April 8 — Second Sunday of Easter (Sunday of Divine Mercy)
ACTS 4: 32-35; PS 118: 2-4, 13-15, 22-24; 1 JN 5: 1-5: JN 20: 19-31
On this Second Sunday of Easter, Divine Mercy Sunday, what we hear in the Word of the Lord enforces what we need to believe. It has a lot to do with the idea of stewardship. Some of what we hear is often misinterpreted.
The First Reading from the Acts of the Apostles points out about the early Christian community: “The community of believers was of one heart and mind, and no one claimed that any of his or her possessions was his own, but they had everything in common.” This is a sign of unity, the kind of unity we as a faith community are striving to achieve. The bottom line is that those in the community regarded people more important than things. Is that not what Christ expects of us?
That community recognized that God was the granter and the owner of absolutely everything. Because the Lord had touched them so deeply, they found it easier to share. The misinterpretation often comes because some say, “That sounds like communism or socialism.” Communism maintains that “What is yours is mine; if you do not share it, I will take it.” The early Christian community said, “What is mine is yours; I will share it.” It is a bit of a different viewpoint.
In fact it is stewardship. We must remember that these people knew and were following the Apostles, who received this gift from the Lord: “As the Father has sent me, so I send you. Receive the Holy Spirit. Whose sins you forgive are forgiven them.” And that is mercy.