Today is a day awaited by the Faithful each year with great anticipation. Save for Easter, this has to be the most joyful Sunday to attend Mass. Divine Mercy Sunday is the one day each year filled with the promise of complete remission of the consequences of sin. Only at our Baptism did we experience such complete grace.

Yet, here we are in the throes of a confinement that attempts to deny us the beauty and peace of this forgiveness. Our hearts are breaking, and might even fill with anger unleashed at the government, bishops or perhaps even our priests who obediently follow their diocesan shepherd.

But even in the valley of this shadow of darkness, there is hope.

We need to remember that although the Sacraments were established for the Church and man, God is not bound by the Sacraments. He established them; He is outside of them. One example is the thief on the cross who was promised Heaven because of his deep Bapism of Desire. Christ exhibited that He is in charge of how and under what circumstances and means grace is given. It is always Christ who gives us the grace we need at the appointed time.

While we sadly are away from our parishes, there is merit to our suffering. Consider it a form of dry martyrdom. Wear it well for the sake of your soul. Try not to complain so that you can participate in the suffering of Christ even in this.

For all of us who are restricted from the Sacraments (whether it comes from the government or the bishops), we have to believe God is Good. His mercy & grace abounds. And so take time for a good examination of conscience and your most heartfelt Act of Contrition. Pray the Our Father, Hail Mary and Glory Be for the Pope, as this is always part of the conditions for plenary indulgences.

On this Divine Mercy Sunday, watch a real-time Mass and participate as best you can. Say a prayer of Spiritual Communion. Receive the blessing as given by the Priest Celebrant. Be like the thief on the cross with so deep a desire in your heart that Christ offers you His grace outside of the normal means.

Today is a real test of whether we truly believe what we say we believe: Jesus, I Trust in You.

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