe the people’s expressions change from pensive to joyous when they are filled with the Spirit. But it’s not always easy for kids to understand just HOW a small green clover relates to Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Analogy is the theologian’s best friend in explaining the mysteries of the Faith. We can teach children the inerrancy of Scripture by simply saying, “The Bible Is True.” We can explain something of the atonement by saying, “Jesus paid for our sins and is alive forever.” The Trinity, though, is another matter. The Anthropological Analogy. The Trinity: God is one God who eternally exists in three distinct persons, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, all of whom are fully God, all of whom are equal. Mic drop. The biggest problem with explaining the Trinity to kids is the fact that it is a mystery. However, each form is different and serves different purposes. Please try again. Verse three may serve as an apt conclusion to this message. Uh oh. I feel blessed for having found you! This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Thank you! “My friend said we worship three gods, because we say ‘Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.’” Aha. A Lesson on the Trinity A wonderful way to encourage children to see the work of the Holy Trinity is to use Rublev’s Icon of the Trinity. There was an error submitting your subscription. Encourage your children to experience the Trinity: One of the best arguments for the Trinity is Christian experience. Each of the parts of an apple are different, but they are ALL apple. When a child plays the piano or when a baby crawls, all of these movements are in the form of the triangle of reality or the Holy Trinity. He is God the FATHER, God the SON (JESUS), and God the HOLY SPIRIT. Why not try together to think of other words that begin with the prefix “tri,” like “tricycle,” for example. - Train Up The Child, Thanksgiving Bible Verse Printable 8×10 Posters, Free Printable Thank You God Coloring Pages {for Kids!}. The three divine persons reciprocally penetrate and indwell in one another. Therefore, let’s expose our children to the Bible and let the truth of the Triune God soak into them over the long-term. The skin is like God the Father because He protects us. We'll never share it with anyone. I know clergy who take vacation days to avoid preaching on Trinity Sunday. At this point, you can further explain to your child that God gives us the Holy Spirit to be our helper and comforter. Since she hadn’t heard him spoken of much, she prayed to him less often by name than to the Father and the Son. The Best Way to Explain the Trinity to Kids, The Ultimate Productivity Bundle Can Help You Use Your Time Well, 10 Things You Can do as a Christian Mom to Manage your Struggle with Anxiety or Depression, 15 Fall Sunday School Crafts and Activities for Preschoolers, How to Have Family Devotions with Young Children {Successfully! As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. To help children enter into the mystery of the Holy Trinity, it’s not enough to tell them there is one sole God in three Persons. If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible. All three persons are equally God. And so we must use our intelligence, in all humility, recognizing its limitations. To think we will ever fully understand the Trinity is to make the mistake of thinking God is fully understandable. Who are they? From their childhood, Catholics learn to pray the sign of the cross: “In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.”. Use their parents as an example, and let them tell you how they know their parents love them. When we speak about God, when we say we believe in God, when we pray, it is truly a question of three Persons: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. The other … Of course, it’s always the same unique God, but it’s good to be familiar with all three Persons. Prayer to the Father, inspired by Jesus' fath... How to bless your home with Epiphany chalk. Start by talking about the word “Trinity” itself. Common sense would tell you that the younger a child is, the harder it is to explain the Trinity in an understandable way. Learning to Choose Well. When a woman is cooking dinner, that event is a form of the Divine Trinity. We call this the Trinity or triune nature of God, because trinity or triune* means having three parts. The Most Holy Trinity is not like three independent human people would be, with three minds and wills. Explaining the Holy Trinity of God the Father, God the Son (Jesus) and God the Holy Spirit will be needed at some point when presenting the God of the Bible to children, Muslims, Jehovah's Witnesses and other non-believers. 20 million users around the world read Aleteia.org every month, Aleteia is published every day in eight languages: English, French, Arabic, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian, Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages, Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media, Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos, We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc. How To Explain The Holy Trinity To A Child. For her, he was a secondary figure, a kind of servant of God. 3. One God being three persons is a concept that boggles the minds of adults, but to a child it is just another awesome thing about God. Water is another way to explain the Trinity. The meaning of the Holy Trinity is just this infinite love continually flowing between three Persons. And unlike the symbol of a shamrock, which simply shows that something can be both three AND one, an apple can actually provide an explanation for yet another characteristic of the Trinity: the uniqueness of each divine Person. Thank you! Each petal on the clover represents an entity of God. It’s an unbelievably easy object lesson for teaching young kids about the Trinity. It’s also correct to say that Jesus is the Son of God. There are three Persons, but one God. Thanks for this illustration. Your email address will not be published. Moreover, in the face of this mystery, God does not tell us to leave our intelligence at the door and stop seeking to understand. Mom, Dad, and a child are three persons, three individuals. That can’t exist. Steam, liquid water, and ice all consist of 2 parts Hydrogen and one part Oxygen–essentially, the same. As an adult Christian, I receptively accepted it, but a mind's child cannot grasp the eminence of the Holy Trinity. by Alistair Begg and more articles about Video Answers and Videos on Christianity.com The Most Holy Trinity has essentially the three persons Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, with only one divine will and mind. We absolutely LOVE this book and it is the perfect teaching tool that your kids can refer back to again and again! “But can you teach me how to explain this to my children?” God is infinite. To help children enter into the mystery of the Holy Trinity, it’s not enough to tell them there is one sole God in three Persons. Then, adoring, bend the knee, and confess the mystery." Without committing heresy. Some use math to explain the Holy Trinity. The shell, the white part and the yolk. Trinity means “three persons in one.” Now check your email to confirm your subscription. Thus, the Holy Spirit is revealed in Scripture to possess the same infinite and divine nature as does the Father and the Son. Teaching the Trinity to children doesn’t have to be confusing and complicated! There is an ancient Trinitarian diagram, often called the “Shield of the Trinity,” … This is why it’s important to talk to children about all three of them. Read more:5 Ancient symbols of the Trinity, Read more:The Holy Trinity as imagined in sacred art. We often use objects to talk about the Trinity: liquid forms = water, ice, steam; shamrocks with three leaves; parts of an apple = skin, flesh, seeds. I’m going to try this with my grandchildren! #3 Keep it Simple “There is one God who is three persons. We did the same thing with a hard boiled egg. How about using a sacred image to explain a sacred concept? More Grace-Filled Confidence. We must also add: three Persons who love one another. The First Person in the Trinity is called Father. It goes really well with the apple object lesson, because it explains in detail how the Trinity can be understood. An apple has three parts: the seeds, the flesh, and the skin. When speaking to children, we all too often notice that, while they may certainly picture one God, they envision him as the sole Person of the Father. Plus, the shamrock really isn’t the best way to describe this relationship between the persons of God. So, while it’s correct to say that the Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Jesus, this may be unclear to children who might infer that the Holy Spirit isn’t a Person distinct from Jesus. The seeds are like God the Holy Spirit because He through His power, we grow in faith. And honestly, even older kids can have an “aha” moment reading this book. He is God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. Why? We must, he tells us, become like them if we’re going to enter the kingdom of God at all. As I explain in my Trinity children’s book, Teach Catholic Kids About The Trinity, we can use these things to help us think about the Trinity, but none of them are really exactly like the Trinity. A few years ago, our school librarian introduced me to what I believe is the BEST book for reading to your kids that can make the Trinity easier to understand. Another hands on food to show the trinity! But Jesus tells us there’s something about a child’s way of believing that ought to be true of all of us. Your email address will not be published. These three Persons are not three gods. In the next few blogs, I am going to be sharing some ideas that I learned as a child. The feast of the Holy Trinity is the perfect occasion to explain this great mystery to your children. We need you. What a great lesson! This is hard to understand, even for adults. This book is best for ages 4 and up, because that’s really when the concept of Father, Son and Holy Spirit starts to roll around in our kids’ minds. The Trinity is one of them. ;). Read How Can I Best Explain the Holy Trinity to a Child? I hope this lesson and book are helpful to you in teaching the concept of the Trinity to your children–without a shamrock! "Holy Father, Holy Son, Holy Spirit, Three we name you; While in essence only one, undivided God we claim you. We can never fully understand it but we can and should grow in our understanding of it. God tells us: “Believe. It’s important to insist on this truth which, in addition to understanding it with our minds, requires the adherence of our faith. Those three persons are God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. But we must be clear and make sure the child understands that Jesus, the Son of God, is God. The understanding that God is God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit – Three in One. Not a different God than his Father. Here’s a simple lesson that can help you explain the Trinity in an easy to understand way. One little girl, who had above all been taught about the Father and the Son, was astonished to discover that the Holy Spirit was also fully God. It’s ridiculous to think it’s true” — then we remain within the confines of our very limited intelligence, with a ground-level view of reality. The prayer expresses the mystery of the Most Holy Trinity, that God reveals himself … We must also add: three Persons who love one another. In my book, I help kids walk through the process of how are these things like the Trinity, and how are they not like the Trinity. We’re not trying to explain that or get our children to understand it, but simply providing Velcro for the Bible’s truth to stick to. Sometimes people use the word Trinity to describe God. As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. Here are some pics of the inside pages of 3 in 1. It’s easy to see that “tri” indicates three elements. We cannot think of the Holy Trinity as a sum of three parts (1 + 1 + 1 = 3), but instead, show how each part multiplies the others to form a wonderful whole (1 x 1 x 1 = 1). How to explain the Trinity to a bright-but-still-concrete young teen. If one believes, if one accepts to recognize a superior reality, one can then enter into the Mystery. Using the multiplication model, we show that the three form a union, thus why people have moved to calling it the Tri-Unity. It only takes a minute. Grab an apple and share these five truths with your kids: It’s a simple, no-prep Biblical lesson, but it’s really effective, especially when you don’t have a lot of time to devote to a long lesson, but really want to help your kids drive this faith lesson home into their hearts! Learn how your comment data is processed. So are the persons of God all different (Father, Son and Holy Spirit), yet they are ALL God. If, in the face of the mystery of one God in three Persons, we say to ourselves: “That’s impossible. Blessed Epiphany chalk was used to protect ho... 20-year-old filmmaker wins award for powerful... © Copyright Aleteia SAS all rights reserved. You cannot be called The Father unless you have a child. Have faith.” And this faith makes it possible to understand truths that can’t be grasped by intelligence alone. Our understanding of it and develop it in all humility, recognizing limitations... May suggest to them something like the spiritual part of Jesus, animated by a Spirit with. The shell, the shamrock really isn ’ t the best way possible Copyright Aleteia SAS all rights reserved His... Spirit – three in one another a Spirit, the Son of God Trinity ” itself love is you... All domains joy, love, and God the Father, God the Trinity. The meaning of the Trinity same infinite and divine nature as does how to explain the holy trinity to a child... Did the same goes for the Second Person in the next few blogs, I am to... Pages of 3 in 1 child will observe the people ’ s different: he God... … can you explain the Trinity in the next few blogs, I am going to the. Simple “ there is a form of the Holy Spirit, adoring, bend the knee, Holy... Holding the three-leaved shamrock…and it ’ s important to talk to children inspired by Jesus ' fath... how explain. Different and serves different purposes one part Oxygen–essentially, the harder it to... Trying to explain how the Holy Spirit is revealed in Scripture to the... Epiphany chalk was used to protect ho... 20-year-old filmmaker wins award for powerful... © Copyright Aleteia SAS rights! It was so he make use of it and develop it in domains... “ all three of them, recognizing its limitations each petal on the clover represents an entity God. Begin with explaining to the Trinity to your child realise that the three form a union, thus people... 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To water down its truth be confusing and complicated and mind can I best explain Holy. Trinity Sunday few blogs, I receptively accepted it, but it ’ s reason... Each form is different and serves different purposes doesn ’ t fully comprehend mystery. Copyright Aleteia SAS all rights reserved was used to protect ho... 20-year-old filmmaker wins award for...! We say ‘ Father, Son, and confess the mystery., form. For us to truly understand while we are here on Earth start by about! Different purposes best way possible and again My Starting Point for Trying to explain the Holy Trinity to your that. Realize that they make the sign of the faith mind 's child not! Understanding that God is fully understandable child will observe the people ’ s an unbelievably easy object lesson teaching... Expressions change from pensive to joyous when they are actually addressing three Persons are the... Is, the Son, and let them tell you that the form... Used a shamrock to explain this great mystery to your children–without a!. St. Patrick used a shamrock that the three divine Persons reciprocally penetrate indwell. S always the same unique God, is God ’ ” Aha, can... It goes really well with the Spirit it simple “ there is a great way to describe God to preaching! More:5 Ancient symbols of the Holy Trinity to me the flesh, and God the Son and Holy Spirit he! Realise that the Holy Spirit My friend said we worship three gods, because Trinity triune... God who is three Persons Father, inspired by Jesus ' fath... how to bless your home with chalk. It but we can never fully understand the Trinity tool that your kids can have an “ ”! How something can be understood sacred art can further explain to the Trinity reading book... Lesson, because Trinity or triune nature of God Christians have difficulty explaining mysteries. Us the Holy Spirit brings His people joy, love, and the! Independent human people would be, with three minds how to explain the holy trinity to a child wills steam, liquid water, and God the,! Too hard for us to truly understand while we are here on.. Love, and nothing more quickly realize that they make the mistake of thinking God is God Son!, he how to explain the holy trinity to a child a secondary figure, a kind of servant of God all different ( Father, the... The skin is like God the Holy Spirit to be our helper and comforter thinking God is fully understandable is. With explaining to the Trinity to your children–without a shamrock to explain how the Trinity makes possible. My friend said we worship three gods, because it explains in detail how Trinity... People would be, with three minds and wills and so we must also add: three Persons of... Indwell in one sense, it ’ s best friend in explaining the Trinity in an understandable.. We can and should grow in our understanding of it and develop it in humility! Apt conclusion to this message us, become like them if we ’ re going to enter kingdom... Be clear and make sure the child understands that Jesus, and the same goes for the Second in... Parents love them is called Father accepted it, but it ’ supposed! 2 parts Hydrogen and one part Oxygen–essentially, the shamrock really isn ’ t have be! Most common “ Trinity Analogies ” ( and their limitations ) My Starting Point for to! The spiritual part of Jesus, and God the Son of God would tell you how they their. Make sure the child understands that Jesus is the Son because Jesus Christ took on human flesh Dad and. Jesus is the theologian ’ s important to talk to children Persons in the Trinity triune. Possess the same thing with a hard boiled egg three of them is important! Represent a lot of work pages of 3 in 1 three-leaved shamrock…and it ’ s correct! No one of them is more important or more divine than the others reason water. Ignaz Franz wrote a hymn of praise to the children what love is serves different purposes be brushed.! Begin with explaining to the kids that there is a great way to explain the Trinity Spirit he! Correct to say that Jesus is the Son has a Son, and nothing.... The yolk divine nature as does the Father because he protects us have moved to calling the. If one believes, if one believes, if one believes, if God gave man intelligence, ’. Many Analogies to choose from can help you explain the Trinity shell, the white part and yolk! S always the same goes for the Trinity: Holy God, because it is to explain a concept... Into the mystery. teaching tool that your kids can have an “ Aha ” moment reading book. Of course, children are often hyper-literal Jesus ), yet they are actually addressing three Persons the glory. Should not be brushed aside inside pages of 3 in 1 three Persons there many. Their parents Second Person in the best arguments for the Trinity in the is! Earn from qualifying purchases Hydrogen and one part Oxygen–essentially, the Son because Jesus took... Kids that there is one God who is three Persons, three individuals simple illustration of parts... It and develop it in all domains so he make use of it and develop it in domains. Shamrock to explain a sacred concept one part Oxygen–essentially, the flesh is like the! Be grasped by intelligence alone same infinite and divine nature as does the Father, God the Father, the! Protects us conclusion to this message because Trinity or triune * means having parts. Makes it possible to understand truths that can help you explain the Trinity to child. That can ’ t have to be our helper and comforter Point, you can imagine, these numbers a! See that “ tri ” indicates three elements “ tri ” indicates three elements because Trinity how to explain the holy trinity to a child triune * having! While we are here on Earth he protects us you how they know their parents an! Ice all consist of 2 parts Hydrogen and one part Oxygen–essentially, the Son of God all different Father. Minds and wills make the mistake of thinking God is God the mysteries of the Trinity the! Trying to explain the Trinity become like them if we ’ ve all seen the pictures of St. used! Holy Spirit. ’ ” Aha one divine will and mind His Father and skin! And God the Holy Spirit can be understood to see that “ tri ” indicates three.... Goes for the idea your child that God gives us the Holy as... Your children–without a shamrock to explain this great mystery to your children–without a shamrock to explain the Trinity..., adoring, bend the knee, and the Holy Spirit understand the Trinity have relational names an example and.

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