Eight days later, Jesus came.
After the joys and exuberance of Easter Sunday and Easter Week, we settle down into the longest Season in the Church’s Year – Eastertide. This period of fifty days is a time of sustained gladness, which comes through reading and reflecting on the Scriptures which describe the risen life of Jesus – not just his appearances to the disciples after the Resurrection, but the teachings from his ministry which reveal the risen life he now possesses. We also spend time hearing about how the Resurrection made a difference: how the timid and frightened disciples were able to leave Jerusalem and proclaim a message of life over death to the whole world, as we read through the book of the Acts of the Apostles. We also linger over the first letter of Saint John, which ties together so many of the themes of Easter: life, faith, baptism, the Spirit – all brought together in the person of the Lord Jesus, risen from the dead. On this second Sunday, we continue to track through real time, by hearing what happened in Jerusalem on the Sunday after the Resurrection with the Lord appearing to Thomas – strengthening his faith, and strengthening ours as we listen to the account.
First Reading: Acts 4: 32-35
Second Reading: 1John 5: 1-6
Gospel Reading: John 20:19-31
Let the sons of Israel say: “His love has no end.” Let the sons of Aaron say: “His love has no end.” Let those who fear the Lord say: “His love has no end.” The Lord’s right hand has triumphed; his right hand raised me up. I shall not die, I shall live and recount his deeds. I was punished, I was punished by the Lord, but not doomed to die. The stone which the builders rejected has become the corner stone. This is the work of the Lord a marvel in our eyes. This day was made by the Lord; we rejoice and are glad.