Learning to Trust and Live God's Mercy
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Jesus entered Peter's house and healed his mother in law. She was bedridden with a fever. Mercy always responds to suffering. At the end of a long day, fatigued in his sacred humanity, "all who people sick with various diseases had brought them to him. Jesus laid his hands on each of them and cured them." Mercy always seeks the good for those in need. He casts out the demons which robbed them of their freedom. Mercy always sets the captives free. Every miracle, every deliverance, every sign of the Kingdom, is a sign of that Mercy in which we can always trust. But we need to do more. We need to become messengers of that mercy for others.
P>CHESAPEAKE, VA (Catholic Online) - The refrain of our Responsorial Psalm (Psalm 52:10,11) "I trust in the mercy of God forever" comforts me in these turbulent times. Our Gospel text (Lk. 4:38-44) reveals the Mercy of God as it flows through Jesus Christ. It still flows in this hour. Jesus is alive and walks in our midst. He mediates the Mercy of God.
Jesus entered Peter's house and healed his mother in law. She was bedridden with a fever. Mercy always responds to suffering. At the end of a long day, fatigued in his sacred humanity, "all who people sick with various diseases had brought them to him. Jesus laid his hands on each of them and cured them."
Mercy always seeks the good for those in need. He casts out the demons which robbed them of their freedom. Mercy always sets the captives free. Every miracle, every deliverance, every sign of the Kingdom, is a sign of that Mercy in which we can always trust. But we need to do more. We need to become messengers of that mercy for others.
Peter went on to become a messenger of mercy. He became so filled with the Holy Spirit that the Lord was able to continue His mission of Mercy through him. In the Acts of the Apostles we read that even the shadow of Peter caused healing. (Acts 5:15)
At the Liturgy of Canonization for Sister Mary Faustina Kowalski, Blessed John Paul II reflected on the Mercy of God revealed to the Apostle Thomas and the revelation of Divine Mercy given to the Polish nun:
"Jesus shows his hands and his side. He points, that is, to the wounds of the Passion, especially the wound in his heart, the source from which flows the great wave of mercy poured out on humanity.
"From that heart Sr Faustina Kowalska, the blessed whom from now on we will call a saint, will see two rays of light shining from that heart and illuminating the world: "The two rays", Jesus himself explained to her one day, "represent blood and water"
Divine Mercy reaches human beings through the heart of Christ crucified:
"My daughter, say that I am love and mercy personified", Jesus asked of Sr Faustina. Christ pours out this mercy on humanity though the sending of the Spirit who, in the Trinity, is the Person-Love.
"And is not mercy love's "second name" understood in its deepest and most tender aspect, in its ability to take upon itself the burden of any need and, especially, in its immense capacity for forgiveness? Jesus told Sr Faustina:
"Humanity will not find peace until it turns trustfully to divine mercy"
Sr Faustina Kowalska wrote in her Diary: "I feel tremendous pain when I see the sufferings of my neighbors. All my neighbors' sufferings reverberate in my own heart; I carry their anguish in my heart in such a way that it even physically destroys me. I would like all their sorrows to fall upon me, in order to relieve my neighbor."
Sr Faustina Kowalska learned to trust and live God's Mercy. She became a minister of mercy to others. It is our turn. This age desperately needs to hear about the Mercy of God as violence increases and the winds of war blow across the land. People need to be healed and set free form the ravages of evil. People need the Mercy of God.
Blessed John Paul II was a messenger of Mercy. The choice of the Feast of Divine Mercy, May 1, 2011 for his beatification underscored the fact. He lived the message of mercy. He also had a deep devotion to his fellow Pole Sr. Faustina Kowalska and the Divine Mercy devotion identified with her.
In August 2002, in Lagiewniki, Poland where Sr. Faustina lived and died, John Paul II entrusted the entire world "to Divine Mercy, to the unlimited trust in God the Merciful."
The Decree of his Beatification notes, "Since the beginning of his pontificate, in 1978, John Paul II often spoke in his homilies of the mercy of God. This became the theme of his second encyclical, Dives in Misericordia, in 1980.
He was aware that modern culture and its language do not have a place for mercy, treating it as something strange; they try to inscribe everything in the categories of justice and law. But this does not suffice, for it is not what the reality of God is about."
No, the reality of God is about Mercy.
It is reported from a very reliable source that Blessed John Paul II will be canonized as a Saint on the Sunday of Divine Mercy, April 27, 2014 I do not think the choice of this day for his canonization is an accident either. He is a saint for our time. A time desperately in need of God's Mercy.
May his intercession and example help us all to learn to trust and live God's Mercy. May we become men and women of mercy for others.
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