April 8, 2018: Divine Mercy Sunday Second Sunday of Easter
Catholic Social Teaching: Care for God’s Creation
Serious ecological problems call for an effective change of mentality leading to the adoption of new lifestyles, “in which the quest for truth, beauty, goodness and communion with others for the sake of the common good are the factors that determine consumer choices, savings and investments”. These lifestyles should be inspired by sobriety, temperance, and self-discipline at both the individual and social levels. There is a need to break with the logic of mere consumption and promote forms of agricultural and industrial production that respect the order of creation and satisfy the basic human needs of all. These attitudes, sustained by a renewed awareness of the interdependence of all the inhabitants of the earth, will contribute to eliminating the numerous causes of ecological disasters as well as guaranteeing the ability to respond quickly when such disasters strike peoples and territories.The ecological question must not be faced solely because of the frightening prospects that environmental destruction represents; rather it must above all become a strong motivation for an authentic solidarity of worldwide dimensions. (486) Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church
First Reading: Acts 4:32-35
Psalm: 118:2-4, 13-15, 22-24
Second Reading: 1st John 5:1-6
Gospel: John 20:19-31 (Cycles A, B and C)
Catechism of the Catholic Church
The transmission of the Christian faith consists primarily in proclaiming Jesus Christ in order to lead others to faith in him. From the beginning, the first disciples burned with the desire to proclaim Christ: “We cannot but speak of what we have seen and heard.”‘ It And they invite people of every era to enter into the joy of their communion with Christ:
That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon and touched with our hands, concerning the word of life – the life was made manifest, and we saw it, and testify to it, and proclaim to you the eternal life which was with the Father and was made manifest to us- that which we have seen and heard we proclaim also to you, so that you may have fellowship with us; and our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. And we are writing this that our joy may be complete. (425) From the Daily Roman Missal, Introduction Divine Mercy Sunday Second Sunday of Easter, Cycle B
Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church:
John 20:19, 21, 26
The promise of peace that runs through the entire Old Testament finds its fulfilment in the very person of Jesus. Peace, in fact, is the messianic attribute par excellence, in which all other beneficial effects of salvation are included. The Hebrew word “shalom” expresses this fullness of meaning in its etymological sense of “completeness” (cf. Is 9:5ff; Mic 5:1-4). The kingdom of the Messiah is precisely the kingdom of peace (cf. Job 25:2; Ps 29:11; 37:11; 72:3,7; 85:9,11; 119:165; 125:5, 128:6; 147:14; Song 8:10; Is 26:3,12; 32:17f.; 52:7; 54:10; 57:19; 60:17; 66:12; Hag 2:9; Zech 9:10; et al.). Jesus “is our peace” (Eph 2:14). He has broken down the dividing wall of hostility among people, reconciling them with God (cf. Eph 2:14-16). This is the very effective simplicity with which Saint Paul indicates the radical motivation spurring Christians to undertake a life and a mission of peace.
On the eve of his death, Jesus speaks of his loving relation with the Father and the unifying power that this love bestows upon his disciples. It is a farewell discourse which reveals the profound meaning of his life and can be considered a summary of all his teaching. The gift of peace is the seal on his spiritual testament: “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you” (Jn 14:27). The words of the Risen Lord will not be any different; every time that he meets his disciples they receive from him the greeting and gift of peace: “Peace be with you” (Lk 24:36; Jn 20:19,21,26). (491)
Faith is transmission of love. Love from the Father to the Son. Love from the Son to those who believe. Love of believers to keep the commandments offering light and hope in the world. A chain of love never unbroken by the Divine, a gift for us to live and share. For love exists not as a concrete fact, but ever present manifestation of everlasting belief.
Jesus desires us to experience that love even when we doubt, for He returned to Thomas. With Jesus, His love is persistent without being pestering. He desires not to be a nuisance, but nudges us to surrender into Divine embrace. Something so powerful, we only deny it with our freewill stubbornness listing us away.
Divine love manifests strength and courage. The strength of love to overcome discord, remedy sorrow, affirm mission and purpose hope. Love and courage may seem at opposite perimeters of the spectrum, but courage rises out of love to remedy deficits of communication, injustice and despair.
We can close doors all around us to communication, dialogue, support mainly out of fear of unknown possibilities. Sitting amidst our closed doors Jesus offers us peace. The courage to get out of our chair, grasp the door handle to at least take a peek into the ocean of mercy awaiting us when we step out of our isolation into sharing faith with love in action. A faith realizing we own nothing and what we think we possess is really God’s. If we live with one heart and mind in union with the Father, we should only use resources we need not lavishing for desires. For that witnesses to the resurrection of the Lord, if we share justly and equitably not selfishly.
What signs and presence of Jesus have you seen in your life, even today, that gives you life? How will you write those experiences literally and figuratively in the world that you and others may come to believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God? An act of faith to continue the manifestation of the transmission of Divine love.
Individual Reflection: John 20:19-31
What doors do you need to open in your life of faith?
Family Reflection: 1st John 5:1-6
Register your acts of kindness to honor the memory of Dr Martin Luther King Jr:
Prayer: The Divine Mercy Chaplet in song
Blogs to Visit:
As we reflect upon Mary’s presence in the mysteries of the Rosary, we are blessed to know her. For her journey, a timeless trek, calls us to surrender, continuing conversion, humbleness and justice now.
Weekly lectionary reflections, for faith sharing groups, parish bulletins, newsletters or personal prayer, from the synergy of the Word we hear and the rich tradition of Catholic Social Teaching.
Catholic Social Teaching offers seven principles for upholding life in our thoughts, decisions and actions.
How we do Catholic Social Teaching.
Creation sustainability ministry resources in the spirit of the St Francis Pledge.
Social Ministry Resources Engaging Parishes: Monthly and liturgical seasons resources for use with parish websites, bulletins and newsletters
List one or two upcoming events, legislative action alerts or social justice websites
By Barb Born April 3, 2018 The reflection maybe used in parish bulletins, newsletters or for faith sharing groups without copyright concern.