Just before Christ voluntarily endured His Glorious Passion, He offered a prayer to the Father. This prayer, known as the “High Priestly Prayer” was a liturgical prayer following the model of the Old Testament Sacrifices which expressed the devotion of the person offering the sacrifice. In this prayer Jesus said, “Keep through Your name those whom You have given Me, that they may be one as We are.” Jesus spoke often of unity in this great prayer. You can read the entire prayer in the Gospel of John, Chapter 17. In this prayer, we can arrive a deeper understanding of Christ’s desire for His Church.
It was this desire for complete unity that has been a driving force of the Church Fathers since the Apostles were first given the authority to lead the Church. This sort of unity Christ desires, is divine unity in love. Jesus is one with the Father and the Holy Spirit, not simply because they share the title of Divine. The Holy Trinity is exists in complete harmony of love and will. In other words, Jesus always ‘wants’ what the Father ‘wants’ and the Holy Spirit always ‘wants’ what the Father ‘wants’ and the Father always ‘wants’ what Jesus and the Holy Spirit ‘want’; which is.....that WE should live in the same community of love and unity.
But this unity is even greater than ‘us humans’ being united. God desires that we are one with each other AND HIM. Later in this prayer Jesus prays, “That they may be one just as We are one; I in them, and You in Me; that they may be made perfect in one.” (John 17.22-23) We are made perfect in our unity with each other and God. This is realized in the living Sacred Tradition of the Church, given by Christ to the Holy Apostles, and maintained by the Holy Fathers of the Church through the centuries.