By Cian Molloy - 29 April, 2019
“Let us draw close to Jesus and touch his wounds in our brothers.”
The wounds of Jesus are a treasure from which mercy comes, Pope Francis said in his address for Divine Mercy Sunday.
The Pope reflected on how, eight days after his death on the cross, the Risen Lord appeared before the Apostles. Jesus invited the apostle Thomas, who doubted Jesus’ appearance, to examine his wounds for himself.
“Those wounds represent the source of peace, because they are the sign of the immense love of Jesus who defeated the forces that are hostile to man: sin, evil and death,” said the Pope.
“Touch the wounds of Jesus. The wounds of Jesus are a treasure from which mercy comes.”
The Pope said that when one visits someone who is ill or suffering, one can touch the wounds of Christ. “Let us draw close to Jesus and touch his wounds in our brothers,” he said before leading the congregation in St Peter’s Square in reciting the Regina Coeli, which is recited instead of the Angelus during the Easter Season, from Holy Saturday until Pentecost.
The words of the prayer, which is often chanted as an antiphon, are:
Queen of Heaven, rejoice. Alleluia.
For He, whom thou wast worthy to bear. Alleluia.
Has risen as He Said. Alleluia.
Pray for us to God. Alleluia.
According to tradition, Pope St Gregory the Great heard angels sing the first three lines of the antiphon while he was in a procession. It is said that the sixth-century Pontiff was inspired to add a fourth line to the chorus sung by the heavenly choir.