His Resurrection has Changed Everything

Divine Mercy Sunday
By Fr. Chinnappan Pelavendran

The resurrection of Jesus was a new experience for the disciples, even though Jesus had often explained to them about His resurrection. The apostles must have been afraid beginning on Holy Thursday, because their friend and the messiah was dead. They all abandoned Him. His own disciple betrayed Him. The crowd which welcomed Jesus with palms turned against Him and called for the release of Barabbas. The apostles, now afraid of the crowd, stayed in their homes for their own protection.

The harmony among the first Christians that we see in our first reading is the fruit of Jesus’ resurrection. The new community, gathered around the resurrection, was no longer afraid. In the second reading, St. Peter reminds us that we have been transformed through the resurrection of Jesus. His resurrection gave us a new birth and hope. Through our baptism, we share in Jesus’ resurrection. St. Peter reminds us that we have “an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading.” The resurrection of Jesus has changed everything. Nothing will ever again be the same.

Look at how Thomas changed. Before he met the risen Jesus he was depressed, absent from the group of apostles, and disbelieving. At first, he said: “Unless I see the mark of the nails in his hands and put my finger into the nail marks and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.” (John 20:25) After seeing the Risen Jesus, he proclaimed: “My Lord and My God.” (John 20:28) What a difference after seeing Jesus: from fear to Joy, seclusion to the mission, absence to presence, disbelief to faith, and a mere existence to new life. His life was completely changed after seeing Jesus.

Jesus presented Himself to His disciples during their time of fear and confusion. He restored their peace. He commissioned them as ministers of the sacraments. The sacrament of reconciliation is the sacrament of mercy.

As we celebrate today Divine Mercy Sunday, we are reminded that God extended His mercy to us by allowing His son to pay the ransom for our sins. Christ accomplished this through His paschal mystery.

We must also extend this mercy to others. We are called to be apostles of mercy. As we spread the good news of Christ’s resurrection, we must thank God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ because His Mercy and generosity endure forever.

We, too, are the witnesses of the Risen Lord. We shall certainly encounter people who will doubt our faith. This must not discourage us; we must remain focused on our mission. So, as the true disciple of Christ, let us continue to announce the good news to the whole world that Jesus Christ, our Lord has truly risen from the dead.

Today, Jesus invites us to see Him and touch Him. He invites us to encounter his wounded and glorified body. In that encounter with Jesus, he will help us to have faith in Him. One day, despite our wounds and weaknesses, our bodies will be glorified like Him.

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