DAILY MASS READINGS (April 28, 2019)

2ND SUNDAY OF EASTER/DIVINE MERCY SUNDAY (CYCLE C, White)

Reading 1 (ACTS 5:12-16)

A reading from the Acts of the Apostles

Many signs and wonders were done among the people
at the hands of the apostles.
They were all together in Solomon’s portico.
None of the others dared to join them, but the people esteemed them.
Yet more than ever, believers in the Lord,
great numbers of men and women, were added to them.
Thus they even carried the sick out into the streets
and laid them on cots and mats
so that when Peter came by,
at least his shadow might fall on one or another of them.
A large number of people from the towns
in the vicinity of Jerusalem also gathered,
bringing the sick and those disturbed by unclean spirits,
and they were all cured.

– The word of the Lord.

Responsorial Psalm (PS 118:2-4, 13-15, 22-24)

R. (1) Give thanks to the Lord for he is good, his love is everlasting.
or:
R. Alleluia.
Let the house of Israel say,
“His mercy endures forever.”
Let the house of Aaron say,
“His mercy endures forever.”
Let those who fear the LORD say,
“His mercy endures forever.”
R. Give thanks to the Lord for he is good, his love is everlasting.
or:
R. Alleluia.
I was hard pressed and was falling,
but the LORD helped me.
My strength and my courage is the LORD,
and he has been my savior.
The joyful shout of victory
in the tents of the just:
R. Give thanks to the Lord for he is good, his love is everlasting.
or:
R. Alleluia.
The stone which the builders rejected
has become the cornerstone.
By the LORD has this been done;
it is wonderful in our eyes.
This is the day the LORD has made;
let us be glad and rejoice in it.
R. Give thanks to the Lord for he is good, his love is everlasting.
or:
R. Alleluia.


Reading 2 (REVELATION 1:9-11A, 12-13, 17-19)

A reading from the Book of Revelation

I, John, your brother, who share with you 
the distress, the kingdom, and the endurance we have in Jesus,
found myself on the island called Patmos
because I proclaimed God’s word and gave testimony to Jesus.
I was caught up in spirit on the Lord’s day
and heard behind me a voice as loud as a trumpet, which said,
“Write on a scroll what you see.”
Then I turned to see whose voice it was that spoke to me,
and when I turned, I saw seven gold lampstands
and in the midst of the lampstands one like a son of man,
wearing an ankle-length robe, with a gold sash around his chest.

When I caught sight of him, I fell down at his feet as though dead.
He touched me with his right hand and said, “Do not be afraid.
I am the first and the last, the one who lives.
Once I was dead, but now I am alive forever and ever.
I hold the keys to death and the netherworld.
Write down, therefore, what you have seen,
and what is happening, and what will happen afterwards.”


Alleluia (JOHN 20:29)

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
You believe in me, Thomas, because you have seen me, says the Lord;
blessed are those who have not seen me, but still believe!
R. Alleluia, alleluia.


Gospel (JOHN 20:19-31)

A reading from the Holy Gospel according to John

On the evening of that first day of the week,
when the doors were locked, where the disciples were,
for fear of the Jews,
Jesus came and stood in their midst
and said to them, “Peace be with you.”
When he had said this, he showed them his hands and his side.
The disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord.
Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you.
As the Father has sent me, so I send you.”
And when he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them,
“Receive the Holy Spirit.
Whose sins you forgive are forgiven them,
and whose sins you retain are retained.”

Thomas, called Didymus, one of the Twelve,
was not with them when Jesus came.
So the other disciples said to him, “We have seen the Lord.”
But he said to them,
“Unless I see the mark of the nails in his hands
and put my finger into the nailmarks
and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.”

Now a week later his disciples were again inside
and Thomas was with them.
Jesus came, although the doors were locked,
and stood in their midst and said, “Peace be with you.”
Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here and see my hands,
and bring your hand and put it into my side,
and do not be unbelieving, but believe.”
Thomas answered and said to him, “My Lord and my God!”
Jesus said to him, “Have you come to believe because you have seen me?
Blessed are those who have not seen and have believed.”

Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of his disciples
that are not written in this book.
But these are written that you may come to believe
that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God,
and that through this belief you may have life in his name.

– The Gospel of the Lord.

Reflection: “To see is to believe!” Most of us are familiar with this quote, and this somehow true. If we want to know that something is true, then we ask for evidences, proofs, and signs. In the court, if we want to accuse someone of a certain crime, then we must present to the judge real and accurate evidences. This quote can help us avoid lies, deceits, and hypocrisies, but this quote can also cause false accusations and doubts. The Gospel (John 20:19-31) presents us today about Jesus’ Appearance to His Apostles. After Christ was arrested in the Garden of Gethsemane, his disciples, except for Saint John the Beloved, ran away and hid in the Upper Room. They were afraid of being arrested by the soldiers of Pontius Pilate. But when they hear news from their women companions like Saint Mary Magdalene that he has been raised, they refused to believe such news. Then it came to pass that Jesus appeared to them and wished peace. When they saw him, they were filled with joy. However, not all of them were present because one of them was absent, Saint Thomas, also known as Doubting Thomas. Thomas demanded signs of his wounds to believe that the Lord has risen. So it happened that one week later, he was able to see the wounds of Christ, and began to believe. At the end, Jesus said to him, “Do you believe because you see me? How happy are those who believe without seeing me” (John 20:29)! So the quote mentioned above is now rephrased as “To believe is to see!” Simply it means that it is our hearts that should feel what is true, and we have to use our right consciences. Jesus forgiving Thomas shows an example of his mission to his Apostles, to forgive sins. This tradition has been handed down to different generations, and now safeguarded by Holy Mother Church when we receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation. When we go to confession, it is the Lord who forgives our sins, and the Priests serve as his instruments. No matter how we sinned, God is always ready to welcome us back to him and to forgive our sins. Today’s Feast of the Divine Mercy celebrates the infinite mercy of God, which is like an ocean, meaning no beginning, no end, because it lasts forever. Jesus is the King of Mercy because he showed us the Father’s love and mercy for all mankind, which was also his own. At the end of the world, he will judge us not with power or hatred, but rather with mercy, based on what we done with our lives. As we journey down this Easter road, let us believe in the Risen Lord’s great mercy, and manifest his love to our brothers and sisters.

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