Second Sunday of Easter, Divine Mercy Sunday
Also Read: Mass Readings for 16 April 2023 Mass Reading Reflection for 16 April 2023
Gospel: John 20: 19-31
Starting with Peter, the most compelling preachers of Jesus were doubtful initially. When Peter was told of the resurrection, his reaction was not, ‘Oh I knew it would happen, for Jesus had told of His death and subsequent resurrection many times when we were with Him.’ Instead, he ran to the empty tomb in total disbelief. But he was given multiple compelling visions of the resurrected Jesus. He was forgiven of his denying Jesus on a fateful night. Finally, he embarked on leading the preaching apostles and disciples from the day of Pentecost. He was undeterred by the opposition he faced even to his final moment on the cross upside down. It was never an easy journey, but he cared little. Resurrected Jesus mattered to him the most.
Even when ten of his companions vouched that Jesus is alive again, Thomas was adamant to see and touch Him to believe in the resurrection. He was granted his wish to touch and feel the resurrected Jesus. He reciprocated the special privilege by going the farthest from among the apostles, up to India, to proclaim the resurrected Jesus. He never looked back as Jesus mattered the most to him.
Saul was sure to the core that resurrected Jesus was a fairytale and sense had to be restored even if it meant killing a few of the proponents. But Jesus intervened and his travel to Damascus got aborted, he ended up being the most vociferous preacher of resurrected Jesus. He was preaching restlessly of the resurrected Jesus traveling back and forth until his martyrdom. He penned the first and most of the books of the New Testament. Saul became St. Paul. Nothing mattered to him except Jesus.
Down the line, many who tasted the Divine Mercy followed suit. They did not care about their safety, comfort, and well-being. Some of them are called saints, martyrs, and doctors of the church. They exchanged everything for Christ because everything else mattered little to them.
On the Sunday of The Divine Mercy, all of them are remembered gratefully for the way they have responded to the Divine Mercy they received. They did not sleep over the mercy they have received. They went ahead distributing the mercy they have received. That is the reason for us being Christians. That is why we have heard of Jesus Christ who sacrificed His life on the cross to grant us forgiveness and redemption.
The Divine Mercy made them proactive. The Divine Mercy cannot be contained, it keeps flowing. This Sunday calls us to be channels of the Divine Mercy. Draw from the rich fountain of the Divine Mercy. Avail for yourself forgiveness, peace, and love flowing from the Divine fountain without measure, and keep it flowing to everyone you happen to meet. It is given without measure, give it without measure.
Let us channel peace and mercy into our homes, communities, and parishes. Let us channel them to our streets, markets, and governance. Channel them to our schools, colleges, hospitals, and hospices. This Sunday Jesus is calling us to be His deputies wherever peace, love, and mercy are needed the most. He is looking forward to us just as He trusted Peter, Thomas, Paul, and the rest of them to be channels of the Divine Mercy. None of us have gone through the kind of experience they had. Faith in the resurrected Jesus was given as patrimony for most of us. We have, thus, received more mercy. We can be effective channels of Divine Mercy just like them.
It is our privilege to receive the Divine Mercy, every day in our lives. It is our sacred duty to channel the Divine Mercy to others every day. Resurrected Jesus repeatedly blesses all of us, ‘Peace be with you’.