Second Easter Sunday

By: p. José Miguel González

Divine Mercy

April 11, 2021

The group of believers had only one heart and one soul.

Thank the Lord because his mercy is good, because his mercy is eternal.

Who is the one who overcomes the world but who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?

“Because you’ve seen me, have you believed me? Blessed are those who believe without having seen.”

 

Readings

First Reading

Reading the Acts of the Apostles 4, 32-35

The group of believers had only one heart and one soul: no one called his own anything he had, for they possessed everything in common.
The Apostles testified to the Resurrection of the Lord Jesus with great courage.
And he looked at them all with great pleasure. Among them there was no need, for those who owned lands or houses sold them, brought the money from what was sold, and put it at the feet of the apostles; then it was distributed to everyone according to what they needed.

 

Psalm

Psalm 117, 2-4.16ab-18.22-24

R/. Thank the Lord because his mercy is good, because his mercy is eternal.

Say the house of Israel: eternal is your mercy.
Say the house of Aron: eternal is his mercy.
Say the faithful of the Lord: eternal is his mercy. R/.

“The right hand of the Lord is powerful, the right hand of the Lord is exalted.”
I must not die, I will live to tell the exploits of the Lord.
He punished me, the Lord punished me, but he did not give me to death. R/.

The stone that the architects discarded is now the cornerstone.
It is the Lord who has done so, it has been a clear miracle.
This is the day the Lord made: be our joy and joy. R/.

 

Second Reading

Reading the Apostle John’s First Letter 5, 1-6

Dear Brothers:
All who believe that Jesus is the Christ is born of God; and everyone who loves the one who gives the being also loves the one who is born of him.
In this we know that we love God’s children: if we love God and keep His commandments.
For this is the love of God: that we keep his commandments. And his commandments are not heavy, for all that is born of God overcomes the world. And what has achieved victory over the world is our faith.
Who is the one who overcomes the world but who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?
This is the one who came by water and blood: Jesus Christ. Not only in water, but in water and blood; and it is the Spirit who bears witness, because the Spirit is the truth.

 

gospel

Reading the Holy Gospel according to St. John 20, 19-31

At dusk that day, the first of the week, the disciples were in a house, with the doors closed for fear of the Jews. And this is what Jesus entered into, stood in the midst, and said, “Peace unto you.”
And, saying this, he showed them the hands and the side. And the disciples were filled with joy at seeing the Lord. Jesus repeated:
“Peace to you. As the Father has sent me, so have I.”
And, having said that, he blew upon them and said:
“Receive the Holy Ghost; Those who forgive their sins are forgiven; those who are held back are held back.”
Thomas, one of the Twelve, called the Twin, was not with them when Jesus came. And the other disciples said to him, “We have seen the Lord.”
But he said:
“If I don’t see in his hands the sign of the nails, if I don’t stick my finger in the nail hole and don’t put my hand on his side, I don’t think so.”
At eight days, the disciples and Thomas were back inside with them. Jesus came, when the doors were closed, he stood in the middle and said, “Peace to you.”
Then he said to Thomas:
“Bring your finger, here are my hands; bring your hand and put it on my side; and be not incredulous, but a believer.”
Thomas replied, “My Lord and my God!”
Jesus said to him:
“Because you’ve seen me, have you believed me? Blessed are those who believe without having seen.”
Many other signs, which are not written in this book, Jesus made in the sight of the disciples. These have been written to believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that, believing, they may have life in his name.

Comment

Hallelujah The Lord is risen!

The Church continues to joyfully celebrate the Lord’s Resurrection, her triumph over sin and death, throughout the liturgical time of Easter. We too, in one heart and in the same spirit, as the first Christians of the Jerusalem community, remain united to the whole Church spread throughout the world, flooded with Easter joy.

St. John Paul II instituted, on this second Sunday of Easter, the Sunday of Divine Mercy. God’s mercy and forgiveness for all mankind spring from the open side of Jesus and from his wounds. Pope Francis reminds us that Mercy is the name of God, that is, its essence; for God is the infinite mercy that has been manifested to us in Jesus Christ, divine and merciful love, incarnate, dead, and risen for our salvation. His mercy is eternal, transcends time and space, extends from the present to the past and future of humanity, anywhere in the universe. In Christ, God the Father has had mercy on all mankind and every human being in particular. He has become a poor heart – mercy – to make himself available to all and so that we may all feel him close, seeing in Him our own wounds and receiving from Him the strength we need to overcome evil and sin.

We are therefore invited to open ourselves to the divine Mercy offered to us in the Church, the mystical Body of Christ, through the sacraments, visible signs of God’s grace and life. Without forgetting that, having experienced his mercy, we are called to be merciful always, to have a humble heart, to put ourselves at the level of the poorest and most miserable, sharing with them their sufferings, forgiving their offenses, doing with them what God Himself has done with us. Let us never forget this profound, far-reaching invitation, which Yahweh makes to his people through the prophet Osseas, and which makes us every one of us Christians through Jesus Christ: “Mercy I want and not sacrifices, knowledge of God without burnt offerings” (Os 6:6).

Today’s Word of God continues to teach us and show Jesus, alive and risen, in our midst. He is the center of our faith and our lives, in whom we find true peace and joy. He is the Word of the Father, which becomes present every time two or more of us come together in his name. He is the Light in the darkness, the Water that soothes our deepest thirst, the living bread lowered from heaven for our salvation. Jesus Christ is the stone discarded by the architects, by the wise and understood, who, by killing him, intended to drive him out of creation, without realizing that everything has been created in Him, by Him, and for Him; He is the cornerstone on which rests the building of the whole Church, of which we are part of baptism, as living stones, called to have and communicate the same new life that we receive from Christ by faith in Him.

Saint John, the disciple who from a very young age knew and followed Jesus, from the maturity of his life and faith, writes to the early Christians with depth and determination. He also says to us, “Who is the one who overcomes the world but the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?” Strengthening our faith in Christ Jesus, maturing in our personal relationship with Him within the Church is the task of this Easter time; it is something fundamental because in it we are going to live, the deep meaning of who we are and do, our future and that of our society.

Jesus Christ, during his mortal life, had formed a group of disciples in the style of the rabbis of his time, and had gradually shown them who He was and what His mission was in the world. Through their teachings and miracles he showed them the way of salvation, transformed their lives, and called them to a follow-up that involved them in the Master’s mission. However, his passion and death, understood as the total failure of his mission, sowed bewilderment in his followers and the disbanded one occurred, also for fear of suffering the same persecution and death of Jesus.

With the Resurrection of Christ begins a new stage in the path of discipleship, in which, through his apparitions, Jesus will rebuild the first community, manifesting to them his new condition, confirming them in faith and sending them to be their witnesses, extensioners and updaters of their saving mission in the world. The new life that Christ has conquered for all mankind with his victory over death could not be extinguished. By the power of the Holy Spirit, the Apostles are constituted in their ministers, that is, servants and communicators of God’s mercy and forgiveness.

So we see it in today’s precious gospel. Christ is resurrected in a house with closed doors, probably the Upper Room, to free his disciples from fear and shame; fear that the Jews would execute them as Jesus; shame at having left the Master alone in his passion and death. To this end Jesus greets them, without claiming anything from them, giving them peace and making them partakers of his own Holy Spirit, for which they are sent to forgive the sins of the world, that is, to be witnesses and ministers of the Father’s mercy that they themselves had experienced, servants and extenders of Christ’s mission in the world.

It is nice and funny the figure of Thomas, and at the same time tender and profound, not accepting the testimony of his companions and having to face his own desire, rational and stubborn, to put his hands on the wounds of Jesus. He was invaded by a sea of doubt from which Christ himself saves him, with patience and delicacy. And from such an encounter we were forever left with the simple prayer that believers in Jesus Christ so often repeat: “My Lord and my God”.

Jesus seizes the moment to pronounce a new bliss: “Blessed are those who believe without having seen me”. It is the bliss in which we are included all who have put our faith in Christ forever and, even without seeing him bodily, even involved in doubts and difficulties, we follow in his footsteps because we have understood that only in Him is true and authentic life.

When asked or asked what the Christian faith is for, what problems it solves, we must understand and respond that faith in the living and risen Christ “serves” that; not to stray from the world and reality, so as not to enter into a solitary, alienating and selfish bubble, to have life in his name, to live in truth and in authentic freedom, to open our eyes to the world around us contemplating the wonders of God and also his miseries, to be in solidarity with the pain of the brothers with whom we share life , to whom Christ sends us to be witnesses and servants of his eternal and merciful love for each of them.

 

Prayer

Because it’s dark now,
because it’s late, my God,
because I’m afraid I’ll lose
the tracks of the road,
don’t leave me alone
And stay with me.

Because I’ve been rebellious
and I’ve sought danger
and I scrutinized curiously
the summits and the abyss,
forgive me, Lord,
And stay with me.

Because I burn in your thirst
and hungry for your wheat,
come, sit at my table,
bless bread and wine.
How fast the afternoon falls!
Stay with me at last!

amen.

 

 

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