Sunday of Divine Mercy
by Fr. Ivan Olmo

Jesus came and stood in their midst and said to them, “Peace be with you.” There is an inner room within our hearts.  A secret place we keep safe, guarded and protected. We keep it under lock and key. There we hide our pain, our sorrow, our failures, our grief, our sins, our secrets, our real identity. Fear keeps us from opening that door and allowing the truth to come into the light and allowing Jesus to heal what is broken, dispel what is dark, get rid of what is evil, illuminate what is false.  Fear disables us, causes us to forget, to lie, to erect walls and doors within our hearts. Fear imprisons us and robs us of our peace. We need the risen Christ to penetrate our hearts and come stand in our midst and say to us, “Peace be with you.” We need Jesus to pass through the concrete walls of our heart and unlock the bolted doors to eliminate fear and bring us his peace. We tend to think of peace as something external to us but Jesus speaks of an interior reality. He offers us something that is within us. He speaks of that  place deep within our heart where we are united, reconciled and in harmony with God. That is Jesus’ Easter gift to us. His loving invitation to us for God’s Peace to be within us and be united to him, reconciled to him, at peace with him always. When we sin, there is no peace within us.  There is no peace around us. Rather, we invite disorder, conflict and war to enter into our lives. Sin brings about darkness, despair, discouragement, discontentment, disunity.  Reconciliation on the other hand brings healing and forgiveness. It restores peace and peace restores our love, trust and confidence in God. When we confess our sins, God’s mercy grants us pardon and God’s pardon brings about inner peace. We are forgiven, united to God, there is peace. We celebrate and experience this at Mass when the priest says, “Lord Jesus Christ, who said to your Apostles: Peace I leave you, my peace I give you; look not on our sins, but on the faith of your Church, and graciously grant her peace and unity in accordance with your will.” God’s will is peace. That we go in peace and remain in peace. Allow God to dispel your fears and give you the peace of the risen Christ. Confidently receive God’s peace and fear only the loss of Heaven and the pains of Hell.

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