Divine Mercy Sunday

04-08-2018Pastor's LetterRev. John C. Granato

My Dear Friends,

Today, the Second Sunday of Easter, is also called by many, thanks to Pope St. John Paul II, Divine Mercy Sunday, many Catholics find spiritually uplifting. The Gospel reading at this Mass is the appearance of Jesus to the Apostles St. Thomas was missing. He doubted the other ten Apostles, claiming that he would not believe unless he touched his side. St. Thomas responds with the words, "My Lord and My God." Between this Gospel passage of the Doubting Thomas and the prayers of the Mass itself, it is only fitting that the Octave of Easter ends with a Mass emphasizing Mass of Divine Mercy on the Second Sunday of Easter.

St. John Paul II had written extensively on the Divine Mercy of God throughout his papacy. Pope Benedict also emphasized the Divine Mercy of God in his own papacy. And Pope Francis has continued this emphasis on mercy in his papacy. The criticism is that St. Faustina's writings are private revelation. Yes, her writings are private revelations. And we as Catholics do not have to believe that Our Lord spoke to St. Faustina. But Pope St. John Paul II did not do anything different than other popes, including himself, have done concerning private devotions. For example, our liturgy has three Masses for Our Lady's apparitions.

On February 11th, we celebrate the Memorial of Our Lady of Lourdes. On May 13th, we celebrate the Memorial of Our Lady of Fatima. And on December 12th, we celebrate the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe. I do believe that Our Blessed Mother appeared at Lourdes, Fatima and Guadalupe, as well as other places that are not commemorated in our Liturgy. But apparitions of Our Blessed Mother are also private devotions. I will place my trust in Pope St. John Paul II who through a very intense prayer life was inspired to promote St. Faustina's writings. He was privileged to beatify and canonize St. Faustina, and, again through prayer, was inspired to declare the Second Sunday of Easter as Divine Mercy Sunday. With all of the hate and rage and anger and a complete disregard for life from conception to natural death, we are in the need of Divine Mercy in our country more than ever. For the sake of His Sorrowful Passion, have mercy on us and on the whole world.