“’I desire Mercy, not sacrifice.’ 8Apr2018

For I came not to call the righteous, but sinners” (Mt. 9:13). That’s us. Yes, I know that you know that but, on my part anyway, it seems a simple truth I find easy to forget or, worse yet, ignore, so these words from St. Faustina’s diary seem especially appropriate today:

Toward the end of the service (on Divine Mercy Sunday), when the priest took the Blessed Sacrament to bless the people, I saw the Lord Jesus as he is represented in the image. The Lord gave His blessing, and the rays extended over the whole world. …I heard a voice,                                           “This Feast emerged from the very depths of My mercy, and it is confirmed in the vast depths of my tender mercies. Every soul believing and trusting in My mercy will obtain it” (Diary, 420).

Now, notice the words of doubting Thomas, when Jesus came, although the doors were locked and confronted his doubts; he declares, “My Lord and my God!” He believes because he has seen and Jesus comments, “Blessed are those who have not seen and have believed.” Again, that’s us. We believe even though we have not seen… or have we? Can we honestly say that we have not seen the Lord or His miracles?

St. Thomas Aquinas lived twelve hundred years after the apostle, doubting Thomas, and, as a great theologian, gave us the foundation for our current theology by exploring its depths, but did you know he also had a great love for the Eucharist, the Blessed Sacrament? He gave us the hymns, Tantum Ergo, Pange Lingua and O Salutaris, when the Pope instituted the feast of Corpus Christi in 1264. He is also the one who first suggested that, at Mass, when the priest raises the Host and the Chalice at the consecration, we should strike our breast and proclaim silently the words of doubting Thomas, “My Lord and my God!” Yes, like him, we believe because we have seen! Look at the elevated Host and see the face of Jesus, for the Eucharist is closely tied to His Mercy.

“My daughter, tell the whole world about My inconceivable mercy. I desire that the Feast of Mercy be a refuge and shelter for all souls, and especially for poor sinners. On that day the very depths of My tender mercy are open. I pour out a whole ocean of graces upon those souls who approach the Fount of My Mercy. The soul that will go to Confession and receive Holy Communion shall obtain complete forgiveness of sins and punishment” (Diary, 699).

Deacon Richard

 

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