In His resurrection Christ has revealed the God of merciful love, precisely because He accepted the cross as the way to the resurrection. And it is for this reason that-when we recall the cross of Christ, His passion and death-our faith and hope are centered on the Risen One: on that Christ who “on the evening of that day, the first day of the week, … stood among them” in the upper Room, “where the disciples were, … breathed on them, and said to them: ‘Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained’ (Dives in misericordia, 8).
The risen Jesus comes to the Apostles locked in the Upper Room to grant them an extraordinary gift of mercy – the gift of forgiveness of sins. We are forgiven sinners! We are the Father’s children for whom heaven is opened! And there is no such thing as a hopeless situation in our lives! Since Jesus conquered death and rose alive from the darkness of the tomb, we hope that He will lead us out of our darkness and that His mercy has the power to resurrect even the most unrepentant sinners.
How do I experience the sacrament of reconciliation?
Is it an encounter for me with a merciful God who wants to forgive me and receive me into his Father’s heart?
“Don’t be afraid of your Saviour, sinful soul, I’m making the first step and coming to you, because I know that of yourself you are not able to come to Me. Child, don’t run away from your Father, come and talk one-to one with your God of mercy, Who wants to speak words of forgiveness to you and send down His graces upon you. O, how I treasure your soul. I have you inscribed on My hands, and you have impressed a deep wound in My Heart” (D. 1485).
“Tell souls where they are to seek comfort, in the tribunal of My mercy; that’s where the greatest miracles happen all the time. To obtain such a miracle, you don’t have to go on a pilgrimage to a faraway place, neither do you have to perform any outward ceremonies, all you have to do is come to one of My representatives in a spirit of faith and tell him of your misery, and the miracle of Divine mercy will come about in all its fullness” (D. 1448).