My Dear Sisters and Brothers.
If we are meditating on how to describe St Thomas let me offer another way to call him: Fast Learner. Why? Let’s look at what was happening to Thomas after Jesus rose from the dead. Thomas didn’t encounter Jesus on Easter Sunday morning as we could hear in the Gospel today. Why? Because Thomas wasn’t with the other disciples. A week later Thomas met the Risen Lord because this time Thomas joined the others. He was part of the community. In the next chapter St John describes the third visit of the Risen Christ which happen in Galilee. Let’s look at the list of the people who were there: Simon Peter, Thomas, Nathanael, the two sons of Zebedee and two other disciples. Thomas was there, he had learnt that if one wants to encounter the Risen Jesus the person needs to be with other disciples, the person needs to be part of the believing community. That’s why I like calling Thomas Fast Learner. He had learned that to avoid missing Jesus means that one needs to be with others disciples.
This Sunday, as we approach the end of the Easter Octave, we also turn our hearts and minds to the mystery of Divine Mercy. In the Great Jubilee of 2000 Joh Paul II canonised Sister Faustina and declared the Second Sunday of Easter as Divine Mercy. It was the request St Faustina heard from our Blessed Lord. However she wasn’t the first one to receive the message of mercy. In 1893 another nun, Sister Feliksa Kozlowska presented a similar message regarding Divine Message which she received in the city of Plock. However she abused the message by lack of humility. Eventually she led her followers astray and established a new church where she presented herself as more important than Our Blessed Mother. In spite of how things turned out God didn’t give up. Nearly 40 years later another nun received the vison of the Jesus and a request to pain an image know today as Divine Mercy Image. It happened in the same city where the fist message was misused. Sister Faustina never used the message to promote herself but with all humility committed her life to spreading this Divine Mercy message.
That story from Plock of two nuns is a reminder to all of us. God wants us to be part of his divine plan. If we are humble enough to be channels of his mercy we will be part of something huge, namely his work of salvation.
I am sure that you love the Divine Mercy Image, Divine Mercy Sunday, Divine Mercy chaplet or the Hour of Mercy (3pm), but remember that these are only means which enable us to draw Divine Mercy in order to be merciful ourselves. They are like a bucket enabling us to reach the water in a deep well. The bucket needs to be used to draw water not to be admired for itself. Our Lord said to Sister Faustina: “I am offering people a vessel with which they are to keep coming for graces to the fountain of mercy. That vessel is this image with the signature: Jesus, I trust in You."
Dear Friends! May your veneration of this image today enable you to draw from the fountain of mercy for yourself and for others, and may it also fill you with mercy to be extended onto others by your deeds of mercy.