Second Sunday of Easter
Acts 2:42-47 | Ps 118:2-4, 13-15, 22-24 | 1 Pt 1:3-9 | Jn 20:19-31
Today’s Gospel is meant to give us hope.
The disciples are in hiding. The darkness of evening and the locked doors indicate the degree to which their lives are filled with fear. One of the disciples, Thomas, is not with them.
Jesus joins them and utters words of encouragement. Three times Jesus says: “Peace be with you.” Jesus understands their fear as He understands our fear. He wishes to assure them that He has risen and will continue to walk with them, to walk with us. He urges all to be open to the Spirit. Breathing on them, He says, “Receive the Holy Spirit.” The disciples rejoice in Jesus’ presence.
When the disciples share this good news with Thomas, it is too much for him. He cannot believe them and articulates his need for a personal encounter with the risen Jesus. Thomas rejects their testimony and boldly demands a sign. He needs to feel and touch before he can believe.
Upon seeing Jesus, Thomas greets him with the powerful words, “My Lord and my God.”. The doubting Thomas now expresses his deep belief. This prayer is recited after the consecration in the daily liturgy.
Let us Pray: We thank you, Lord, for both the doubt and the faith of the apostle Thomas. Fill us with your peace; open us to the gifts of the Holy Spirit.
In times of personal doubt, we recall the words of Mark’s Gospel,
“I believe. Help my unbelief.” (Mk 9:24)
We pray that our belief in Jesus might be deepened and strengthened so that we may experience life in His name. May our lives be a source of hope for others and their lives a source of inspiration for us. Amen.
Sr. Mary Eileen O'Brien, OP