REFLECTION FOR DIVINE MERCY SUNDAY (YEAR C), Week beginning 24 APRIL 2022
This Sunday is now termed Divine Mercy Sunday, the Sunday after Easter Sunday. In earlier decades in our times, it was always known as Low Sunday, since it was the Sunday immediately following Easter Sunday which clearly is ”High” Sunday.
The Divine Mercy devotion emerged on 22nd February 1931, when Jesus appeared to Sr. Faustina Kowalska, a humble Polish nun. She received this commission: “Paint my image according to what you see, with the signature ‘Jesus, I trust in You’ … I want this image to be solemnly blessed on the 1st Sunday after Easter: that Sunday is to be the Feast of Mercy.” Jesus also gave Sr. Faustina a Chaplet for promoting, with the words “Say unceasingly this Chaplet that I have taught you. Anyone who says it will receive great mercy at the hour of death”. The novena Chaplet begins on Good Friday, and so concludes on Easter Saturday. It can be said on rosary beads. Its nine intentions are: 1) all sinners. 2) priests and religious. 3) all faithful souls. 4) those not knowing Jesus. 5) the non-Catholic Christians. 6) children’s souls. 7) souls who glorify His Mercy. 8) the souls in Purgatory. 9) the lukewarm souls.
The Chaplet opens with one “Our Father”, one “Hail, Mary” and the Creed. On the large beads, God the Father is addressed thus: “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 the smaller beads, are then said these words: “For the sake of His sorrowful Passion, have mercy on us and on the whole world.”)
Divine Mercy is a very “young” devotion in our 20-plus centuries of Church history, to date, as it is just ninety years known. With reference to God, mercy means “Love” – His tender loving mercy for all. Let us for ever esteem so unsurpassable a mercy!