Friday, April 16, 2004
Divine Mercy Sunday  

The second Sunday of Easter has been designated Divine Mercy Sunday. First our Holy Father, granted the feast universal recognition at the canonization of St. Faustina on April 30, 2000. Then on May 23, 2000, the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments declared that "throughout the world the Second Sunday of Easter will receive the name Divine Mercy Sunday, a perennial invitation to the Christian world to face, with confidence in divine benevolence, the difficulties and trials that mankind will experience in the years to come."

St. Faustina received numerous private revelations from our Lord. In several of these revelations, our Lord asked that the second Sunday of Easter be celebrated as the feast of His Divine Mercy.

I want the image solemnly blessed on the first Sunday after Easter, and I want it to be venerated publicly so that every soul may know about it. (Diary 341)

The liturgical texts for this Sunday remind us of God's mercy which He extends to us through the sacrament of penance. The reading from the Gospel of John (John 20:19-31) records the institution of the sacrament of reconciliation by our Lord when after His resurrection, He breathed on the disciples and said, "Receive the Holy Spirit. Whose sins you forgive are forgiven them, and whose sins you retain are retained (John 20:22-23)." When Jesus breaths on the disciples, we are reminded of when God breathed on Adam to give life to his body. Jesus is breathing on the disciples to give them new life. They are able, through the sacrament of penance, to extend that new life to others.

Associated with this feast is the opportunity to obtain a plenary indulgence:

And so the Supreme Pontiff, motivated by an ardent desire to foster in Christians this devotion to Divine Mercy as much as possible in the hope of offering great spiritual fruit to the faithful, in the Audience granted on 13 June 2002, to those Responsible for the Apostolic Penitentiary, granted the following Indulgences:

a plenary indulgence, granted under the usual conditions (sacramental confession, Eucharistic communion and prayer for the intentions of Supreme Pontiff) to the faithful who, on the Second Sunday of Easter or Divine Mercy Sunday, in any church or chapel, in a spirit that is completely detached from the affection for a sin, even a venial sin, take part in the prayers and devotions held in honour of Divine Mercy, or who, in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament exposed or reserved in the tabernacle, recite the Our Father and the Creed, adding a devout prayer to the merciful Lord Jesus (e.g. Merciful Jesus, I trust in you!");

A partial indulgence, granted to the faithful who, at least with a contrite heart, pray to the merciful Lord Jesus a legitimately approved invocation.

For more information, on the Feast of Divine Mercy and the conditions for obtaining a plenary indulgence click here.

Posted by David at 7:00 PM  |  Comments (0)  | 


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