Second Sunday of Easter - 8th April, 2018

Liturgical Reflection

Acts 4:32-35



After our magnificent celebration of the Feast of the Resurrection we begin to reflect on the themes present in the scripture readings of the Easter Season.  On this second Sunday, also given the title Divine Mercy Sunday, we see in the readings that mercy, faith and hope stand out as the over-riding themes for our reflection.  Listen to the prayer of Pope Francis quoted from his Daily Reflections.

Life has conquered death. Mercy and love have conquered sin! We need faith and hope to open ourselves to this new and marvellous horizon. And we know that faith and hope are gifts from God, and we need to ask for them: Lord, grant me faith, grant me hope! I need them so much.

The theme of mercy is constant in both the Hebrew and the New Testament writings.  Psalm 25:6 reads:

Be mindful of your mercy, O Lord and of your steadfast love for they have been from of old.

The gospel reading today is from St John and records the meeting of Jesus with his disciples after the resurrection.  He comes and stands amongst them.  These disciples are in a state of sorrow because some have been less than faithful.  Some ran away in fear when Jesus was hunted.  Peter denied Jesus when he was alone and in need of support.  Yet they are living in hope that Jesus will be merciful and forgiving.  Jesus indeed comes in peace.  He even gives the doubting Thomas a second chance!  We are constantly in need of that same mercy.  Mercy is a ‘love’ that responds to human need in a free and unmerited way.  Just as this mercy has been given to us so we extend it to others.

The lovely little Easter Sequence, used on Easter Sunday and listed as an option every day of Easter week, ends with the words, “Lord Jesus, Victor King, show us mercy.”

We have been gifted this Easter with the love of our community, priests and friends.  Let us be grateful.

Sr Pamela Davis OP