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29. The Divine Persons

1. A person is a complete substance of the rational order.

2. A person is a substance, not an accidental. A person is a complete and subsistent substance, not a mere member or part of a greater substance. A person is of the rational order, or has a rational nature, that is, a person has (at least fundamentally) understanding and free will.

3. The name person indicates what is most perfect in nature. Hence it is a name rightly applied to God who is all-perfect. But in applying the term to God we exclude from its meaning all that is limited and imperfect in our concept of a creatural person.

4. Applied to God, the name person means a divine relation as subsisting, that is, as perfectly existing in the order of infinite substance. What actually subsists is, as we have said,the divine nature and essence itself. And this subsistence is actual in the terminals of the divine relations (that is, in the three Persons) without being merely shared among them. The undivided nature of God subsists perfectly in each of the three Persons, so that, while they are really distinct Persons, they and the same God.

"The greatest glory we can give to God is to do his will in everything."
St Alphonsus de Liguori

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"As the flesh is nourished by food, so is man supported by prayers"
St Augustine

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"What good does it do to speak learnedly about the Trinity if, lacking humility, you displease the Trinity? Indeed it is not learning that makes a man holy and just, but a virtuous life makes him pleasing to God. "
Thomas á Kempis

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