This Sunday we celebrate the Sunday of Divine Mercy. As reported in the media publication, the “National Catholic Register”, Pope Francis encouraged everyone to remember the moments in their lives when they have experienced God’s forgiveness and the joy and peace that God’s forgiveness brings. He stated, “Brothers and sisters, let us think of all those times when we received the pardon and peace of Jesus.” He further stated, “Let us put the memory of God’s embrace before the memory of our own mistakes and failings. In this way, we will grow in joy.”
Today as we focus on the mercy of God, our Church has stated the following about this great feast, as previously noted: “During the Church’s millennium celebration in 2000, Pope John Paul II declared that the Second Sunday of Easter be known as the “Sunday of Divine Mercy”. Prior to this celebration, the Pope also wrote a profound encyclical called “Rich in Mercy”.
This encyclical explained the doctrinal and scriptural foundations for our understanding of mercy. Our Holy Father looked to a holy woman of Poland, Sr. Faustina, for inspiration. He canonized Sr. Faustina at that same Mass in 2000 at which he instituted the observance of Divine Mercy Sunday. He also clearly articulated the essential message that Jesus gave to Sr. Faustina and the message is that the graces of His mercy are greater than the stains of our sins.” Jesus’ message to Faustina reminds us that there is no limit to the Lord’s mercy for those who truly believe, for those who humbly ask for forgiveness.
The following “Prayer of Entrustment to Divine Mercy” provided by the Centre for Divine Mercy reflects the depth of the mercy that God extends to us:
O Lord our God, we place our trust in You, because You are mercy itself.
We repent of our sins and turn to You for mercy.
We trust You to provide for our every need, according to Your will.
Help us to forgive others as You forgive us.
We promise to be merciful by our deeds, words and prayers.
Though we have fears because of human weakness, we rely on Your infinite goodness and mercy.
We entrust to You the future of our planet, our Church, our nations, our families and all our needs.
With loud cries we implore Your mercy on us and on the whole world.
Look upon us, created in Your image and likeness.
Form us in the Heart of Mary by the power of the Holy Spirit into the living images of mercy.
May all come to know the depth of Your mercy and sing the praises of Your mercy forever. Amen.
This Sunday we will have a Holy Hour for Divine Mercy at 3:00 pm, here at Saint Brigid. We invite our parishioners and friends to participate in this Holy Hour and embrace the generous gift of God’s mercy in a humble spirit of thanksgiving.