Think of my dazzling power and generosity.
Who could hinder Me from giving you souls if I wish to do so?
My justice is shackled by My mercy,
Which is moved to pity by the prayers of those I love. — Our Lord to Gabrielle Bossis from “He and I” (Courtesy of My Consecration)
Be thou merciful.
Spare us, Lord.
HOMILY for 2nd Sunday of Easter
St Augustine calls these past Octave days of Easter “days of pardon and mercy”. For when the risen Lord appears to his disciples gathered as a group for the first time, he immediately offers them his forgiveness, mercy, and reconciliation. And this is summed up in the phrase, “Peace be with you”. For peace is the first gift of Easter. Not peace in the sense of the absence of military conflict, as such, but something of greater cosmic significance. The peace the risen Christ speaks of is primarily the reconciliation between sinful humanity and God; it is God’s loving mercy and his forgiveness.
And this reconciliation brought about by Christ’s death and resurrection, by his obedience and loving self-offering, effects a new creation. Like the first (old) creation, God accomplishes the new through his Word and the Holy Spirit. So, on that Easter evening, “the first day of the week”, the incarnate Word speaks the new creation into being, breathing forth the Holy Spirit, and the whole universe is renewed through being reconciled to God. Indeed, God’s Spirit of Love, is, as St Augustine says, “its very self the forgiveness of sins”. So, when Christ gives the Spirit to his disciples, and thus, pours his love into their hearts, he is forgiving them their sins, giving them his peace, and hence, bringing about his new creation – a creation in which God’s own love and peace is given to humanity, and dwells in their hearts; a creation in which we are offered God’s mercy and friendship. This is what we mean by the life of grace, which is initiated in every Christian by the sacrament of baptism.