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POPE CONSECRATES BASILICA OF DIVINE MERCY
BBC ^ | August 17, 2002

Posted on 08/17/2002 6:31:45 AM PDT by NYer

Tens of thousands of people have greeted the Pope on the first full day of what is being seen as his farewell visit to his native Poland.

Large crowds clapped and cheered as John Paul II arrived to consecrate the Basilica of Divine Mercy near Krakow, a shrine to Poland's first woman saint.

The ultra-modern shrine commemorates a Polish nun canonised by the Pope two years ago.

Specially commissioned stamps

New stamps commemorate the visit

Later on Saturday, the pontiff is due to receive President Aleksander Kwasniewski and Prime Minister Leszek Miller at his official residence.

The Pope is on his ninth visit to his homeland in 24 years. There has been intense speculation about the pontiff's health, but the Vatican says he is not planning to step down.

However, this visit represents a large scaling-down of the gruelling schedule he followed during his last trip three years ago, when he visited 20 cities. This time, his trip is limited to his home town of Krakow.

Visions

Twelve cardinals and more than 150 bishops attended Saturday's consecration, the first major religious ceremony of the Pope's visit.

Fans of the Pope

Crowds chanted: "Poland loves you!"

The shrine, built in the shape of a boat at a cost of several million dollars, commemorates Saint Faustina - a nun who died just before World War II and claimed to have had visions of Jesus Christ.

The Vatican was at first suspicious of the story and banned publication of the nun's diary.

But when Karol Wojtyla became Pope, he reversed the ban and pushed for Sister Faustina's rapid beatification and canonisation.

Catholic decline

Greeted by President Kwasniewski on Friday, the Pope said he arrived "with the same feeling of joy that I experience every time I come home... Krakow is so dear to my heart".

Nuns prepare the Pope's stage for his Sunday Mass

Millions of worshippers are expected on Sunday

He said he was well aware of the social and economic difficulties that still dog Poland as it prepares for entry into the European Union.

The BBC's David Willey, in Krakow, says that Polish Catholicism has clearly become more diluted under democratic government and a free market economy, and official church statistics reveal that only 10% of Polish believers fully identify with church teaching.

However, the Pope remains immensely popular in Poland. About 80% of the population are practising Roman Catholics, while many non-Catholics also have pictures of him on their walls.

The Holy Father's first visit to Poland in 1979, a year after becoming Pope, was widely credited with galvanising opposition to the country's communist government.

During his stay, the largest crowd is expected on Sunday, when the Pope is to say an open-air mass in Blonie, near the centre of Krakow.

More than two million Poles are expected to celebrate the Mass, at which the Pope will beatify four people, including former Warsaw archbishop Zygmunt Felinski, who died in 1895.

Afterwards, the Pope will visit the graves of his parents.


TOPICS: General Discusssion
KEYWORDS: benny; columbia; divinemercy; faustina; knights; knightsofcolumbus; poland; pope; stfaustina

1 posted on 08/17/2002 6:31:45 AM PDT by NYer
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To: Siobhan; american colleen; sinkspur; Aliska; Lady In Blue; Salvation; Polycarp; narses; ...

As is typical with media reporting on the pope, the members of the "Papal Death Watch Society" continue to remind us of the Holy Father's "frail condition". Raymond Arroyo noted last night that some of them, who began predicting the pope's imminent death, more than 10 years ago, are now dead themselves.

I watched the pope descend the stairs unaided from his Alitalia jet yesterday. Today's mass showed an envigorated pope, waving to the throngs who sang and cheered back.

Viva Il Papa!! Cent Anni!!!

2 posted on 08/17/2002 6:40:00 AM PDT by NYer
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To: NYer

The Image of the Divine Mercy

The earliest element of the Devotion to the Divine Mercy revealed to St. Faustina was the Image. On February 22nd, 1931 Jesus appeared to her with rays radiating from His heart and said,

Paint an image according to the pattern you see, with the signature: Jesus I trust in You.  I desire that this image be venerated, first in your chapel, and throughout the world. (Diary 47)

I promise that the soul that will venerate this image will not perish. I also promise victory over its enemies already here on earth, especially at the hour of death. I myself will defend it as My own glory. (Diary 48)

I am offering people a vessel with which they are to keep coming for graces to the fountain of mercy. That vessel is this image with the signature" :Jesus, I trust in You." (Diary 327)

The two rays denote Blood and Water. the pale ray stands for the Water which makes souls righteous. The red ray stands for the Blood which is the life of souls. These two rays issued forth from the very depths of My tender mercy when My agonized heart was opened by a lance on the Cross. These rays shield souls from the wrath of My Father. Happy is the one who dwell in their shelter, for the just hand of god shall not lay hold of him. (Diary 299)

Not in the beauty of the color, nor of the brush, lies the greatness of this image, but in My grace. (Diary 313)

By means of this image I shall grant many graces to souls. It is to be a reminder of the demands of My mercy, because even the strongest faith is of no avail without works. (Diary 742)

In these texts the Church's doctrine on images, justification and grace are explained. First, by itself an image is merely a painting, no matter how beautiful and expressive. Yet, it can point us the mysteries of the faith and dispose us to grasp and receive what it represents, in this case the Divine Mercy. It is thus a vessel, not the source, a reminder, not the reality. The reality is the merciful fountain of grace flowing from the pierced Heart of Christ on the Cross, and flowing out visibly to represent the visible, that is the sacramental, signs of grace, Baptism and Eucharist, standing for all the sacraments of the Church. Thus, St. John in his first letter insists on the presence of the invisible with the visible, the Spirit with the water and the Blood. 

The image also reminds us that salvation is not just by faith, but by works of charity also. It takes faith to see and believe in what the Image signifies, Divine Mercy poured out from Christ upon the Cross, but it takes mercy, love going beyond the strict requirements of justice, in order to draw down mercy on oneself. "Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us" (Mt 6:12) and  "the measure with which you measure will be measured out to you" (Mt 7:2) The Image of the pierced side of Christ pouring out blood and water reminds us that the Cross, love in action, is the price of mercy. "As I have loved you so also should you love one another."  (Jn 13:34)  

3 posted on 08/17/2002 6:45:49 AM PDT by NYer
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To: NYer
Divine Mercy bump!
4 posted on 08/17/2002 7:30:28 AM PDT by Salvation
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To: NYer
VIVA IL PAPA! JESU, UFAM TOBIE!
5 posted on 08/17/2002 7:44:29 AM PDT by Dajjal
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To: NYer
Thanks,

Don't ya just love him? I was watching the liberal news and they showed him come to the window when everyone was outside singing to him. That little smile came across his face.

Got me all teary eyed.

6 posted on 08/17/2002 8:36:54 AM PDT by Cap'n Crunch
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To: NYer
Just caught the last part of the Mass.
7 posted on 08/17/2002 11:47:01 AM PDT by Salvation
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To: NYer; Salvation; Siobhan; JMJ333
I got done watching the encore broadcast of the concecration Mass on EWTN. I caught the Liturgy of the Word and the pope's homily earlier in the wee hours, but I was starting to fall asleep, so I missed the rest. I was just about to post a thread on the concecration of the Divine Mercy Shrine in Krakow, but NYer beat me to it! Oh well, but I think I'll "add a little color" to this thread by posting some pictures.


Catholic faithful cheer as Pope John Paul II arrives at the God's Mercy Basilica in Krakow, southern Poland, Saturday, Aug.17, 2002. The pope will consecrate the God's Mercy basilica in Krakow's Lagiewniki district, a popular sanctuary dedicated to St. Faustina, a mystic nun. Up to four million pilgrims are expected to greet the holy father during his Friday, Aug.16 to Monday, Aug.19 homecoming. (AP Photo/Jens Meyer)
Pope John Paul II drives through Krakow, southern Poland, Saturday, Aug.17, 2002. Tens of thousands of adoring Poles gave the ailing Pope John Paul II a joyous welcome home Saturday, lining a seven-mile route and shouting ``Long live the pope!'' as he arrived to consecrate a new basilica. (AP Photo/Pier Paolo Cito)

Pope John Paul II drives through Krakow, southern Poland, Saturday, Aug.17, 2002. Up to four million pilgrims are expected to greet the holy father during his four-day homecoming visit. More than 250,000 Poles poured into the streets Friday night to greet the pope on the ninth visit to his homeland. (AP Photo/Pier Paolo Cito)

Pope John Paul II arrives at the God's Mercy Basilica in Krakow, southern Poland, Saturday, Aug.17, 2002. The pope will consecrate the God's Mercy basilica in Krakow's Lagiewniki district, a popular sanctuary dedicated to St. Faustine, a mystic nun. Up to four million pilgrims are expected to greet the holy father during his return to Poland this weekend. (AP Photo/Jens Meyer)

Nuns cheers as they welcome Pope John Paul II upon his arrival at the God's Mercy Basilica in Krakow, southern Poland, Saturday, Aug.17, 2002. The pope will consecrate the God's Mercy basilica in Krakow's Lagiewniki district, a popular sanctuary dedicated to St. Faustina, a mystic nun. Up to four million pilgrims are expected to greet the holy father during his Friday, Aug.16 to Monday, Aug.19 homecoming. (AP Photo/Jockel Finck)

A crowd of several thousand Catholics wait to welcome Pope John Paul II upon his arrival at the God's Mercy Basilica in Krakow, southern Poland, Saturday, Aug.17, 2002. The pope will consecrate the God's Mercy basilica in Krakow's Lagiewniki district, a popular sanctuary dedicated to St. Faustina, a mystic nun. Up to four million pilgrims are expected to greet the holy father during his Friday, Aug.16 to Monday, Aug.19 homecoming. (AP Photo/Jockel Finck)

Pope John Paul II blesses the faithful as he enters the God's Mercy Basilica in Krakow Lagiewniki Saturday Aug.17, 2002. (AP Photo/Alik Keplicz)

Catholics faithful from Chicago cheer as they welcome Pope John Paul II upon his arrival at the God's Mercy Basilica in Krakow, southern Poland, Saturday, Aug.17, 2002. The pope consecrated the basilica in Krakow's Lagiewniki district, a popular sanctuary dedicated to St. Faustina, a mystic nun. (AP Photo/Jockel Finck)

A large group of American Catholics from Chicago, Ill. cheers as they welcome Pope John Paul II upon his arrival at the God's Mercy Basilica in Krakow, southern Poland, Saturday, Aug.17, 2002. Tens of thousands of adoring Poles gave the ailing Pope John Paul II a joyous welcome home Saturday, lining a seven-mile route and shouting ``Long live the pope!'' as he arrived to consecrate a new basilica.(AP Photo/Jockel Finck)
Pope John Paul II blesses the newly built sanctuary at Lagiewniki in a suburb of Krakow, August 17, 2002. The Pontiff issued a ringing plea on Saturday for an end to war and suffering around the world in a sermon from the city where he endured Nazi repression. REUTERS/Peter Andrews

Pope John Paul II consecrates the Divine Mercy Sanctuary church in Lagiewniki, near Krakow, August 17, 2002. The shrine is dedicated to a nun, Saint Faustina, whose visions before World War Two formed the basis of the mystic cult of the Divine Mercy. The nun's writings were banned at first by the Vatican, but the Pope rehabilitated, beatified and in 2000 canonized her. The 82 year-old pontiff is on his ninth pilgrimage to Poland, which will last four days. REUTERS/Jerry Lampen

Bishop Piero Marini helps Pope John Paul II to rub oil on the altar during dedicated ceremony of the new sanctuary at the Lagiewniki in the suburb of Krakow, August 17, 2002. Pope John Paul issued a ringing plea on Saturday for an end to war and suffering around the world in a sermon from the city where he endured Nazi repression. REUTERS/Peter Andrews
Pope John Paul II during the blessing ceremony at God's Mercy Basilica in Krakow, southern Poland, Saturday, Aug.17, 2002. The pontiff consecrated the God's Mercy Basilica in Krakow's Lagiewniki district, a popular sanctuary dedicated to St. Faustine, a mystic nun. Up to four million pilgrims are expected to greet the holy father during his four-day homecoming visit. (AP Photo/Vincenzo Pinto, POOL)

Pope John Paul II sits on his throne during the blessing ceremony of the church of Lagiewniki, in Krakow August 17, 2002. The 82-year-old pontiff, who faces a daily battle against the effects of Parkinson's disease and arthritis, is making his ninth papal visit to his home country of Poland, spending four days in and around Krakow, where he was archbishop before his surprise election as pope in 1978. REUTERS/Vincenzo Pinto

Pope John Paul II holds his mitre during holy mass at the Lagiewniki Sanctuary in a suburb of Krakow, August 17, 2002. The Pontiff issued a ringing plea on Saturday for an end to war and suffering around the world in a sermon from the city where he endured Nazi repression. REUTERS/Peter Andrews

Pope John Paul II sits on his throne during the blessing ceremony of the church of Lagiewniki, in Krakow August 17, 2002. The 82-year-old pontiff, who faces a daily battle against the effects of Parkinson's disease and arthritis, is making his ninth papal visit to his home country of Poland, spending four days in and around Krakow, where he was archbishop before his surprise election as pope in 1978. REUTERS/Vincenzo Pinto/POOL
Pope John Paul II prays in the God's Mercy Basilica in Krakow, southern Poland, Saturday, Aug.17, 2002. Consecrating the basilica at a shrine where he used to pray on his way to forced labor in a salt quarry under the Nazis, John Paul referred to evil in the world, making what appeared to be references to the Sept. 11 terror attacks and their aftermath.. (AP Photo/Pier Paolo Cito)
The former President of Poland Lech Walesa, right, kisses the hand of Pope John Paul II, left, after the Holy Mass in the God's Mercy Basilica in Krakow, southern Poland, Saturday, Aug.17, 2002. Poles hoped the visit to his homeland would invigorate John Paul, who is exhibiting symptoms of Parkinson's disease that have left him stooped and slurred his speech at times.. (AP Photo/Pier Paolo Cito)

Followers watch Pope John Paul II on a giant video screen as he prays in the God's Mercy Basilica in Krakow, southern Poland, Saturday, Aug.17, 2002.Some 4,000 faithful clapped in rhythm as if to propel the frail, 82-year-old pope as he made his way through the just-finished Basilica of God's Mercy on a rolling platform. (AP Photo/Pier Paolo Cito)
Pope John Paul II talks to a crowd in front of the Metropolitan Residence in Krakow, southern Poland, Saturday, Aug.17, 2002 the second day of a four-day visit. Bishop at right is unidentified. (AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski)
8 posted on 08/17/2002 1:09:59 PM PDT by Pyro7480
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To: Pyro7480
Consecrating the basilica at a shrine where he used to pray on his way to forced labor in a salt quarry under the Nazis,

I had forgotten about this. It's no wonder the Holy Father "creaks and groans" under the burden of his accrued penances. He is truly a beautiful human being and an inspiration to us all.

Thank you, Pyro, for posting these beautiful pictures!!! (I added you to my ping list at work but forgot to do so at home. You are now on that list. Sorry.) Just love that shot of the nuns and the Americans from Chicago! Only once have I had the privilege of attending a consecration. It was a chapel and the bishop performed the rite. The oil is rubbed into the surface of the marble, from center outwards, until the entire surface is covered. Then they place a bowl of incense in the middle, just like in the pictures.

Turned on the mass at 5am but drifted in and out of sleep. I'll have to catch the replay.

9 posted on 08/17/2002 1:41:47 PM PDT by NYer
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To: Pyro7480
Thank you for those outstanding photographs.

I personally think the church is beautiful. Very modern but very beautiful and simple.
10 posted on 08/17/2002 1:47:29 PM PDT by Salvation
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To: NYer
You can catch the replay of the concecration at 7 pm EDT. One of the commentators on the EWTN broadcast, while the pope was blessing the altar, commented that this ritual is based on Exodus chapter 40.
9 "Take the anointing oil and anoint the Dwelling and everything in it, consecrating it and all its furnishings, so that it will be sacred. 10 Anoint the altar of holocausts and all its appurtenances, consecrating it, so that it will be most sacred... 26 He placed the golden altar in the meeting tent, in front of the veil, 27 and on it he burned fragrant incense, as the LORD had commanded him.

I'm about to post the pope's homily from the Mass, so keep a watch for it. I'll ping you when it's up. Thanks for responding. I appreciate it. :-)

11 posted on 08/17/2002 1:52:56 PM PDT by Pyro7480
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To: Salvation
I made a little mistake on the HTML on the last three pictures' captions, but it'll be ok. Thanks for responding. :-)
12 posted on 08/17/2002 2:05:05 PM PDT by Pyro7480
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To: Pyro7480
Thanks. I appreciate the ping to this lovely thread. =)
13 posted on 08/17/2002 3:27:08 PM PDT by JMJ333
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To: Pyro7480
Thanks for posting the pics. I see some old friends from Chicago in one of the pics. That makes my day!
14 posted on 08/17/2002 7:00:17 PM PDT by Siobhan
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To: NYer
Thank you for this beautiful and heart warming thread!
15 posted on 08/17/2002 7:57:12 PM PDT by Lady In Blue
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To: Pyro7480
Wouldn't it be great to see that many nuns in the streets in the USA? In habits! I love the pictures. Thanks once again.
16 posted on 08/17/2002 8:50:14 PM PDT by Salvation
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To: Lady In Blue; Litany; Salvation; NYer; Canticle_of_Deborah; Desdemona; JMJ333; sandyeggo; fatima; ..
ping
17 posted on 04/27/2003 2:06:43 PM PDT by nickcarraway
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To: nickcarraway
Prayer Bump....Divine Mercy from SARS among all the other ills of the world. Prayers for the suffering.
18 posted on 04/27/2003 2:39:44 PM PDT by Domestic Church (AMDG...)
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To: nickcarraway

"I promise that the soul that shall venerate this image will not perish." (Diary, 48)

God's blessings to you, Nick, on this beautiful day! Thank you for reposting the link.

The pope is off to Spain next weekend to cannonize another saint. EWTN will have full coverage of that event, much as they did with this one.

19 posted on 04/27/2003 2:44:01 PM PDT by NYer (Laudate Dominum Alleluia)
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To: Salvation
I personally think the church is beautiful.

It is beautiful for an auditorium, but it does not look like a church to me. Where is the crucifix? Why is the saint's picture up high while the cross is down at the floor? I guess I'll never recover from Vatican II.

20 posted on 04/27/2003 3:40:30 PM PDT by Bigg Red
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To: Salvation
Oops! Sorry. I just realized that the picture high on the wall is of Jesus and not of Sr. Faustina. Oh, well, I still don't like the church.
21 posted on 04/27/2003 3:43:21 PM PDT by Bigg Red
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To: NYer
FR Divine Mercy Thread
 [Columbia Article]

Links from Columbia article:

Knights of Mercy program
John Paul II Institute of Divine Mercy
Eucharistic Apostles of Divine Mercy

MID RUMORS THAT HE WOULD announce his retirement due to failing health, Pope John Paul II traveled to Poland last summer and proclaimed a message far different to the expectant world. During a dedication Mass in the shrine of Divine Mercy in Krakow Aug. 17, the pope announced: “Today, therefore, in this shrine, I wish solemnly to entrust the world to Divine Mercy.” The Divine Mercy devotion, though humble in origin, offers nothing less than the promise of salvation and peace to all mankind. Efforts on many different fronts are furthering the hope that Catholics everywhere will soon know of the extraordinary graces promised by Our Lord to those who follow his simple call to mercy and trust.

(Above) A potrait of Sister Faustina Kowalska and the Divine Mercy image of Christ hangs from St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome during her canonization in 2000. (Right) Fourth Degree Knights at 2002 Mercy Sunday observances in Stockbridge, Mass.

ST. FAUSTINA:
THE MESSENGER

Helena Kowalska was born in Glogowiec, Poland, on Aug. 25, 1905. The third of 10 children born to poor, devout parents, she exhibited an early love of prayer, work, obedience and sensitivity to the poor. At age 7, she felt the first stirrings of a vocation in her heart, and before turning 20 she entered the Congregation of the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy, where she received her religious name Sister Maria Faustina. Sister Faustina’s religious life seemed unremarkable to most observers. She spent her days attending to kitchen and garden tasks, or acting as the doorkeeper in various convents. But she experienced an extraordinary interior communion with God, the extent of which was known only to her superiors. Her supernatural gifts included revelations, visions, hidden stigmata, bilocation, prophecy and the reading of souls.

In 1934, at the urging of her spiritual director and, later, of Jesus himself, Sister Faustina began keeping a diary of her revelations from Jesus and mystical experiences. The result is the 600-page spiritual classic, Diary of St. Faustina: Divine Mercy in My Soul, which continues to astound scholars with its depth of spiritual and theological insight. She recorded this diary over the span of four years, ending it shortly before her death from tuberculosis in 1938.

DIVINE MERCY: THE MESSAGE “Encourage souls to place great trust in My fathomless mercy. Let the weak, sinful soul have no fear to approach Me, for even if it had more sins than there are grains of sand in the world, all will be drowned in the immeasurable depths of My mercy” (Diary, 1059).

Jesus’ message of mercy to St. Faustina was not a new revelation, but a reminder of those timeless truths of our faith about God’s merciful love for all mankind and his desire for us to turn to him with trust. What was new were the forms of devotion that Jesus requested, and the powerful promises attached to them. There are generally considered to be four basic elements of the Divine Mercy devotion: the image, the feast, the chaplet and the Hour of Mercy.

THE IMAGE
“I became aware of the Lord Jesus clothed in a white garment. One hand was raised in blessing, the other was touching the garment at the breast. From the opening in the garment at the breast there came forth two large rays, one red, and the other pale. … After a while Jesus said to me: paint an image according to the pattern you see, with the inscription: ‘Jesus, I trust in You’” (Diary, 47).

This image of the risen Christ reminds us of all Jesus did for us through his passion, death and resurrection. The two rays represent the blood and water that flowed from his heart when it was pierced by a lance. The hand raised in blessing recalls the scene of Easter Sunday eve and the institution of the sacrament of penance. St. Faustina further noted two promises given by Our Lord: “I promise that the soul that will venerate this image will not perish. I also promise victory over [its] enemies already here on earth, especially at the hour of death. I Myself will defend it as My own glory” (Diary, 48).

THE FEAST
Jesus specifically requested that the Sunday after Easter be designated as the feast of Mercy. In all, he made 14 requests for the feast in revelations to St. Faustina and attached a promise of mercy to those who observe it devoutly.

“Whoever approaches the Fount of Life on this day will be granted complete remission of sins and punishment. ... On that day all the divine floodgates through which graces flow are opened. Let no soul fear to draw near to Me, even though its sins be as scarlet” (Diary, 300 and 699).


Pope John Paul II prays in the God’s Mercy Basilica in Krakow during his August 2002 visit to Poland. The pope consecrated the basilica at a shrine where he used to pray on his way to forced labor in a salt quarry under the Nazis.

To observe the feast of Mercy properly, and to receive the great gift of forgiveness and remission of all temporal punishment — a new beginning such as conferred at baptism — we should sincerely repent of all our sins, place our trust in Jesus, go to confession within a reasonable time before the feast, receive holy Communion, venerate an image of Divine Mercy and practice acts of mercy. THE CHAPLET
Dictated to St. Faustina by Our Lord himself, the chaplet is to be prayed on ordinary rosary beads. Jesus instructed her to pray it “unceasingly,” and promised to souls who recited it devoutly great graces throughout life and particularly at the hour of death. To pray the chaplet, begin by saying the Our Father, Hail Mary and the Apostles’ Creed. Then on the large beads, 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 the small beads, pray:

For the sake of his sorrowful passion, have mercy on us and on the whole world.

In conclusion, pray three times:

Holy God, holy Mighty One, holy Immortal One, have mercy on us and on the whole world.


Father Frank Gluhosky blesses a copy of the image of Divine Mercy surrounded by members of Father Michael J. McGivney Assembly in Stuart, Fla. Robert Allard, a member of the assembly, promotes devotion to Divine Mercy through various programs, including one expressly for Knights.

THE HOUR OF MERCY
In a revelation to St. Faustina in October 1937, Jesus requested daily prayer at 3 p.m. to honor the hour of his death and to implore mercy for sinners.

“If only for a brief moment, immerse yourself in My Passion, particularly in My abandonment at the moment of agony. This is the hour of great mercy for the whole world. … In this hour, I will refuse nothing to the soul that makes a request of Me in virtue of My Passion” (Diary, 1320).

Jesus said that praying the Stations of the Cross at this hour would be beneficial, or, if that couldn’t be done, he asked for a visit to the Blessed Sacrament in adoration of the merciful heart of Jesus.

MERCY FOR OUR TIMES
Preparing the world for Our Lord’s return by spreading the message of Divine Mercy is a task that many in the Church have taken on. The Congregation of the Marians of the Immaculate Conception administer a National Shrine of the Divine Mercy in Stockbridge, Mass., and sponsor the John Paul II Institute of Divine Mercy, which trains clergy, religious and laity in living and spreading the message. The Eucharistic Apostles of the Divine Mercy, a lay organization associated with the religious congregation, starts prayer cenacles in parishes that promote eucharistic adoration and perform works of mercy.

Knight Robert Allard, a member of Father McGivney Assembly in Stuart, Fla., is a prominent member of the organization.

Father Seraphim S. Michalenko, of the Marians of the Immaculate Conception and director emeritus of the Institute of Divine Mercy, says the popularity of the devotion is growing. “It’s individual lay people who are doing the most.

All of this is by word of mouth, people telling others about the graces they’ve received and then inviting them to the services, like to a chaplet that is said before Mass.”

Plowing the way for these seeds of evangelization is the world’s foremost champion of Divine Mercy, Pope John Paul II.

Dedicated to spreading the message since his days as a young priest, he has played what can only be described as a providential role in this mission.

In 1965, as archbishop of Krakow, he initiated the process by which, 35 years later as pope, he would declare Sister Faustina the first saint of the Jubilee Year 2000. At the canonization ceremony, on April 30, 2000, John Paul also announced that the Second Sunday of Easter would be henceforth known as Divine Mercy Sunday.

He marked his pontificate early with the theme of mercy by issuing in 1980 the encyclical Dives in Misericordia (Rich in Mercy), and more recently, on Aug. 4, 2002, authorized a plenary indulgence for Catholics who observe the precepts on Divine Mercy Sunday. Given John Paul’s historic actions, the life and mission of St. Faustina, and the vitality and faith of the Polish people who have spread the message of mercy beyond their homeland, one is struck by Our Lord’s prophetic words to St. Faustina: “I bear a special love for Poland. ... From her will come forth the spark that will prepare the world for My final coming” (Diary, 1732).

Melaine Ryther is a freelance writer whose work appears regularly in Catholic periodicals. She writes from Kennewick, Wash., where she is a wife and a mother.

 
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Introduction

COMMISSIONED TO ASSIST OUR CHURCH

This is designed especially for the Knights of Columbus councils and assemblies so that they may assist our Holy Father John Paul II and our Church to celebrate our new feast called Divine Mercy Sunday.  One of the necessary parts of the solemn celebration of this feast is the veneration of the Image of Divine Mercy in the Church and this will be the main focus of the “Knights of Mercy Program”.

This new feast was made official by decree on May 5th 2000 by the Vatican at the request of Pope John Paul II.  Pope John Paul II indicated the he had fulfilled the will of Christ by instituting this new Feast of Divine Mercy.  Jesus through St. Faustina requested a Feast of Mercy on the Sunday after Easter.  Our Pope has been hoping that everyone takes full advantage of the special graces available on this feast day.
 

EXTRAORDINARY GRACES

What special graces, you might ask?  It is the promise that Jesus made for a total pardon of sins and punishment for anyone that would go to Confession and receive Holy Communion on this Feast of Mercy (Divine Mercy Sunday).   Our Lord said “Whoever approaches the Fountain of Life on this day will be granted complete forgiveness of sins and punishment.” (From the diary of St. Faustina, entry 300)

To further put the Church’s stamp of approval on Our Lord’s promise, the Vatican just issued a Plenary Indulgence for Divine Mercy Sunday on June 29th, 2002.  The decree states that priests should inform the faithful about the plenary indulgence and to lead the prayers required after all the masses.  It also calls for priests to be very generous in hearing confessions and to encourage everyone to do acts of mercy.

A SPECIAL CALLING FOR THE KNIGHTS

Because the Knights have a special calling to assist the Church in its endeavors, and because we are in solidarity with the mission of the Pope, we must do our best to assist every parish to celebrate Divine Mercy Sunday.  It is very clear, from the words of Jesus that this feast is to be a refuge and shelter for all souls, especially for poor sinners.  As Knights we are called to do acts of charity and there could be no greater act of charity than to participate in the salvation of the poor lost or alienated souls.

We have many Catholics that have fallen away from the Church.  Many only go to mass once a year, probably on Easter.  Many more have not gone to Confession in a long time and these poor souls could also be damned for eternity.  What better acts of charity could we do than to assist our Church in celebrating this great feast which can provide for them the total forgiveness of their sins and punishment? 

Our Lord said On that day all the Divine floodgates through which graces flow are opened.  Let no soul fear to draw near to Me, even though its sins be as scarlet.   Souls perish in spite of My bitter Passion.  I am giving them the last hope of salvation; that is, the Feast of My Mercy…Tell souls about this great mercy of Mine, because the awful day, the day of My justice is near.” (Diary, 699, 965)

WE ARE CALLED TO EVANGELIZE

Pope John Paul II stated in his greetings in August 2002 “The theme for the 120th Supreme Convention – (“Now Is the Time for the Great Catch”)- is a summons to ever trust in the Lord’s command to 'put out into the deep' ( Lk 5:4) in obedience to His word."  Our Lord is calling out to His Vicar, Pope John Paul II, as He did to Peter “to cast our nets out once more” using Divine Mercy Sunday to obtain that Great Catch.  We must help our Holy Father to let down these nets.  The results, as we remember from Luke’s Gospel, was an incredible catch of fish.  In the same way, by trusting in the promise of Our Lord, we can bring home many lost souls on this new Feast of Mercy (Divine Mercy Sunday).

Our Lord said How very much I desire the salvation of souls!... if only they were willing to accept My grace.  The greatest sinners would achieve great sanctity, if only they would trust in My mercy.” (Diary, 1784)  The graces on Divine Mercy Sunday are fully capable of totally restoring a terrible lost sinner to complete sanctity and in turn, that new found soul in Christ will radiate that merciful love to all others.

OUR LORD’S INSTRUCTIONS AND PROMISE

Jesus said,Do whatever is within your power to spread devotion to My mercy.  I will make up for what you lack.  Tell aching mankind to snuggle close to My merciful Heart, and I will fill it with peace.” (Diary, 1074)  And His promise: “Souls who spread the honor of My mercy I shield through their entire life as a tender mother her infant, and at the hour of death I will not be a Judge for them, but the Merciful Savior.” (Diary, 1075)

It is clear that we must do everything that we possibly can to spread the message of Divine Mercy.  What follows is a simple plan to ensure that every parish will be prepared to celebrate Divine Mercy Sunday.  This will bring about a great renewal in the Church and bring home that “Great Catch” of many inactive, poor lost souls.

THE SIMPLE PLAN

1.   Contact your parish:  Ask if your parish has an Image of Divine Mercy suitable for veneration and large enough for everyone to see on Divine Mercy Sunday.  If they need an image, the Knights could offer to purchase one for the parish.  They are available on this website in the on-line catalog in different sizes, laminated and ready to be framed, already framed, or as a ready to hang tapestry.  Our goal is to have the image venerated in every single parish.

2.   Approach your pastor: Ask your pastor if he has a copy of the Decree for the Plenary Indulgence for Divine Mercy Sunday.  In case your pastor does not have a copy, print one out for him by clicking on the words above underlined in red that will access the official plenary indulgence from the Vatican website. Be sure to approach your pastor with much humility and respect.

3.   Offer to have a procession: Approach your pastor again and make him an offer to process with the Image of Divine Mercy using the Honor Guards (if possible) on Divine Mercy Sunday.  Remember that Our Lord asked that the image be solemnly blessed and venerated on the Feast of Mercy.  If the Honor Guards are not available then Sir Knights can process in their Tuxedos or with other Brother Knights.

4.   Show your pastor the images:  Before purchasing an image, check with your pastor to see which one he would like to use.  Show him the different kinds available on this website by printing out the Online Catalog or view it with him on the parishes’ office computer.  Some of the pastors will want to permanently install the images in their churches or other facilities.  You might also consider purchasing one for your council or assembly.  Our Lord has made great promises regarding the veneration of the images.

5.   Provide information about the feast:  Also available on this website are many different articles about Divine Mercy Sunday that could be used for local and diocesan newspapers and also for the parish bulletin.  You should focus on reaching those that have been away from the Church and those that have not been to Confession in a long time and are in need of receiving mercy.

6.   Encourage your pastor:  Try to encourage your pastor to announce the feast on Palm Sunday and especially on Easter Sunday when there are many people in attendance that do not attend mass weekly.  Kindly ask him to encourage everyone to come back to the regular practice of Sunday mass, starting with Divine Mercy Sunday and encourage them to go to Confession if needed.

7.   Prepare your fellow members:  Explain to fellow members the graces that are available on Divine Mercy Sunday.  Provide information so that they may tell others about Divine Mercy Sunday.  Many have fallen away from going to Confession on a regular basis.  Our Holy Father has called us all to resume the practice of frequent Confessions.

8.   Ask for extra Confession time:  Ask your pastor if he could make extra time for Confessions for those that did not go before Easter.  According to a Vatican document issued during the Jubilee Year 2000 called "The Gift of the Indulgence" it is allowed for someone to go to Confession within about 20 days before or after the feast.

View the Online Image Catalog


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Taken from the www.divinemercysunday.com website's "Knights of Mercy Program".

Call Robert R. Allard, Director, A.D.M for more information at 1-888-732-0722

 

22 posted on 04/27/2003 4:14:17 PM PDT by Coleus (RU-486 Kills Babies)
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To: nickcarraway
Thank you
23 posted on 04/27/2003 5:22:54 PM PDT by firewalk
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To: nickcarraway; Coleus
DIVINE MERCY BUMP!
24 posted on 04/27/2003 6:06:15 PM PDT by cpforlife.org (“My people are destroyed from lack of knowledge.” Hosea 4:6)
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To: nickcarraway
Wonderful News.
25 posted on 04/28/2003 4:38:23 AM PDT by fatima (Go Karen,Look at all these's prayers.For all our troops,we love you.)
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To: Bigg Red
Why is the saint's picture up high while the cross is down at the floor? I guess I'll never recover from Vatican II.

Paint an image according to the pattern you see, with the signature: Jesus I trust in You. I desire that this image be venerated, first in your chapel, and throughout the world. (Diary 47)

I promise that the soul that will venerate this image will not perish. I also promise victory over its enemies already here on earth, especially at the hour of death. I myself will defend it as My own glory. (Diary 48)

It is for these reasons that the image takes center spot.

The building is rather austere ... but not as radical as Cardinal Mahony's "Roj Mahal".

26 posted on 04/28/2003 10:27:17 AM PDT by NYer (Laudate Dominum Alleluia)
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To: NYer
who began predicting the pope's imminent death, more than 10 years ago, are now dead themselves.

I hope they are resting in Christ and can see the humor of this.

27 posted on 04/28/2003 11:44:59 AM PDT by tiki
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