Photo illustration by Phil Younk
Click on the photo for a printable PDF!

Blessed are those who have not see, but believe

Based on: Acts 2:42-47; 1 Pt 1:3-9; Jn 20:19-31

Easter night. In John’s Gospel, the apostles huddle behind locked doors. The risen Jesus appears and says, “Peace be with you.” He shows them the wounds in his hands and side. Joyfully, the apostles recognize Jesus.

Jesus says again, “Peace be with you.” He empowers the apostles to carry on his work – to forgive sins and to share his mercy, peace and love with everyone.

The apostle Thomas was absent when Jesus appeared. They tell him, “We have seen the Lord.” Thomas will not believe without seeing Jesus for himself.

A week later, although the doors are locked, Jesus again appears to the apostles, including Thomas. For a third time Jesus says, “Peace be with you.” With merciful love for Thomas, Jesus tells him, “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 adoringly responds, ”My Lord and My God!”

Jesus says, “Blessed are those who have not seen and have believed.” Strengthened by the Holy Spirit, all the apostles will faithfully spread the Good News.

The first and second readings give us a look at the early Christian community and its devoted efforts to live the faith despite conflict with the prevailing Greco-Roman culture.

On this Divine Mercy Sunday in Rome, Pope John XXIII and Pope John Paul II will be canonized as saints of the church and will be known as St. John XXIII and St. John Paul II.

St. John XXIII was a man of deep piety and prayer. Among his many contributions to the work of the church was his convening the Second Vatican Council in 1962 regarded as “the most important event in religious history since the Protestant Reformation of the 16th century.” St. John Paul II was a model disciple, a lifelong and steadfast teacher who proclaimed the Good News and who, through words and example, challenged everyone to strive for holiness by living the Christian virtues of faith, hope and love.

St. John XXIII and St. John Paul II, pray for us!