Second Sunday of Easter (Divine Mercy Sunday) w/e 4/10-4/11
The figure of “doubting Thomas”, brought forth in today’s gospel selection taken from John, is so popular and recognizable that he has been carried over into the lexicon of the public square. There is an easy answer as to why this is so and why he has endured in the minds of people to this day. Thomas is a figure whose pride and stubborn nature lead him to announce with arrogance that he will never believe in the Risen Lord Jesus until he has proof, until he can see and feel for himself that Jesus has been raised despite the torture of His suffering and death. Most ordinary and everyday folks can resonate with Thomas’ prideful stance. We are a people who believe that the proof is in the pudding and we serve as the official taster. Jesus comes back to visit with the disciples on another occasion after He is risen and this time Thomas is there with the group. Knowing that Thomas has been prideful and arrogant in His absence, Jesus said to him, “put your fingers here and see my hands and bring your hand and put it into my side, and do not be unbelieving but believe!” Thomas’ response is one of humble acquiescence and he proclaims Jesus as Lord. Jesus’ response is a lesson not only for Thomas but for all of us who would profess faith in the Risen Lord at Easter. “Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” Active faith is a movement of the very life of God within our hearts, in other words grace, and comes alive as we make humbly profession of our faith in the story of salvation which has been played out in the Triduum of the past days. The story of Jesus’ life, death and Resurrection is one which continues to be told through the lively and expressive medium of human living, doing and believing. It is a story formative of human hearts and one which directs hope toward life in God. It is a story at whose center is the celebration of the Eucharist, a communion with the blessing cup of Christ and the act which urges community to be united in peace and united to God. We celebrate the Easter Season and all that comes with it reminded that our destiny is in Christ who offers us the peace of reassurance that we are loved by God and called to love one another. This Sunday is also celebrated as Divine Mercy Sunday and so we give thanks for the mercy of Jesus offered from the gentle goodness of His Sacred Heart so that the world and all in it might know peace. We are called on this day to be reconciled to God by the kindness of the mercy of Christ in whom we live and move and have our being.
We thank you for you generosity to the Clergy Benefit and Retirement Fund to which will go the entire Easter collection. If you have not yet given, please consider a gift to this important work. It benefits good and dedicated priests, especially as we get older and more in need of medical and other assistance. Thank you as well for your ongoing gifts to the Catholic Appeal. We are struggling to reach our goal of $30,000, and we ask you to remember that we will owe whatever shortfall there is at the end of the campaign. Please let us work to satisfy the goal. Lastly, please let me thank those who have given to the Improved Audio and Sound System Collection. We have experienced a drastic and welcome increase in the quality of our sound and streaming since the improvements were made.
Thanks and have a great week.
God Bless, Fr. Joe