Pastor’s Corner for the Second Sunday of Easter, Year A, by Rev. Fr. Nobert Munekani SJ
Divine Mercy Sunday is celebrated on the second Sunday of Easter and is a religious observance celebrated mostly among Catholics. This year, it takes place on April 16. It is a significant time for reflection on the Christian faith. As Pope John Paul II stated, “It is a time where we are blessed with divine mercy as it reaches us through the heart of Christ crucified.” Divine Mercy Sunday focuses on the gifts that flowed from Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection — his mercy and love that were so freely given to humanity after such a betrayal. Divine Mercy Sunday concludes the Easter celebrations and welcomes the ultimate gift that Christ gave after his crucifixion.
HISTORY OF DIVINE MERCY SUNDAY
The story of Divine Mercy Sunday is thousands of years old. However, the official recognition of the day was only authenticated by the Vatican in 2000. Pope John Paul II declared the Sunday after Easter to be called “Divine Mercy Sunday.” Since that declaration, it has been marked in the General Roman Calendar as a religious observance celebrated by Catholics worldwide.
The significance of the day can be attributed to St. Faustina Kowalska, a Polish nun who experienced visions from Christ himself. Born in 1905, she served her parish well and communed with Jesus on several occasions where he communicated with her that he wished to be “a refuge and a shelter for all souls, and especially for poor sinners.” St. Faustina, also known as the ‘Secretary of Divine Mercy,’ died in 1938 in Krakow at age 33 after suffering from Tuberculosis.
Divine Mercy Sunday is a space specifically designated for those who feel unworthy of God’s love and Jesus’s acceptance. In a vision, he told St. Faustina, “I pour out a whole ocean of graces upon those souls who approach the fount of My mercy.” Divine Mercy Sunday, from its advent, has been a source of reconciliation with faith and God’s mercy. It provides a specific day on which people from all walks of life can humble themselves before God, and ask for his mercy, love, and forgiveness, which he grants to all those who are willing to ask for it. It is also about forgiveness and mercy, how Jesus offered his to us, and how we should act in kind throughout our lives.
As We experienced the climax of God’s love and mercy on the cross. Let us not be shy to ask God for pardon whenever we falter.
For the sick
Let us continue to pray for the sick members of our parish especially Benedicta Ngwebelele and Andrew Ledwaba
Fr. N. Munekani SJ