2nd Sunday after Easter

April 16, 2023

Today we celebrate the 2nd Sunday of Easter (or Sunday of Divine Mercy). For the next six weeks we celebrate anew the glorious Resurrection of our Savior. Our season is filled with joyful Alleluias and our scriptures tell us of the early Church’s preaching of the Good News. Our Gospels tell us of the many appearances of Jesus to His disciples after His Resurrection and lead up to the great commission  on Ascension Day where He tells them, “Go, therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.” Where would they get the strength and conviction to fulfill this commission? Jesus tells them to prepare to receive the Holy Spirit, the Paraclete (Advocate), whom He will send from the Father. During our Easter season we are called to listen and re-learn the great commission we have all received and prepare our hearts to receive anew the promised gift of the Holy Spirit.

During the pontificate of our late Holy Father, St. John Paul II, he introduced to the universal Church the devotion he was most familiar with as a native son of Poland; the Divine Mercy Devotion. The image of the Divine Mercy was revealed to a humble nun, St. Faustina Kowalski, who was commanded to make this image known and foster its spread. St. Faustina revealed the image of Christ, Risen from the dead, with two rays emanating from His Sacred Heart, the Blood and water that flow from His heart to all who will receive it. The prayer that accompanies it says, “O Blood and water, which gushed forth from the Heart of Jesus as a fount of mercy for us, I trust in You.” On this Sunday, the Gospel from St. John has our Lord appearing to the frightened disciples, huddled behind locked doors. He greets them with, “Peace be with you,” then reveals the wound marks from His Passion. Then He says again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I send you.” Then He breathes on them and says, “Receive the Holy Spirit. Whose sins you shall forgive are forgiven them, and whose sins you retain are retained.” Here Jesus gives the power of forgiveness (mercy) to His apostles and their successors for all time. He bestows the way we can all continue to receive His mercy and love in the Sacrament of Penance. As we celebrate Divine Mercy Sunday, may we receive the grace to use this Sacrament often as a means of receiving the Lord’s love, and hear His words, “Peace be with you!”

On Holy Saturday, our stone mason, Pat Byrne, completed the repair work of the stone wall on Bellevue. If you haven’t noticed it yet, please stop by and see it. Pat was not only able to strengthen the wall, straighten the fencing, but also match the stone and restore the wall to its original beauty. As I watched him and his crew it was amazing to see the talent and skill God blessed them with. Another capital improvement to our beautiful campus. Thanks Pat!

God Bless! Happy Eastertide!

Please continue

praying 3 Hail Marys. Fr. Pete