Confession: there you meet the Lord's mercy
Divine Mercy feast in the Cathedral church
The 2nd sunday of Easter is Mercy-Sunday, which is celebrated in a special way in the shrine of Heiloo (where bishop Jozef Punt celebrated the dutch Divine Mercy feast) and in the cathedral church in Haarlem where the English spoken Divine Mercy Feast was celebrated. A beautiful day about God's mercy that we encounter in a special way in the sacrament of penance, confession. Here is why you should not hesitate to go to confession.
Many people took their Divine Mercy images to the celebration. After an hour of adoration with prayers and benediction, there was a solemn intrance procession with all the Divine Mercy images. In the homily we reflected about the Lord's mercy in the sacrament of reconciliation.
It was a beautiful occasion with many people going to confession, during the adoration and after Mass.
And after Mass, of course, lots of pictures were taken...
Meet the risen Lord and His mercy!
DIVINE MERCY SUNDAY
Dear brothers and sisters,
We are poor people,
so many times we are running up
against the limits
of our human capabilities.
We want to be good, honest, merciful, faithful
we want to sow peace,
but time and again,
we are confronted with our
Our inspiration and our failures
Our best and divine inspiration is
to take up our daily cross,
to serve the Lord and our fellow man,
to do good,
but then something happens
that tempts us to sin,
something that makes us angry,
makes us feel wronged and mentally injured.
We get angry, depressed, jealous,
we are getting all kinds of feelings and emotions
and foster divisions,
that do not help us to live
the best of ourselves.
And how many times
these little missteps
make us feel ourselves
unworthy of God’s love
and Jesus’s acceptance.
But, please, do not forget:
He loves you infinetly!
And how many times we were maybe hesitant
to approach the merciful love of Jesus
in the sacrament of confession,
because we felt humbled
by our failures and shortcomings.
Often we have to get over
a kind of mental bump,
to kneel down before a priest
an ask the Lord’s forgiveness.
With the love of Jesus
But the Lord is not like a severe schoolmaster
or a demanding parent or trainer,
He is full of love and understanding
and the priest who receives you
in holy confession
is called to radiate
that same welcoming attitude,
full of love for sinners,
because the priest is there
to represent Jesus,
he is called to be there with the love of Jesus!
He too, is a sinner!
And that priest is called
to be full of understanding
for yet another reason:
because he knows
he himself is a sinner.
The priest, your confessor,
has to kneel down himself as well
in the confessional of an other priest
to ask and receive forgiveness
for his own sins.
So, don’t be afraid,
It is that what also Jesus said
so many times
to His disciples:
Do not be afraid!
An to sister saint Faustina He said
in the vision she received:
“When you approach the Confessional, know this,
that I myself am waiting there for you”.
And He said: “I pour out a whole ocean of graces
upon those souls who approach the fount
of My mercy.”
Meeting the risen Lord
In fact, each time you go to confession,
each time you approach the sacrament of reconciliation,
while you receive absolution,
you meet the risen Lord,
who gave the power to forgive sins
to his apostles
as we heard in today’s gospel.
And you will experience
what the disciples experienced
when they met Jesus after His resurrection:
the presence of the risen Lord
dispelled fear and brought peace.
Saint Titus Brandsma
Next month it will be one year
that pope Francis canonized
the Dutch Carmelite priest Titus Brandsma.
In the second world war
after courageous resistance
to the German Nazi regime,
he was deported to a concentration camp,
first in Amersfoort, later in Dachau, Germany,
where he died.
Those who survived these camps
of the impression Father Titus made.
He was kind to others, helping them,
no fear he had, it seemed;
he was in peace and with an inner joy
that radiated outwards
an gave hope and peace to others.
Why was that? Ho was that possible?
It was possible because Father Titus lived
in the presence of the risen Lord,
because he had approached
the fount of God’s mercy,
he was overwhelmed by this Divine mercy
and His mercy prevailed,
it was stronger than the hardships
of his situation,
stronger even than the criminal acts of the Nazi regime.
Touch of love
Dear brothers and sister,
please don’t forget the moments and days
that you felt the touch of God’s merciful love,
those beautiful occasions
that have you been overwhelmed with joy
and received the grace
of God’s mercy.
Sometimes life is really difficult,
but there were moments, days
that He showed you His mercy.
No, He does not leave you alone
and please, have confidence
that you can approach Him without fear,
that He is always there to forgive you
and give you strength
when you go to the fount of His mercy.