Thinking myself “well-prepared” I wrote this article way in advance, as part of my spiritual nourishment during these days of isolation. But God intervened and reminded me that His ways are not man’s ways, and His plans are far better than our own, so I found myself rewriting and editing the article in response to an unexpected situation that took me by surprise… I was not “well prepared” after all.
My Dad passed away during this recent
Holy Week and was buried on Good Friday, with no family or friends to farewell him. But God was there, and that’s all that matters. God was there whether or not we believe it… He was with Him in those last hours alone, just as Jesus was with the ‘good thief’ in his last hours. The timeless conversation that took place on Calvary, amidst the 7 Last Words of Christ, were repeated, I am certain, on the day my Dad took his last breath – “Jesus, remember me, when you come into your kingdom.” There is no greater mercy than Divine Mercy which was witnessed by all on that cross when Jesus responded… “Today, you will be with me in Paradise.” I know, with all my heart, that these were the words of Christ to my Dad. I can be sure of this because I have prayed the Divine Mercy Chaplet and the Holy Rosary every day for as long as I can remember, and I trust that God hears the prayers of a wounded heart.
More than ever, today I rejoice in the Glorious Resurrection of Our Lord, and most especially in God’s Mercy. He has truly shown me that our prayers and offerings are never in vain, for His Mercy can never be outdone. It was providential that my Dad died during Holy Week, the week of mercy and forgiveness, for only God knows the barriers that kept my stepfather distant from Him for many years. Only God knows the heart of a repentant sinner and in confidence I have entrusted my Dad into the merciful Heart of God, the Fountain of Divine Mercy and Infinite Love.
Is it imprudent to trust in Divine Providence and Divine Mercy, to “let go and let God”? Certainly not. It would be careless, however, to expect God to throw us a lifesaver when we know very well how to swim. God’s Mercy has carried me through so many trials in life and given me the strength to endure much suffering, united to His Passion. To overcome my own anxieties and burdens when feeling overwhelmed or helpless, I continue to lay them at His Feet with my tears and heartfelt prayer of total surrender:
“Jesus, I trust in You”
– Written by Salwa Elias
This year, the Feast of Divine Mercy is Sunday 19th April 2020.
The words spoken by Jesus to St Faustina were: “I desire that the first Sunday after Easter be the Feast of Mercy.” (Diary 299) “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. On that day all the divine floodgates through which grace flow are opened.” (Diary 699) “Souls perish in spite of My bitter Passion. I am giving them the last hope of salvation; that is, the Feast of My Mercy.” (Diary 965)
A plenary indulgence is granted to those who receive Holy Communion and frequent the sacrament of reconciliation on this feast day as well as placing complete trust in God and carrying out acts of mercy. In order to best prepare for the feast, a novena is receommended – the recitation of the Divine Mercy chaplet for 9 days, which begins on Good Friday. Jesus said, “By this novena, I will grant every possible grace to souls.” (Diary 796)
During these unique times in which we are living in social isolation, how are we to celebrate the feast of Divine Mercy this year? Fr Chris Alar explains.
Our good friends and partners at Divine Mercy Publications have more information on the message of Divine Mercy and resources available on their website.