Today’s Gospel reading is the story of the Risen Lord appearing to the Apostles in a locked room. Imagine their surprise when Jesus appears, greets them with “Peace be with you!” and allows Thomas to touch Jesus’ wounds in order to prove that He is not just a mirage.
A perfect reading to reflect upon for Divine Mercy Sunday as it shows Jesus bringing peace to followers who were fearful. How much of our lives and those of others are dominated by fears, some real but most imagined? How seldom do we realize what fear does to us, sapping us of energy, focus and an awareness of God’s presence amongst us. Magnify this across the world and you find millions desperately wanting not just food or clothing but love and peace.
So how does this relate to Divine Mercy Sunday?
God promises us Mercy- Pope Francis constantly reminds us of that fact- a mercy which is grounded on knowing God is and allowing Him to bring us peace. We can be sure of finding mercy from God when we sin or are suffering. But that is only part of the story for, as Christians, we are called to extend mercy to others and this means concretely forgiving and repeating Jesus’ words “Peace be with you!” even to those who consider us enemies. Not an easy task but one that is integral to being a follower of Christ and one for which God will give us the strength to do (if we want to do so!). So, Divine Mercy Sunday is not just about celebrating who God is but bringing peace to our relationships, families, workplaces and society through forgiveness of even to those who have hurt us deeply.
Mission Doctors extend the mercy of donors who support this important work of healing the sick and suffering of the world. Please assist this work through prayer and financial contributions. God bless and Happy Divine Mercy Sunday!
Brother John Kiesler, OFM