Feast of Divine Mercy
This Sunday, April 3rd, is the Feast of Divine Mercy also known as Divine Mercy Sunday! In our own modern times, Jesus gave St. Faustina Kowalska of Poland (1905-1938) the mission of making His Divine Mercy better known on earth. He told St. Faustina to have this feast instituted in the Church.
Jesus told St. Faustina that anyone who receives Holy Communion on the Feast of Divine Mercy and goes to Confession on the Feast of Divine Mercy or within the 8 days before or after it, will obtain complete forgiveness of sins and remission of all punishment associated with those sins.
Jesus told St. Faustina Kowalska:
“When you go to Confession know this, that I Myself am waiting for you in the Confessional; I am only hidden by the priest, but I myself act in the soul. Here the misery of the soul meets the God of Mercy. Tell souls that from this fount of mercy souls draw graces solely with the vessel of trust. If their trust is great there is no limit to my generosity” (Diary of St. Faustina Kowalska, VI, 6-7).
*For information on how to make a good Confession go to our post: The Great Sacrament of Confession (Reconciliation)
(Note: It is necessary to be detached from all sin including venial sin.)
1)Pray for the intentions of the Pope ( such as 1 Our Father and 1 Hail Mary).
2) Venerate the Divine Mercy of Jesus image (such as devoutly praying “Merciful Jesus, I trust in you” before the Divine Mercy of Jesus image).
3)Participate in church or chapel devotions in honor of Jesus of Divine Mercy.
In the presence of the Blessed Sacrament, exposed or reserved in the Tabernacle, pray 1 Our Father and 1 Apostle’s Creed.
The Diary of St. Faustina Kowalska
In addition, He told her to keep a diary (The Diary of St. Faustina Kowalska) in which she recorded her various experiences, visions, as well as the messages and devotions that Jesus wanted her to share with the world. As recorded in her diary, Jesus told her to have a painting made in the likeness of how He appeared to her along with the signature “Jesus I trust in you.”
The words “Jesus, I Trust in You” are at the bottom of the image. Red and blue rays of light are coming out from the Sacred Heart of Jesus as one of His pierced Hands offers a blessing and the other points to His Sacred Heart.
Jesus told her the meaning the image as follows:
“The two rays denote Blood and Water. The pale ray stands for the Water which makes souls righteous. The red ray stands for the Blood which is the life of souls. These two rays issued forth from the depths of My tender mercy when My agonized Heart was opened by a lance on the Cross. Happy is the one who will dwell in their shelter, for the just hand of God shall not lay hold of him (299). By means of this image I shall grant many graces to souls. It is to be a reminder of the demands of My mercy, because even the strongest faith is of no avail without works (742).”
God loves us with a love that is intense, infinite, perfect, and pure. It is because of His great love that He is merciful towards us, His beloved children. His Heart is a fountain of grace and mercy. Out of his love, he pours out His grace and mercy upon us especially through the Sacraments of Baptism, the Most Holy Eucharist, and Holy Confession (Reconciliation).
“Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever.” ~Psalm 107:1
“The Lord is gracious and full of compassion, slow to anger and great in mercy.” ~Psalm 145:8
“Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool.”~ Isaiah 1:18
“Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life; and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.”~Psalm 23:6
Divine Mercy and the Holy Eucharist
He pours out His grace and mercy chiefly through the Holy Eucharist (The Holy Mass, Holy Communion, Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament) as well as through the other Sacraments (i.e. Confession). It is important to note that on one occasion, St. Faustina saw the blue and red rays coming forth from the Most Blessed Sacrament. This can help us to recognize that Jesus is truly present in the Holy Eucharist.
Works of Mercy
Jesus also told St. Faustina that, like Him, we should be merciful to others and do works of mercy in order to be channels or instruments of His Mercy towards others.
Regarding works of mercy, Jesus told St. Faustina,
“I demand from you deeds of mercy which are to arise out of love for Me. You are to show mercy to your neighbors always and everywhere. You must not shrink from this or try to excuse yourself from it (Diary, 742).”
The corporal and spiritual works of mercy are as follows:
Corporal Works of Mercy
The Corporal Works of Mercy are these kind acts by which we help our neighbors with their material and physical needs.
-Feed the hungry
-Give drink to the thirsty
-Clothe the naked
-Shelter the homeless
-Visit the sick
-Visit the imprisoned
-Bury the dead
Spiritual Works of Mercy
The Spiritual Works of Mercy are acts of compassion, as listed below, by which we help our neighbors with their emotional and spiritual needs.
– Counsel the doubtful
-Instruct the ignorant
-Comfort the afflicted
-Bear wrongs patiently
-Pray for the living and the dead (Holy souls in Purgatory)
Divine Mercy and Jesus’ Second Coming
Furthermore, Jesus told St. Faustina that His revelations to her would have a special role in preparing mankind for His Second Coming. The following quotes are from the Diary of St. Faustina Kowalska.
“Secretary of My mercy, write, tell souls about this great mercy of Mine, because the awful day, the day of My justice is near” (965).
“Then I saw the Mother of God, who said to me … ‘I gave the Savior to the world; as for you, you have to speak to the world about His great mercy and prepare the world for the Second Coming of Him who will come, not as a merciful Savior, but as a just Judge. Oh how terrible is that day! Determined is the day of justice, the day of divine wrath. The angels tremble before it. Speak to souls about this great mercy while it is still the time for granting mercy.’ ” (635).
“Write down these words, my daughter. Speak to the world about My mercy; let all mankind recognize My unfathomable mercy. It is a sign for the end times; after it will come the day of justice. While there is still time let them have recourse to the fount of My mercy … ” (848).
“Write: before I come as just Judge, I first open wide the door of My mercy” (1146).
“Today I am sending you with My mercy to the people of the whole world. I do not want to punish aching mankind, but I desire to heal it, pressing it to My Merciful Heart. I use punishment when they themselves force Me to do so; My hand is reluctant to take hold of the sword of justice. Before the Day of Justice I am sending the Day of Mercy “(1588).
Let us remember to look forward to Jesus’ Second Coming with hope and trust and by living lives of holiness. During every Mass, after the Our Father prayer, we are reminded of this when the priest prays,
“Deliver us Lord from every evil and grant us peace in our days, that, by the help of your Mercy, we may always be free from sin and safe from all distress, as we await the blessed hope and the coming of Our Savior Jesus Christ.”
On this Divine Mercy Sunday, run into the arms of your loving Heavenly Father, who is waiting and yearning to embrace you! Then, go out into the world and do deeds of mercy to share His Mercy with others! Tell others of His great mercy that they too may return to God.
Divine Mercy Devotion
*For more information on St. Faustina Kowalska, Jesus’ Divine Mercy messages , the Chaplet of Divine Mercy, and the Divine Mercy image go to:
*For more information about Divine Mercy Sunday go to:
*Holy Mass at the Vatican on Divine Mercy Sunday April 3rd 2016