The responsorial psalm from 118 clearly sets out the tone for Divine Mercy Sunday, “His mercy endures forever.” It opens with repetitions of praise, while the third and fourth stanzas set the reason for the extravagant praise. One seems to be set in a desert military campaign and the latter a successful construction project.

But it is the last stanza that is most apt for today, and we hear this intoned frequently among those with a “live one day at a time” attitude. Indeed this is really all we have, more poignant that ever in this time of pandemic and the numerous restrictions. It is really down to one day at a time. All this[, time and space is what the LORD has done for us. Our response is just this, “This is day the LORD has made, let us be glad and rejoice in it.” There’s a invitation and a commitment then to take this day with thanksgiving and to be joyful about what God has given to us. This is certainly the opposite of the apocalyptic doomsayers who see God as vengeful and completely lack ing mercy for us mere and sad mortals.

One more time the Scripture presents an opportunity to change our hearts and minds in the midst of the temptation of too many Catholics who are Jansenist. I find in my experience those most taken up by the divine mercy spirituality to be the very crowd of dour and judgmental Catholics who show no mercy whatsoever.

Alan Hartway

Theological Studies at Catholic Theological Union, Chicago IL; Master of Fine Arts, Poetics, at Naropa University, Boulder CO 1996; Master of Arts, Greek Classics, University of Colorado, Boulder CO 2012; Taught at Naropa University from 1999 through 2015; Chair of Interdisciplinary Studies from 2007-2015; Member of the Missionaries of the Precious Blood, Kansas City Province since 1974; Pastor at Guardian Angel Catholic Church, Mead, CO, ministry from 2007-2020 Currently Retired

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