Theme of the Sunday: “Blessed Are Those Who Have Not Seen.” These words of the Risen Lord are addressed to all disciples. We meet the Risen Lord in the Sunday gathering of the community. This is the theme of the Gospel which links up with the second reading, particularly the last phrase. If we cannot see the Risen Lord, there is however something else we can see: the community which, through its life, is evidence that Christ is alive and with us (first reading).
Like newborn infants, you must long for the pure, spiritual milk, that in him you may grow to salvation, alleluia.
God of everlasting mercy, who, in the recurrence of the paschal feast kindle the faith of the people you have made your own, increase, we pray, the grace you have bestowed, that all may grasp and rightly understand in what font they have been washed, by whose Spirit they have been reborn, by whose Blood they have been redeemed. Through our Lord…
A reading from the Acts of the Apostles (Acts 2:42-47)
“All who believed were together and had all things in common.”
[The brethren] held steadfastly to the apostles’ teaching and fellowship, to the breaking of the bread and to the prayers. And fear came upon every soul; and many wonders and signs were done through the apostles. And all who believed were together and had all things in common; and they sold their possessions and goods and distributed them to all, as any had need. And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they partook of food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.
The word of the Lord.
RESPONSORIAL PSALM Psalm 118:2-4. 13— l5ab.22-24 (R. 1)
R/. Give praise to the Lord, for he is good; his mercy endures forever.
Let the house of Israel say,
“His mercy endures forever.”
Let the house of Aaron say,
“His mercy endures forever.”
Let those who fear the Lord say,
“His mercy endures forever.” R/.
I was thrust down, thrust down and falling,
but the Lord was my helper.
The Lord is my strength and.my song; he was my saviour.
There are shouts of joy and salvation
in the tents of the just. R/.
The stone that the builders rejected
has become the cornerstone.
By the Lord has this been done, a marvel in our eyes.
This is the day the Lord has made;
let us rejoice in it and be glad. R/.
A reading from the first Letter of Saint Peter (1 Peter1:3-9)
“We have been born anew to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.”
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! By his great mercy we have been born anew to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and to an inheritance which is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, who by God’s power are guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. In this you rejoice, though now for a little while you may have to suffer various trials, so that the genuineness of your faith, more precious than gold which though perishable is tested by fire, may redound to praise and glory and honour at the revelation of Jesus Christ. Without having seen him you love him; though you do not now see him you believe in him and rejoice with unutterable and exalted joy. As the outcome of your faith you obtain the salvation of your souls.
The word of the Lord.
ALLELUIA John 20:29
Alleluia. You believed, Thomas, because you have seen me, says the Lord; blessed are those who have not seen and yet believe. Alleluia.
“Eight days later Jesus came.”
A reading from the holy Gospel according to John (John 20: 19 – 31)
On the evening of that day, the first day of the week, the doors being shut where the disciples were, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.” When he had said this, he showed them his hands and his side. Then the disciples were glad when they saw the Lord. Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, even so I send you.” And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.” Now Thomas, one of the Twelve, called the Twin, was not with them when Jesus came. So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord.” But he said to them, “Unless I see in his hands the print of the nails, and place my finger in the mark of the nails, and place my hand in his side, I will not believe.” Eight days later, his disciples were again in the house, and Thomas was with them. The doors were shut, but Jesus came and stood among them, and said, “Peace be with you.” Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here, and see my hands; and put out your hand, and place it in my side; do not be faithless, but believing.” Thomas answered him, “My Lord and my God!” Jesus said to him, “You have believed because you have seen me. Blessed are those who have not seen and yet believe.” Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; but these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in his name.
The Gospel of the Lord.
The second Sunday of Easter is traditionally observed as Divine Mercy Sunday. In one of the visions of Saint Faustina Kowalska, Jesus said to her, “Humanity will never find peace until it turns with trust to Divine Mercy.” We see traces of this Divine Mercy in the gospel reading of today. Jesus appears to the disciples and appoints them to become agents of his mercy. The most practical way of showing this mercy is in the forgiveness of sins. This is at the heart of the Easter message. Jesus died and rose again that he may take our sins away. “Divine mercy becomes the Easter gift the church receives from the risen Christ and offers to humanity. “Jesus forgives our sins, but also empowers us to forgive others. the peace with which he greeted his disciples will reign in our lives and society if we all have this mind of Jesus in forgiving one another.