DIVINE MERCY SUNDAY, YEAR C
24th April 2022
Acts 5:12-16; Apocalypse 1:9-13,17-19; John 20:19-31.
Today we celebrate the Divine Mercy of God. The gospel told the story of how the apostles encountered the risen Lord. The risen lord appeared to his apostles bearing in his body the wounds of the crucifixion. He commissioned them through the power of the Holy Spirit to forgive sins. He said to them: ‘Receive the Holy Spirit. For those whose sins you forgive, they are forgiven; for those whose sins you retain, they are retained.’ The forgiveness of sin is the merit of the passion and death of Jesus. It becomes available to us through the influence of the Holy Spirit.
Asking for forgiveness from God is not difficult if we allow the Holy Spirit to guide us to the father. Although we did not witness the crucifixion like the apostles, it does not deprive us of the grace to be forgiven. Jesus said to Thomas: ‘You believe because you can see me. Happy are those who have not seen and yet believe.’ Jesus wants us to look at the cross and be convinced that our sins can be forgiven when we ask for forgiveness. The confessional is a place of grace where we can find joy. The apostles were filled with joy when they encountered the Lord in their hiding place with the doors locked. They received the mercy of God and in turn are made ministers of God’s mercy.
God’s mercy is powerful enough to unlock the closed doors of our hearts. Imagine the genuine feeling of joy that awaits us after every good confession. Only forgiveness can remove from us the fear, guilt, pride and emptiness that is associated with sin. How long are you going to live with guilt of your sin and pretend it doesn’t affect you. Let us allow the Holy Spirit to motivate us towards the Divine Mercy of God.
Fr Anthony Ekpunobi, CM.