Divine Mercy Sunday

(Acts of the Apostles 4:32-35; 1 John 5: 1-6; John 20: 19-31)

Divine Mercy Sunday is a relatively new addition to the Church’s liturgical year. In 2000 Saint John Paul II designed the Sunday after Easter as Divine Mercy Sunday (flowing from a devotion to Christ’s Divine Mercy by a Polish nun, St. Maria Faustina Kowalska).

Who doesn’t want mercy for ourselves? I mean we are only human and after all, we can sin, be rude to others, or selfishly ignoring the suffering of people around us. After such times we plead for mercy and desire to be forgiven. Sometimes, others are merciful to us- other times grudges develop which become lifelong chains around peoples’ necks. But our God never refuses mercy and is always willing to forgive and help us to live a life which accords to our innate dignity as ‘sons and daughters of God’. Our God is a God of Mercy.

So what does this mean for us? Mercy is not an abstract intellectual concept but a term applied to real life. How forgiving are we? How loving are we? How charitable are we to other’s sins, failings and blindness? How easy it is nowadays to view life in ‘black and white’ categories- ‘good guys and bad guys’- with no nuance, forgiveness, second-chances or belief in our common humanity. The celebration of Divine Mercy Sunday should remind us of our God’s endless love but also challenge us to be merciful and loving to those around us. So how loving are we to family? Friends? Those whose political views are different (sadly, nowadays cultural Marxism has infested society, causing us to see those who think differently as enemies to be  feared or ridiculed through name calling rather than as partners for  reasoned dialogue)?

Today on Divine Mercy Sunday- put mercy into action for those around you- show love in actions!

The doctors of Mission Doctors put God’s Mercy into action through their works of healing the poor, please help them materially and spiritually.

Happy Divine Mercy Sunday!

Br. John Kiesler, OFM

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