The message of The Divine Mercy is simple. It is that God loves us – all of us. And, He wants us to recognize that His mercy is greater than our sins, so that we will call upon Him with trust, receive His mercy, and let it flow through us to others. Thus, all will come to share His joy.
This message and devotion to Jesus as The Divine Mercy is based on the writings of Saint Faustina Kowalska, an uneducated Polish nun who, in obedience to her spiritual director, wrote a diary of about 600 pages recording the revelations she received about God's mercy. Even before her death in 1938, the devotion to The Divine Mercy had begun to spread.
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The Divine Mercy Sunday Indulgence
On 29 June 2002, the Apostolic Penitentiary of the Holy See promulgated a decree creating new indulgences that may be gained by the faithful in connection with the celebration of Divine Mercy Sunday. This decree grants a plenary indulgence to those who comply with all the conditions established, and a partial indulgence to those who incompletely fulfill the conditions.
I. The usual conditions for every plenary indulgence:
- sacramental confession [according to previously issued norms, within abut 20 days before or after]
- Eucharistic communion [according to previously issued norms, preferably on the day, or the days before or after]
- prayer for the intentions of Supreme Pontiff [certain prayers are not specified]
II. The specific conditions for this Indulgence
On 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, 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. [e.g. Jesus I trust in You. My Jesus mercy. or any other approved invocation]
Those who cannot go to church or the seriously ill
Conditions for a Plenary Indulgence:
- totally detesting any sin,
- the intention of fulfilling as soon as possible the three usual conditions of confession, communion and prayers for the Holy Father
- recite the Our Father and the Creed before a devout image of Our Merciful Lord Jesus
- pray a devout invocation to the Merciful Lord Jesus (e.g. Merciful Jesus, I trust in you).
If it is impossible to do even this:
- with a spiritual intention unite with those carrying out the prescribed practice for obtaining the Indulgence in the usual way and
- offer to the Merciful Lord a prayer and the sufferings of their illness and the difficulties of their lives, with the resolution to accomplish as soon as possible the three conditions prescribed to obtain the plenary indulgence.
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