Faith Life

Divine Mercy Sunday

Please Join Us Sunday, April 28th from 3:00-4:00pm in the Church for Divine Mercy Sunday Prayer Service. During this service we will sing and pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet with the Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament. 

The Divine Mercy Message and Devotion

The message of The Divine Mercy is simple. It is that God loves us – all of us. And, 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.

The Divine Mercy message is one we can call to mind simply by remembering ABC:

A - 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 us and upon the whole world.

B - Be merciful. 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.

C - 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.

This message and devotion to Jesus as The Divine Mercy is based on the writings of Saint Faustina Kowalska, an uneducated Polish nun who, in obedience to her spiritual director, wrote a diary of about 600 pages recording the revelations she received about God's mercy. Even before her death in 1938, the devotion to The Divine Mercy had begun to spread.

The message and devotional practices proposed in the Diary of Saint Faustina and set forth in this web site and other publications of the Marians of the Immaculate Conception are completely in accordance with the teachings of Church and are firmly rooted in the Gospel message of our Merciful Savior. Properly understood and implemented, they will help us grow as genuine followers of Christ.

 

Spend time to learn more about the mercy of God, learn to trust in Jesus, and live your life as merciful to others, as Christ is merciful to you.

 

Events in the life and mission of St. Faustina


August 25, 1905

Helena Kowalska was born in Glogowiec, Poland; the third of ten children living off a small farm and her father's carpentry work.

August 27, 1905

Helena is baptized at St. Casimirís church in Swinice Warckie.

1912

At the age of seven, Helena hears a voice calling her to religious life.

1914

Helena receives first Holy Communion.

1917

Helena begins her primary education, which lasts only two and a half years.

1920

At age 15, Helena begins domestic work to support her large family.

1922

Helena returns home, announces a desire to enter convent; her parents oppose; she works two years to help support her family.

July 1924

Helena sees a vision of the scourged Christ who calls her to religious life.

Helena goes to Warsaw to search for a convent, and she works to support herself.

August 1925

Helena is accepted by the Congregation of the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy; one month later she wants to leave for a stricter order.

April 30, 1926

Helena receives habit and her religious name Maria Faustina.

April 3, 1927

Sr. Faustina experiences spiritual dark night during novitiate.

April 16, 1928

On Good Friday, she is engulfed by the flame of Divine Love.

April 30, 1928

Sr. Faustina makes her first profession of temporary vows.

December 1928

Newly elected Mother General Michaela Moraczewska is source of help and comfort to Sr. Faustina during her religious life.

October 1928-30

Easily adaptable, Sr. Faustina is sent to work at various houses.

February 22, 1931

Sr. Faustina sees a vision of Jesus who tells her to paint His image.

May 1, 1933

Sr. Faustina takes her perpetual vows.

May 25, 1933

Sr. Faustina goes to Vilnius where she receives many mystical experiences and is assisted by Fr. Michael Sopocko, a wise spiritual director.

January 2, 1934

Sr. Faustina visits the artist Kazimirowski, who is to paint the image.

March 29, 1934

Sr. Faustina offers herself for sinners, especially those who lack trust.

June 1934

The painting of Divine Mercy is completed, but Sr. Faustina does not like it.

July 1934

Beginning of Sr. Faustina's illness; she begins writing the Diary under obedience.

April 28, 1935

(Feast of Mercy) Divine Mercy image is publicly venerated in Vilnius for the conclusion of the Jubilee Year of Redemption: January 8, 1936. Sr. Faustina informs the Bishop that Jesus requests the founding of an order.

May 11, 1936

Sr. Faustina goes to Krakow; guided by Fr. Andrasz SJ; her health deteriorates.

September 1937

Holy cards with the Divine Mercy image printed for first time.

September 1938

Sr. Faustina prepares herself for death, and she asks pardon of the Congregation.

October 5, 1938

Sr. Faustina makes final confession, and dies late in the evening.

October 7, 1938

Funeral of Sr. Faustina, burial at the convent cemetery.

1940-1941

Divine Mercy message spreads first among the victims of WWII.

April 1941

Fr. Joseph Jarzebowski, MIC, brings the Divine Mercy message to the USA and the Congregation of Marians of the Immaculate Conception begins to spread the message in Polish.

1942-1959

The Divine Mercy message spreads worldwide through the efforts of the Marians, who publish images and literature in many languages.

March 6, 1959

Holy Office issues a notification banning Divine Mercy devotion.

October 21, 1965

Informative Process of Sr. Faustina's life and virtues is opened by Cardinal Karol Wojtyla, Archbishop of Krakow, encouraged by Cardinal Ottaviani, the Prefect of the Holy Office.

September 1967

Informative Process closes; Cardinal Wojtyla sends acts to Rome, January 31, 1968. The process of Beatification of Sr. Faustina is inaugurated.

April 15, 1978

Prefect of Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith declares the Notification ban no longer binding.

October 16, 1978

Cardinal Karol Wojtyla becomes Pope John Paul II.

July 12, 1979

Marians receive an authoritative explanation of the Notification issued by the Prefect for the Doctrine of Faith stating that no impediments exist in the spread of the message and devotion to the Divine Mercy in the forms proposed by Sr. Faustina.

May 1980

Marians publish critical edition of Sr. Faustina's Diary in Polish.

November 30, 1980

Pope John Paul II issues encyclical on the Divine Mercy.

November 22, 1981

Pope John Paul II visits the Shrine of Merciful Love in Collevalenza near Todi, Italy, stating that, "Right from the beginning of my ministry in St. Peter's See in Rome, I considered this message (of Divine Mercy) my special task."

1986

Marians publish critical edition of Sr. Faustina's Diary in English.

April 10, 1991

Pope John Paul II links the encyclical's message to Sr. Faustina.

March 7, 1992

Decree of Heroic Virtues of Sr. Faustina is promulgated.

December 1992

Miracle through intercession of Sr. Faustina is accepted.

April 18, 1993

Sr. Faustina beatified in Rome on Second Sunday of Easter.

January 2000

Second miracle through Bl. Faustina intercession is accepted.

April 30, 2000

Bl. Faustina is canonized in Rome on Divine Mercy Sunday and Divine Mercy Sunday is proclaimed.

May 5, 2000

Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments issues a Decree proclaiming the Second Sunday of Easter also as Divine Mercy Sunday.

December 2000

The Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments listed the Devotion to the Divine Mercy in its Directory on Popular Piety and the Liturgy: Principles and Guidelines.

April 22, 2001

Divine Mercy Sunday is celebrated officially for the first time by the universal Church.

May 13, 2001

Congregation For The Clergy issues a document: "Priest of God, you embody the Mystery of Mercy."

August 18, 2002

John Paul II consecrates the whole world to the Divine Mercy from The Divine Mercy Sanctuary in Krakow-Lagiewniki, the site of St. Faustina's tomb.

August 21, 2002

Decree of the Apostolic Penitentiary issued on Indulgences attached to devotions in honor of Divine Mercy.

 

How To Pray the Chaplet of Divine Mercy

 
Optional Opening Prayers:

You expired, Jesus, but the source of life gushed forth for souls,
and the ocean of mercy opened up for the whole world.
O Fount of Life, unfathomable Divine Mercy,
envelop the whole world and empty Yourself out upon us.

(Repeat 3 times) O Blood and Water, which gushed forth from the Heart of Jesus as a fountain of Mercy for us, I trust in You!

Our Father, Hail Mary and the Apostle's Creed

For each of the five decades (On each “Our Father” bead of the rosary, pray)

Eternal Father, I offer you the Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity of Your Dearly Beloved Son, Our Lord, Jesus Christ, in atonement for our sins and those of the whole world.

(On each of the 10 “Hail Mary” beads, pray)
For the sake of His sorrowful Passion, have mercy on us and on the whole world.

Concluding prayer (Repeat 3 times)
Holy God, Holy Mighty One, Holy Immortal One, have mercy on us and on the whole world.

Optional Closing Prayer
Eternal God, in whom mercy is endless and the treasury of compassion inexhaustible, look kindly upon us and increase Your mercy in us, that in difficult moments we might not despair nor become despondent, but with great confidence submit ourselves to Your holy will, which is Love and Mercy itself.

The Solemnity of Mary Mother of God - January 1st

The Story of Mary, Mother of God

Mary’s divine motherhood broadens the Christmas spotlight. Mary has an important role to play in the Incarnation of the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity. She consents to God’s invitation conveyed by the angel (Luke 1:26-38). Elizabeth proclaims: “Most blessed are you among women and blessed is the fruit of your womb. And how does this happen to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me?” (Luke 1:42-43, emphasis added). Mary’s role as mother of God places her in a unique position in God’s redemptive plan.

The precise title “Mother of God” goes back at least to the third or fourth century. In the Greek form Theotokos—God-bearerit became the touchstone of the Church’s teaching about the Incarnation. The Council of Ephesus in 431 insisted that the holy Fathers were right in calling the holy virgin Theotokos. At the end of this particular session, crowds of people marched through the street shouting: “Praised be the Theotokos!” The tradition reaches to our own day. In its chapter on Mary’s role in the Church, Vatican II’s Dogmatic Constitution on the Church calls Mary “Mother of God” 12 times.

The Solemnity of Mary Mother of God falls exactly one week after Christmas, the end of the octave  of Christmas. It is fitting to honor Mary as Mother of Jesus, following the birth of Christ. When Catholics celebrate the Solemnity of Mary Mother of God we are not only honoring Mary, who was chosen among all women throughout history to bear God incarnate, but we are also honoring our Lord, who is fully God and fully human. 

Calling Mary "mother of God" is the highest honor we can give Mary. Just as Christmas honors Jesus as the "Prince of Peace," the Solemnity of Mary Mother of God honors Mary as the "Queen of Peace."  On this holy feast day, let us take a moment as we start our new year to honor our Blessed Mother, who in her “yes” to God brought our Savior into the world to redeem us. 


Join us for Mass to Honor Mary, Mother of God:

New Year's Eve  - Vigil  5:00pm
New Year's Day - 7:30am and 9:30am

The Feast of the Epiphany - January 6th

About Epiphany

At Epiphany, the Church celebrates the manifestation of the Son of God as the Savior and Messiah. Also called Three Kings Day, at Epiphany we recall the visit of the Magi to the newborn Jesus: “And behold, the star that they had seen at its rising preceded them, until it came and stopped over the place where the child was. They were overjoyed at seeing the star, and on entering the house they saw the child with Mary his mother. They prostrated themselves and did him homage. Then they opened their treasures and offered him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.” (Matthew 2:9–12)

The epiphany, or showing, of Jesus teaches us that Jesus’ coming into the world was important to the whole world and that the Good News of Jesus Christ is meant for everyone!

Symbols

Various paintings, artworks and sketches show the three wise men and Jesus. Some paintings artworks show the three wise men on the way to Bethlehem or adoring baby Jesus. The kings are important because their visit illustrates that Jesus was the king of all kings.

The star that guides the wise men to Christ also symbolizes Epiphany, as well as the three gifts they gave to Jesus:

  • Gold (fit for a king).
  • Frankincense (used to worship at a temple).
  • Myrrh (used for embalming).

 

Blessing of the Home and Household on Epiphany

When all have gathered, a suitable song may be sung. The leader makes the sign of the cross, and all reply, “Amen.”

The leader greets those present in the following words:

Let us praise God, who fills our hearts and homes with peace.
Blessed be God forever.
R/. Blessed be God forever.

In the following or similar words, the leader prepares those present for the blessing:

The Word became flesh and made his dwelling place among us. It is Christ who enlightens our hearts and homes with his love. May all who enter this home find Christ’s light and love.

One of those present or the leader reads a text of sacred Scripture, for example, Luke 19:1-9:

Listen to the words of the holy Gospel according to Luke:


Jesus came to Jericho and intended to pass through the town. Now a man there named Zacchaeus, who was a chief tax collector and also a wealthy man, was seeking to see who Jesus was; but he could not see him because of the crowd, for he was short in stature. So he ran ahead and climbed a sycamore tree in order to see Jesus, who was about to pass that way.> When he reached the place, Jesus looked up and said to him, “Zacchaeus, come down quickly, for today I must stay at your house.” And he came down quickly and received him with joy. When they all saw this, they began to grumble, saying, “He has gone to stay at the house of a sinner.” But Zacchaeus stood there and said to the Lord, “Behold, half of my possessions, Lord, I shall give to the poor, and if I have extorted anything from anyone I shall repay it four times over.” And Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house because this man too is a descendant of Abraham.”

The intercessions are then said:

Leader: The Son of God made his home among us. With thanks and praise let us call upon him.
R/. Stay with us, Lord.
Leader:  Lord Jesus Christ, with Mary and Joseph you formed the Holy Family: remain in our home, that we may know you as our guest and honor you as our Head.
We pray:
R/. Stay with us, Lord.
Leader:  Lord Jesus Christ, you had no place to lay your head, but in the spirit of poverty accepted the hospitality of your friends: grant that through our help the homeless may obtain proper
housing.
We pray:
R/. Stay with us, Lord.
Leader:Lord Jesus Christ, the three kings presented their gifts to you in praise and adoration: grant that those living in this house may use their talents and abilities to your greater glory.
We pray:
R/. Stay with us, Lord.

After the intercessions the leader invites all present to say the Lord’s Prayer.
The leader says the prayer of blessing with hands joined:

Lord God of heaven and earth,
you revealed your only-begotten Son to every nation
by the guidance of a star.
Bless this house
and all who inhabit it.
Fill them (us) with the light of Christ,
that their (our) concern for others may reflect your love.
We ask this through Christ our Lord.
R/. Amen.

The leader concludes the rite by signing himself or herself with the sign of the cross and saying:

May Christ Jesus dwell with us,
keep us from all harm,
and make us one in mind and heart,
now and forever.
R/. Amen.

It is preferable to end the celebration with a suitable song, for example, “O Come, All Ye Faithful” or “We Three Kings.”

—From Catholic Household Blessings & Prayers

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops is pleased to share a downloadable lectio divina resource for the Feast of the Epiphany of the Lord.

 

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