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RELIGION LITURGY AND LIFE

SECOND SUNDAY OF EASTER DIVINE MERCY SUNDAY

DOUBTING THOMAS

DOUBTING THOMAS

Today is the Second Sunday of the Easter Season and it also known as Divine Mercy Sunday. In the Gospel reading for this day we see Thomas the apostle or as he is often called Doubting Thomas and I think  in many ways we are like doubting Thomas full of DOUBTS about what happens in matters of faith. In the Gospel Reading, the risen Jesus appears to ten of his apostles. Thomas is missing. The ten are convinced; but when Thomas rejoins them after Jesus has vanished, Thomas is highly sceptical as we would be if we were in his shoes. Thomas had trusted Jesus and believed he was the Messiah as we trust in Jesus and know he is the Messiah the Son of God.  The Romans killed Jesus and, with Jesus, the hope in Jesus that Thomas had. How much Thomas trusted before the crucifixion can be understood by the way Thomas hardened his heart against trust in the aftermath. “The bigger they are, the harder they fall,” we say. And the bigness of Thomas’s heart and the greatness of his trust in Jesus can be seen by how hard Thomas fell when he thought his trust was betrayed.

Thomas presents a contrast. He wants to physically probe Jesus’ body to confirm the miraculous. Yet when confronted with Jesus invitation to touch him (v. 27), Thomas backs off. He rapidly comes to his senses and confesses his faith: “My Lord and My God.” He accepts Jesus’ new invitation: “Do not persist in your disbelief, but become a believer.”Writing for a later generation of followers  who were gradually being deprived of apostolic witnesses by death, John composed the story of Thomas and the “beatitude” that concludes today’s episode: “Truly worthy of esteem are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”It is precisely because  we live by faith and in faith that we believe in the things unseen and we remember the words of Jesus in the Gospel when he said “Happy are those who have not seen and yet believe.”

Today we also celebrate the feast of Divine Mercy a feast in which we hear about the Merciful love that God has for each of us. The Messages of Divine Mercy were passed down to us through the Polish nun Saint Faustina.   Jesus Mercy is powerfully shown in today’s Gospel as the newly-risen Saviour appears to those who had betrayed Him, those who in weakness had run far away from the soldiers and from the mock trials—and from their Master in His three-hour agony and death. As Jesus showed His Divine Mercy to His apostles on this Sunday, the Church urges us to show our gratitude and belief in His never-failing forgiveness for our sins and betrayals of His love. He urges us to pray often for a world that has abandoned His commandments, ignored His words, shunned His healing, and rejected His love. 

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