“Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy”(Mt 5:7)
As a child of God living in the 21st Century, I am a witness of difference: in race, skin color, sex, gender, politics, and religion. All these differences unfortunately have led to conflict, have led many ultimately to question whether a merciful God exists, and if He does, how can He be merciful and just at the same time. Some may ask, “Why should I show mercy to someone who has caused great pain? What is God doing to prevent this pain? Where is the justice in this world?”
These differences lead many to these questions and have led many away from the Church. They may even bring about ideas that the young church is dying. But I think all my fellow pilgrims from World Youth Day 2016 in Krakow can assure you the young church is very much alive! Mercy teaches you to be more united with your brothers and sisters in the world. Trusting in God’s mercy helps you be more patient and understanding of those around you, making the world a much better place.
I walked amongst the millions of “differences” this past summer as I walked through the streets of Krakow. While there were many differences present, we all stood together as children of God, united as brothers and sisters. We all came together peacefully in celebration of God’s love, hearing more about God’s promise of incredible mercy to St. Faustina. Through this pilgrimage, we learned that mercy and justice go hand in hand, as they both result from God’s love. God voluntarily died on the cross as an act of justice for our sins, but also showed us the greatest mercy by forgiving us and opening the gates of Heaven.
So I challenge you, my brothers and sisters of the Diocese of Bridgeport. Through practice of the sacrament of mercy, may we all teach others to stand with us, together, in good faith and say, “Jesus, I trust in you.” May we all choose to be merciful, and “forgive those who have trespassed against us,” for only then will we too receive mercy.
By: Angela Finn