Dear Brother and Sister in Christ,

Welcome to Catholic Mass Readings and Catholic Reflections Daily in Biblemsg.com.  We are on the April 19, 2023 in the 2nd Week of Easter. Today’s Mass readings Acts 5:17-26; John 20:19-31. Theme of the day is Light or darkness!

Readings of the Day

First Reading

Acts 5:17-26

17 Then the high priest rose up and all his companions, that is, the party of the Sadducees, and, filled with jealousy, 18 laid hands upon the apostles and put them in the public jail. 19 But during the night, the angel of the Lord opened the doors of the prison, led them out, and said, 20 “Go and take your place in the temple area, and tell the people everything about this life.” 21 When they heard this, they went to the temple early in the morning and taught. When the high priest and his companions arrived, they convened the Sanhedrin, the full senate of the Israelites, and sent to the jail to have them brought in. 22 But the court officers who went did not find them in the prison, so they came back and reported, 23 “We found the jail securely locked and the guards stationed outside the doors, but when we opened them, we found no one inside.” 24 When they heard this report, the captain of the temple guard and the chief priests were at a loss about them, as to what this would come to. 25 Then someone came in and reported to them, “The men whom you put in prison are in the temple area and are teaching the people.” 26 Then the captain and the court officers went and brought them in, but without force, because they were afraid of being stoned by the people.

Responsorial Psalm

Psalm 34:2-3, 4-5, 6-7, 8-9

Response: (7a) The Lord hears the cry of the poor.
or: Alleluia.

Gospel

Jn 3:16-21

16 For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through him. 18 Whoever believes in him will not be condemned, but whoever does not believe has already been condemned, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God. 19 And this is the verdict, that the light came into the world, but people preferred darkness to light, because their works were evil. 20 For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come toward the light, so that his works might not be exposed. 21 But whoever lives the truth comes to the light, so that his works may be clearly seen as done in God.

Light or darkness

Powerful Catholic Reflections for Today

Today’s Focus: God never wants us to perish. He is always offering us His own life. Be lightened to see the truth and receive and live His life

1. God’s love for us is endless, and He offers us the gift of faith, salvation, and eternal life through His only Son. We have a choice to make – to accept this new life in faith, to come into the light, to dispel the darkness, and to do the works of light.

2. However, some people, like the priests and Jewish authorities, choose to live within their self-made prisons of legalism, self-righteousness, hypocrisy, and stubbornness. They reject the life, truth, and light that God offers and continue to oppose the way of Jesus.

3. Despite their attempts to imprison the followers of Christ, the power of the Lord cannot be blocked. The doors of prison cannot contain those who believe in Him. The Lord opens the doors through His angel and sets them free to continue their mission of preaching and bearing witness.

4. We cannot blame God for judging and condemning us because He is merciful and sacrificed His own Son for our salvation. It is we who condemn ourselves by rejecting His life, light, and truth.

Direction to Live: Let us, therefore, be open to receiving His life in faith, allowing Him to enlighten us with His light, and walking in the way of truth with authenticity and integrity.