“You believe in me, Thomas, because you have seen me, says the Lord; blessed are they who have not seen me, but still believe.” John 20:29
Today’s readings feel more relevant and applicable then they have to me, possibly ever. For some weeks now we have not been able to worship as a community, like the apostles did in the first reading. In the second reading we are reminded of the importance of faith amidst the trials we will have to endure before inheriting the promises of Christ. The words in the Gospel that jumped out at me, “Jesus came and stood in their midst and said to them, “Peace be with you.” (John 20:19) I’m not sure about you, but my life has not been very peaceful lately. Thankfully we can find peace in God’s Divine Mercy, which is what we are celebrating today.
The message of Divine Mercy came to us through St. Faustina Kowalska. Through her faith, Jesus revealed the heart of the Gospel in a way that was unique and beautiful. Through her diaries we are able to understand God’s love for sinners in a whole new way. St. John Paul II found richness in her diaries and he wanted the world to experience it. St. John Paul II devoted the second Sunday of Easter to Divine Mercy the same day he canonized her as a Saint, so we can come to know this beautiful and life-giving gift.
How can we find peace in God’s love for sinners when the future of our world is unknown? When we fear or mourn the loss of our loved ones? When wages and job security have been lost? When our lives have been disrupted in a way we cannot comprehend? One of the many prayers attributed to St. Faustina are the words, “Jesus, I trust in you.” What an appropriate prayer for us today. Finding peace and rest in God’s mercy reminds us of what it means to be a people of faith. We are reminded through God’s mercy that the faith is not a set of rules and regulations, but a relationship. Through our relationship with God we can come to know our purpose, a love that is beyond human comprehension, and a kind of forgiveness the words of man will never do justice. In God’s love for us, we can find peace through any storm – even a pandemic.
Jesus said to St. Faustina, “My daughter, let nothing frighten or disconcert you. Remain deeply at peace. Everything is in My hands.” If you are like me and have become complacent in your understanding of mercy, and why it is essential, I invite you to go deeper. God wants us to remember that nothing in this world can take away the peace He offers us through faith and love. God recognizes the challenges you are facing today and wants you to know He is with you. He doesn’t want you to worry about your cancelled celebrations, time away from your loved ones, your lost wages, what tomorrow will bring, or even this pandemic and its effects big and small. He invites you to come to Him in prayer, His word, and His Divine Mercy where you can be at peace in His love for you. Jesus, we trust in you.
“He does not deal with us according to our sins, nor repay us according to our iniquities. For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him; as far as the east is from the west, so far does he remove our transgressions from us.” (Psalm 103:10-12)
– Mary Morasso