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Most of the commentary that I have read regarding the identities of the Three Visitors to Abraham in Genesis 18 have all agreed that God (without specifying which Person) was one of them. Many seem to think that the other two visitors were angels. However, I have seen it indicated that "The three visitors are considered by some to represent the Trinity." (cf. Understanding the Scriptures by Scott Hahn)

Does anyone know of any Catholic sources (perhaps, Church Fathers, Catholic Saints, papal documents, etc.) which suggest that the aforementioned Three Visitors to Abraham were indeed, the Holy Trinity?

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  • not a very scientific answer, but maybe useful: if there were better sources, I am sure Scott Hahn would have mentioned them. He is quite the scholar, and he very much wants to conform to catholic faith I think, so it would be logical to expect him to use any credible source he can.
    – ABM K
    Commented Aug 21, 2023 at 16:06
  • His book merely makes mention of it in a footnote on p. 94---(2005) edition of the book. I am interested in actual sources that explicitly held that opinion.
    – DDS
    Commented Aug 21, 2023 at 16:19
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    related: "According to Catholicism, did Moses believe in the Trinity?"
    – Geremia
    Commented Aug 22, 2023 at 0:06
  • @Geremia Thank you for this link.
    – DDS
    Commented Aug 22, 2023 at 0:52
  • @curiousdannii I edited the first sentence of my post so I am not disagreeing with the premise. Is this now satisfactory?
    – Mr. Bond
    Commented Aug 22, 2023 at 17:28

2 Answers 2

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According to the Catena Aurea, one Procopius of Gaza, an early commentator, says that "Some say they are three angels, others that one of them is God with two angels, and others that there is a figure of the Holy Trinity." Since the words "Trinity" and "Triune" appear nowhere else in the Catena, this appears to be a minority opinion. This is the only reference in the Catena to this teaching, and the person giving the teaching is not even identifying it with his own belief.

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St. Augustine (from On the Trinity Ch. 2) seems to be suggesting (in 19) that the Three Visitors could very well be the Three Persons of the Holy Trinity

See: https://www.newadvent.org/fathers/130102.htm

  1. ... But under the oak at Mamre he saw three men, whom he invited, and hospitably received, and ministered to them as they feasted. Yet Scripture at the beginning of that narrative does not say, three men appeared to him, but, The Lord appeared to him. And then, setting forth in due order after what manner the Lord appeared to him, it has added the account of the three men, whom Abraham invites to his hospitality in the plural number, and afterwards speaks to them in the singular number as one; and as one He promises him a son by Sara, viz. the one whom the Scripture calls Lord, as in the beginning of the same narrative, The Lord, it says, appeared to Abraham. He invites them then, and washes their feet, and leads them forth at their departure, as though they were men; but he speaks as with the Lord God, whether when a son is promised to him, or when the destruction is shown to him that was impending over Sodom.

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