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St. Augustine and the Boy on the Beach: A Story of the Holy Trinity

St. Augustine was walking along the beach in North Africa, pondering the mystery of the Holy Trinity. St. Augustine, one of the most brilliant minds of the early Christian Church, was grappling with one of the most profound mysteries of his faith—the Holy Trinity. How could there be three distinct persons—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit—yet one God? This paradox perplexed him. His thoughts churned like the restless waves before him, seeking clarity and understanding.

As Augustine walked, his attention was diverted by an unusual sight. A young boy, no more than seven or eight years old, was busy at work on the beach. He had dug a small hole in the sand and was running back and forth from the ocean to the hole, carrying a small seashell filled with water. With each trip, he poured the water into the hole.

Intrigued and somewhat amused by the boy’s determined efforts, Augustine approached him. The boy’s concentration was intense, his small face set in a serious expression. Augustine watched for a moment before his curiosity got the best of him.

“What are you doing?” Augustine asked, his voice gentle.

Without pausing in his task, the boy replied, “I’m emptying the ocean into this hole.”

Augustine chuckled, finding the boy’s earnestness endearing yet impractical. “But you can’t empty the vast ocean into a tiny hole in the sand,” he said kindly. “It’s impossible!”

The boy stopped his work and looked up at Augustine, his eyes reflecting a depth of wisdom far beyond his years. “Neither can your mind understand the mystery of the Holy Trinity,” he said simply.

For a moment, Augustine stood speechless, struck by the profound truth in the boy’s words. In that instant, he realized that the mystery of the Holy Trinity was like the vast ocean—immeasurable, unfathomable, and beyond the capacity of the human mind to fully grasp.

Before Augustine could respond, the boy disappeared. He seemed to vanish into thin air, leaving Augustine alone on the beach with his thoughts. It was as if the boy had never been there, yet the impact of his words lingered deeply in Augustine’s heart.

St. Augustine continued his walk, his mind now at peace. He understood that some mysteries, like the Holy Trinity, were not meant to be fully comprehended by the human intellect. Instead, they were to be accepted with faith and humility. The boy on the beach had taught him a valuable lesson—that some divine truths are too vast to be contained within the limited confines of human understanding.

From that day forward, Augustine approached the mystery of the Holy Trinity with a sense of wonder and reverence. He no longer sought to unravel it entirely but to appreciate its divine beauty and complexity. The encounter with the boy on the beach became a cherished memory, a reminder that faith often requires embracing the mystery rather than seeking to conquer it.

Please pray for all those who have died recently:

Thomas Mani (87), George Kakkassery (75) Thomas Chummar (81) P V Varghese Punnackapadavil (88)

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April 2024
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Fr Abin Kochupurakal
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Fr Abin Kochupurakal