…My dear parishioners and friends of our parish community: Jesus Christ is Risen! Alleluia! Alleluia! He is truly Risen! Alleluia! Alleluia!
Today is the Octave of Easter! The Second Sunday of Easter! Divine Mercy Sunday! Traditionally also called, “Dominica In Albis” or “Sunday in White”, the final day the newly Baptized in the early Church wore their long white robes.
In the Great Jubilee Year of 2000 AD, the Servant of God, Pope John Paul II, forever added the title, “Divine Mercy Sunday”, pointing the way to the inscrutable mystery of God, the mystery of Divine Mercy. The new designation for the Octave of Easter and the Canonization of Saint Maria Faustina Kowalska, Apostle and Secretary of Divine Mercy, the first Saint of this new millennium, fittingly directs all hearts of humanity to God’s boundless Mercy and Love manifested in all its richness by Jesus Christ our Risen Lord.
In proclaiming the Second Sunday of Easter as Divine Mercy Sunday, Pope John Paul II acceded to the wishes of the Christian faithful in all parts of the world to praise the Divine Mercy in divine worship, particularly in the celebration of the Paschal Mystery, in which God’s loving kindness especially shines forth and who wish to share in its inexhaustible riches and graces.
How do we celebrate Divine Mercy Sunday? First, through the graces available through Confession and Holy Communion on Divine Mercy Sunday, as promised by Jesus directly to St. Faustina. In addition, Pope John Paul II granted a plenary indulgence to all those who take part in prayers and devotions in honor of Divine Mercy on this Sunday after Easter.
Secondly, the Veneration of the Sacred Image of Divine Mercy – our Lord ordered St. Faustina to have painted a special image of mercy, which you can see hanging in our Sanctuary. “I want this image to be solemnly blessed on the First Sunday after Easter,” (Words of Jesus, Diary 49).
Thirdly, by actions of mercy, i.e. living out the Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy. Also, keeping the three o’ clock hour of prayer and saying daily the Divine Mercy Chaplet. To sum up, simply saying every day of your life the brief invocation, Jesus I trust in you!
On Divine Mercy Sunday, we welcome Msgr. Thomas R. Bride, P.A., K.C.H.S., Vicar General of the Diocese of Norwich, who will administer the Sacrament of Confirmation. We welcome Msgr. Bride to Middletown, to St. John Parish where his family has worshiped since 1900 and where he offered his first Mass as priest! We congratulate members of our Confirmation Class 2009 and wish them all the abundance of the gifts and fruits of the Holy Spirit in their lives today. This is the Day the Lord has made! Let us rejoice and be glad in it! Alleluia! Alleluia!
Blessings on your Easter Days!
Divine Mercy Sunday graces to all!
Jezu, Ufam Tobie! Jesus, I trust in you!