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DEVOTION TO THE DIVINE MERCY

 

The spread of the Message of and Devotion to the Divine Mercy goes hand in hand with St. Faustina’s name.

In 1930’s, in obedience to her Confessor and Spiritual Director, Fr. Michael Sopocko, Sr. Faustina wrote a diary of some 600 pages recording the revelations she was receiving about God’s Mercy.

On August 1, 1925, at the age of 20, she was accepted by the Congregation of the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy and she received the name Sr. Maria Faustina Kowalska of the Blessed Sacrament. She was called to the religious life during a vision of the suffering Christ.

Our Lord chose Sr. Faustina Kowalska to be His Apostle and Secretary of His Mercy, so she would share the urgent message of Divine Mercy with our troubled modern world. Her mission consisted of three main tasks:

  • Reminding the world and the Church of the truth of God’s mercy for every human being, as revealed in the Holy Scriptures.
  • Entreating Divine Mercy for the whole world, especially for poor sinners, through the practice of new forms of devotion to the Divine Mercy, which are explained in this booklet.
  • Initiating the apostolic movement of Divine Mercy, the followers of which proclaim and entreat Divine Mercy for the world and strive to practice the works of mercy following the example of Sr. Faustina.

In October 5, 1938, at the age of 33, St. Faustina died due to tuberculosis.

Even before St. Faustina’s death in 1938, the devotion to Divine Mercy as revealed in her diary had begun to spread. During the tragic war years of 1939-1945, this devotion grew in strength as people throughout Poland and Lithuania turned to the merciful Savior for comfort and hope.

  • 1941 – Spread of the Message and Devotion in the USA through the efforts of the Marians of the Immaculate Conception.
  • 1959-1978 – Devotion to the Divine Mercy was banned due Holy See received erroneous and confusing translations of Diary entries, which were not verified due to the existing political conditions.
  • 1978 – Lifting of the ban through the effort of the Archbishop of Krakow Cardinal Karol Wojtyla also known as Pope John Paul II who had initiated the informative Process for her Beatification cause in 1965.

THE ESSENCE OF THE DIVINE MERCY

Divine Mercy is the heart of the Gospel. Mercy is essential to understanding His message of love and salvation. Mercy reveals the Divine Mercy’s identity for The Lord of Divine Mercy is the Mercy and Love itself. The message of mercy is that God loves us – all of us, no matter how great our sins. He wants us to recognize that His mercy is greater than our sins, so that we will call upon Him with trust, receive His mercy, and let it flow through us to others. Thus, all will come to share His joy. It is a message we can call to mind simply by remembering ABC.

THE ABC’S OF MERCY

Ask for His Mercy. God wants us to approach Him in prayer constantly, repenting of our sins and asking Him to pour His mercy out upon the whole world.

Be Merciful to Others. God wants us to receive His mercy and let it flow through us to others. He wants us to extend love and forgiveness to others just as He does to us.

Completely Trust in Jesus. God wants us to know that the graces of His mercy are dependent upon our trust. The more we trust in Jesus, the more we will receive.

WORKS OF MERCY

SPIRITUAL WORKS OF MERCY

  1. Admonish sinners.
  2. Instruct the uninformed.
  3. Counsel the doubtful.
  4. Comfort the sorrowful.
  5. Be patient with those in error.
  6. Forgive offenses.
  7. Pray for the living and the dead.

CORPORAL WORKS OF MERCY

  1. Feed the hungry.
  2. Give drink to the thirsty.
  3. Clothe the naked.
  4. Shelter the homeless.
  5. Comfort the imprisoned.
  6. Visit the sick.
  7. Bury the dead.

ELEMENTS OF THE DEVOTION

The Image – 3 Versions of the Image

  • Right Hand – gestures of blessings of Love of God. He is merciful, gracious, slow to anger, abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness.
  • The 2 Rays:
    Red – denotes Blood, which is the life of souls.
    White – denotes Water, which makes the souls righteous. (Baptism)

Jesus said to St. Faustina, “These 2 rays issued forth from the very depths of my tender mercy when my agonized Heart was opened by a lance on the Cross. These rays shield souls from the wrath of my Father.” (Diary, 299)

  • Left Foot Forward – a movement to help, to love, to care. To indicate that the Lord is always ready to give. Thus, in Mt. 7:7-8, the Lord says “Ask and it will be given to you… for everyone who asks receives.”
  • Signature – “Jesus I trust In You” Come to Jesus with trust and graces will flow on you.

Feast Day

  • First Sunday after Easter Sunday.
  • Official Mercy or Divine Mercy Sunday, April 30, 2000 by Pope John Paul II.
  • During the Feast of Mercy, all the floodgates of God’s Mercy is opened wide for all mankind, especially for all sinners. Thus, we should go to confession beforehand in order to receive the best possible Holy Communion on the day itself.
  • Novena to the Divine Mercy and the Chaplet – Our Lord commanded St. Faustina to say the chaplet for 9 days before the Feast of Mercy to start on Good Friday. It is for the recognition of the Divine Mercy.

The Chaplet

The Divine Mercy Chaplet is prayed on the beads of the Rosary. When prayed for nine days before the Divine Mercy Sunday with a specific intension for each day, the chaplets turn into a Novena.

The Chaplet–Novena is an extraordinary powerful prayer for the dying, the conversion of hardened sinners, for averting natural calamities and as the last hope of salvation.

3’oclock the Hour of Great Mercy

At 3’oclock, our Lord Jesus was crucified and died. At this hour, we immerse ourselves completely in His Mercy, adore, and glorify Him. We invoke His omnipotence for the whole world, and particularly for poor sinners. At this moment, Mercy is opened wide for every soul.

Compiled by Sis. Maiette Zee Se Ki, Coordinator of PLDM’s Divine Mercy Apostolate from: Divine Mercy Message and Devotion Booklet, The New Evangelization For Family Devotion on Mercy, Guidelines for Divine Mercy Evangelizers, and I Thirst booklet.