In 1933, God gave Sister Faustina a striking vision of His Mercy, Sister tells us:
"I saw a great light, with God the Father in the midst of it. Between this light and the earth I saw Jesus nailed to the Cross and in such a way that God, wanting to look upon the earth, had to look through Our Lord's wounds and I understood that God blessed the earth for the sake of Jesus."
Of another vision on Sept. 13, 1935, she writes:"I saw an Angel, the executor of God's wrath... about to strike the earth...I began to beg God earnestly for the world with words which I heard interiorly. As I prayed in this way, I saw the Angel's helplessness, and he could not carry out the just punishment...."
THE FEAST OF DIVINE MERCY. Sunday, April 27, 2014.
This feast of Divine Mercy, as recorded in the diary of Saint Faustina, receives from Jesus himself the biggest promises of Grace related to the Devotion of Divine Mercy. In specific Jesus states that the soul that goes to Sacramental Confession (the confession may take place some days before, untill 8 days before), and receive Holy Eucharistic Communion on that day, shall obtain the total forgiveness of all sins and punishment. Additionally, the Roman Catholic Church grants a plenary indulgence (observing the usual rules) with the recitation of some simple prayers.
During the course of Jesus' revelations to Saint Faustina on the Divine Mercy He asked on numerous occasions that a feast day be dedicated to the Divine Mercy and that this feast be celebrated on the Sunday after Easter.
The liturgical texts of that day, the 2nd Sunday of Easter, concern the institution of the Sacrament of Penance, the Tribunal of the Divine Mercy, and are thus already suited to the request of Our Lord.
This Feast, which had already been granted to the nation of Poland and been celebrated within Vatican City, was granted to the Universal Church by Pope John Paul II on the occasion of the canonization of Sr. Faustina on 30 April 2000.
In a decree dated 23 May 2000, the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments stated that "throughout the world the Second Sunday of Easter will receive the name Divine Mercy Sunday, a perennial invitation to the Christian world to face, with confidence in divine benevolence, the difficulties and trials that mankind will experience in the years to come."
These papal acts represent the highest endorsement that the Church can give to a private revelation, an act of papal infallibility proclaiming the certain sanctity of the mystic, and the granting of a universal feast, as requested by Our Lord to St. Faustina.
To this end, through his confidant Sister Faustina Kowalska, calls for the establishment of a new Feast, determining the day. Concerning the Feast of Mercy Jesus said: "Whoever approaches the Fountain of Life on this day will be granted complete forgiveness of sins and punishment." (Diary 300)
"I want the image solemnly blessed on the first Sunday after Easter, and I want it to be venerated publicly so that every soul may know about it." (Diary 341)
"This Feast emerged from the very depths of My mercy, and it is confirmed in the vast depths of my tender mercies." (Diary 420)
Jesus wants his Feast have vital importance. With this feast will get great privileges and graces for everybody ... Let us listen to the words of Jesus to Sister Faustina:
"Daughter mine, speaks to everybody of my immeasurable Mercy. I desire that the Feast of Mercy be a refuge, shelter and salvation for all souls, ans specially for poor sinners.
On that day the very depths of My tender mercy are open. I pour out a whole ocean of graces upon those souls who approach the fount of My mercy.
The soul that will go to Confession and receive Holy Communion shall obtain complete forgiveness of sins and punishment.* [our emphasis].
On that day all the divine floodgates through which grace flow are opened. Let no soul fear to draw near to Me, even though their sins were the most atrocious and the most terrible inimaginables, all will disappear in my Infinite Mercy.
"Yes, I want to grant complete pardon to the souls that will go to Confession and receive Holy Communion on the Feast of My mercy." (Diary 1109)
My mercy is so great that no mind, be it of man or of angel, will be able to fathom it throughout all eternity. Everything that exists has come forth from the very depths of My most tender mercy.
br /> Every soul in its relation to Me, will I contemplate My love and mercy throughout eternity. The Feast of Mercy emerged from My very depths of tenderness.
It is My desire that it be solemnly celebrated on the first Sunday after Easter. Mankind will not have peace until it turns to the Fount of My Mercy." (Diary 699)
The first Divine Mercy painting by Kazimierowski (1934) at the Divine Mercy Sanctuary (Vilnius)
The devotion was actively promoted by Pope John Paul II who, On 30 April 2000, canonized Faustina Kowalska, and officially designated the Sunday after Easter as the Sunday of the Divine Mercy (Dominica II Paschae seu de divina misericordia) in the General Roman Calendar. A year after establishing Divine Mercy Sunday, on April 22, 2001 Pope John Paul II re-emphasized its message in the resurrection context of Easter:
Jesus said to Sr Faustina one day: "Humanity will never find peace until it turns with trust to Divine Mercy".
Divine Mercy! This is the Easter gift that the Church receives from the risen Christ and offers to humanity.
The devotion to Divine Mercy Sunday grew rapidly after its designation by Pope John Paul II and is now widely celebrated by Catholics. The Divine Mercy image is often carried in processions on Divine Mercy Sunday, and is placed in a location in the church so that it can be venerated by those who attended the Mass.
The liturgical celebration of Divine Mercy Sunday reflects the devotional elements of Divine Mercy - the first prayer of that Mass beginning with:
"Heavenly Father and God of Mercy, We no longer look for Jesus among the dead, for He is alive and has become the Lord of Life".
This opening prayer refers to Divine Mercy as the key element in the plan of God for salvation and emphasizes the belief that it was through mercy that God gave his only son for the redemption of mankind, after the fall of Adam.
John Paul II, who died in April 2005 on the vigil of Divine Mercy Sunday, was himself beatified on Divine Mercy Sunday, May 1, 2011, by his successor, Pope Benedict XVI.
In June 2002 John Paul II granted indulgences to Catholics who recite specific prayers on that day, which were then formally decreed by the Apostolic Penitentiary. The priests are also ordered in that day to lead the prayers in honor of Divine Mercy, inform the parishioners about the Divine Mercy, and hear confessions.
This Plenary Indulgence is obtained by observing the usual dispositions that are on place for the granting of this grace through the Intercession of the Catholic Church, that is: Sacramental Confession (the confession may take place some days before, up to 8 days before), Holy Eucharistic Communion, and to pray for the intentions of the pope (an Our Father and Hail Mary is minimum requirement and one Creed), when the faithful detached from any sin, even venial, either:
- In any church or chapel take part in the prayers and devotions in honor of the Divine Mercy.
- In the presence of the Blessed Sacrament, exposed or reserved in the tabernacle, say an Our Father and Creed.
In both cases adding a devout prayer to the Merciful Lord (i.e. Merciful Jesus, I Trust in you)
Additionally, to the faithful who, for a justified reason beyond control, cannot go to a church or chapel on Sunday of the Mercy Feast, only with the recitation of one Our Father and Creed before a devout image of Jesus, adding "Merciful Jesus, I Trust in you", they will obtain the plenary indulgence that day with the condition of fulfilling the usual sacramental requirements later (confession and communion)
And even if the above is impossible to do, the Indulgence is granted if with spiritual intention they unite themselves to the ones carrying on the prescribed practices with the intention of fulfilling the requirements as soon as it is possible.
The souls (all persons) that goes to Confession and receives the Holy Communion that day, the first Sunday after Easter, will obtain the total remission of the blames and the deserved punishments.
This Feast, born from the intimate of my Mercy Jesus, is confirmed in its depths ... and He wants to be celebrated solemnly first Sunday after Easter.
It is to say in the Festivity of "Sunday In Albis".
Let us pray that all may come to church, confess their sins and receive Holy Communion and the forgiveness of sins and the punishment deserved.
As you can see the Lord's desire for the Feast includes the solemn, public veneration of the Image of Divine Mercy by the Church, as well as personal acts of veneration and mercy. The great promise for the individual soul is that a devotional act of sacramental penance and Communion will obtain for that soul the plenitude of the divine mercy on the Feast.
"Yes, the first Sunday after Easter is the Feast of Mercy, but there must also be deeds of mercy, which are to arise out of love for Me. You are to show mercy to our neighbors always and everywhere. You must not shrink from this or try to absolve yourself from it." (Diary 742)
The Cardinal of Krakow, Cardinal Macharski, whose diocese is the center of the spread of the devotion and the sponsor of the Cause of Sr. Faustina, has written that we should use Lent as preparation for the Feast and confess even before Holy Week!
So, it is clear that the confessional requirement does not have to be met on the Feast itself, although it is the better.
Many time that is an impossible burden for the clergy. The Communion requirement is easily met that day, however, since it is a day of obligation, being Sunday.
We would only need confession again, if received earlier in Lenten or Easter Season, if we were in the state of mortal sin on the Feast, we urge confess as soon as possible.
The Feast of Divine Mercy on Sunday, April 27, 2014.
For the Greater Glory of God. Amen, Amen, Amen.
From the diary of a young Polish nun, a special devotion began spreading throughout the world in the 1930s. The message is not new, but is a reminder of what the Church has always taught through scripture and tradition: that God is merciful and always forgiving and that we must to take advantage the mercy and forgiveness that God offer us. But in the Sunday Divine Mercy, the devotion of this the message takes on a powerful new focus, calling to everybody without any distinction, to get closer to confessional and receive communion, and this way gain the plenary indulgence who Jesus offer us in his deeper love to all us. So, we will have a deeper understanding that Gods love is unlimited and available to everyone — especially the greatest sinners.