Is the Trinity a piece of celestial algebra that really makes no difference to Christians, or a life-giving mystery that teaches us something vital about God and ourselves? This doctrine has taken its shape and focus over many centuries, and this textbook aims to retrieve key insights that have emerged at different times and to root them in their authors' life experiences. It also explores contemporary reexpressions and ramifications of this teaching. It seeks a fruitful integration of various approaches to this mystery, notably of the psychological (intra-personal) and social (inter-personal, communitarian) models which continue to be put forward today. It deals not only with God as triune but also with what this teaching discloses about God as one.

In greater detail, this text-book covers the development of Christian teaching on God one and triune, starting with its roots in the Hebrew scriptures, and surveying its development down through the centuries. It covers the impact of Jesus on our understanding of God and the early traces of teaching about the Trinity in the New Testament; the foundations for the doctrine of the Trinity laid in the period of the Fathers and Councils; developments in the Western Church from Augustine to the Medieval period, with attention to the contrasting approaches of the Eastern Church; and the contribution of great authors of the 20th century such as Rahner, von Balthasar, Lonergan, Mühlen, and the models they provide. It then explores a contemporary approach that brings together earlier understandings, and reflects on the pertinence of this teaching on the life of the Church, focusing on how we might name God in a post-patriarchal society, and how we might foster genuine dialogue between world religions.

Rather than offer an out-and-out critique of earlier authors, it seeks to retrieve what is of genuine value in their approaches, and rather than set them in opposition to each other tries to bring them together in integration.

A detailed table of contents at the end of the book will serve as a road map, and study questions will help the reader better actualize the connection between this teaching and his/her experience.

To access the regular table of contents, followed by the detailed table of contents, please click here.

To access a list of corrections, please click here.