The Shepherd, June 2005

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FROM THE FATHERS

“GOD IS THREE in regard to distinctive properties, or subsistences [hypostases], or, if you like, persons [prosopa]: for we shall not quarrel about the names, as long as the terms lead to the same conception. He is One in respect of the category of substance, that is, of Godhead. The Godhead is distinguished, so to say, without distinctions, and it is joined in one without abolishing the distinctions. The Godhead in One in Three, and the Three are One.”

Saint Gregory the Theologian, + 390 A.D.

“AT PRESENT, before the day of judgment comes, even though the Spirit cannot dwell within those who are unworthy, He nevertheless is present in a limited way with those who have been baptised, hoping that their conversion will result in salvation. On the day of judgment, however, He will be completely cut off from the soul that has defiled His grace. That is why Scripture says that in hades no one confesses God and in death none can be mindful of Him (see Ps. 6:4), since the Spirit’s help is no longer present. How can anyone imagine that the judgment will be accomplished without the HolySpirit? Scripture says that He Himself is the reward of the righteous, on that day when fulfilment is given instead of the promise.”

Saint Basil the Great, + 379 A.D.

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