Sunday, 7 April 2013
Today is known as Divine Mercy Sunday (the idea came from the blessed Pope John Paul II) and marks the end of the octave of the present liturgical year- eight day celebration from the feast of Easter. As Christians we use the eight days to reflect deeply on the mystery of Christ’s death on the cross and victory over death- his resurrection from the dead- with the assistance of the Holy Spirit.
In today’s gospel, John 20, 19-31, we are exposed to the joy of Christ’s resurrection with the account of Thomas’ pessimism- he was an incurable pessimist. Ever since Christ resurrected from the dead on Easter Sunday, we have been witnessing the glory of his resurrection, though slowly but surely. After Christ had risen from the dead, Thomas and some other apostles were still doubtful and weak in faith until Christ appeared to them to prove to them that the news they had heard about his resurrection were not shams. It may seem very easy to cast reproach on Thomas for being too doubtful and pessimistic about Christ’s resurrection but truly some of us, given the way we lead our lives, still need Jesus to appear to us and ask us to dip our hands into his wounds before we believe he is truly the messiah. You are not any different from Thomas when you doubt God’s ability to turn around your ugly situations. You are a doubting Thomas when you jump from one church to another seeking for miracle or ministerial salvation. Your pessimism is more incurable than Thomas’ when you deviate from your faith or lead others astray in pursuit of earthly things that are transient. You’re asking God for the proof of his resurrection each time you question him about every hardship you’re passing through. Each time you worry so much about your setbacks or your unexpected circumstances in life that you begin to ask whether Christ truly exists or not, you’re asking God to show you the wounds of his passion, his pierced hands and side.
With today’s gospel message we are expected to cast aside our doubts in God and always have faith in him because by our faith in him and our conversion we receive the treasure of his Divine Mercy.