"Let no soul fear to draw near to me."
Todd Mesler Jr. composed a musical arrangement of the Divine Mercy Chaplet. It was livestreamed on Divine Mercy Sunday, April 19, 2020. You can listen to the sung prayer here: https://youtu.be/G-76rhJTxG8
The Divine Mercy Chaplet is a beautiful prayer given to St. Faustina. It can be prayed any time, but it is especially celebrated on Divine Mercy Sunday. Where did this practice come from, and why do we celebrate it on the second Sunday of Easter? The instruction came directly from Jesus himself.
In the 1930's a Polish nun, now known as St. Faustina, received private revelations from Jesus about Divine Mercy. She recorded these revelations in her diary.
"This was precisely the time when those ideologies of evil, nazism and communism, were taking shape. Sister Faustina became the herald of the one message capable of off-setting the evil of those ideologies, that fact that God is mercy—the truth of the merciful Christ." St. John Paul II
St. Faustina’s Diary records 14 occasions when Jesus requested that a Feast of Mercy (Divine Mercy Sunday) be observed, for example:
My daughter, tell the whole world about My inconceivable mercy. I desire that the Feast of Mercy be a refuge and shelter for all souls, and especially 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. … Let no soul fear to draw near to Me. … 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, no. 699)
On May 5, 2000, five days after the canonization of St. Faustina, the Vatican decreed that the Second Sunday of Easter would henceforth be known as Divine Mercy Sunday.
"And for this reason, when I was called to the See of Peter, I felt impelled to pass on those experiences of a fellow Pole that deserve a place in the treasury of the universal Church." St. John Paul II
The image was also carefully instructed by Jesus. Jesus appeared to St. Faustina in a vision, with his right hand raised in a blessing and his left touching his garment above his heart. Red and white rays emanate from his heart, symbolizing the blood and water that was poured out for our salvation and our sanctification. The Lord requested that “Jesus, I trust in You” be inscribed under his image. Jesus asked that his image be painted and venerated throughout the world: “I promise that the soul that will venerate this image will not perish” (Diary, no. 48) and “By means of this image I will grant many graces to souls” (Diary, no. 742).
Through the generosity of parishioners, the Parish received the Divine Mercy portrait and placed in the sanctuary of the church to remind us of God's loving mercy.