You might want to think twice before trashing the Divine Mercy

Trad Hate for the Divine Mercy devotion is so cringe to me. Yes, I know all about the problematic parts of St. Faustina’s diary. Saints make mistakes, even to the point of sin. It happens. Sister Lucia made mistakes too. Also, it’s not her fault if the Divine Mercy has overtaken devotion to the Sacred Heart, and/or diminution of the Rosary. None of that should have happened. If you are a regular reader of this space, you know of my ardent devotion to the Sacred Heart, His Eucharistic Heart, Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, and the Most Holy Rosary. You can have all of these things, if you direct your will towards them, and act.

But the subject we are dealing with today is a fact, a revealed truth, not up for debate: Divine Mercy. You’re free to reject St. Faustina’s revelations completely and remain a good Catholic, as they are private revelation. You can even reject Fatima if you want, although I wouldn’t recommend it. But the Divine Mercy itself is not private revelation, it’s Scriptural. The administration of Divine Mercy is the very business of the Church. It’s what the Barque was built for. It’s why you’re aboard Her.

(Fans of Star Trek TOS will recognize that device)

I also think it’s totally appropriate for this feast to occur on the Octave Day of Easter. It doesn’t mean the Octave Day of Easter has been suppressed… that’s like claiming that calling it Low Sunday or Dominica in Albis or Quasimodo diminishes the Octave. Furthermore, the readings for today miraculously appear to be perfect selections to instruct us on the Divine Mercy, even though the old missal obviously pre-dates the institution of the feast. Have you ever noticed that? Yes, I said miraculous. God knows what he is doing.

EPISTLE I John 5:4-10. “Beloved: For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world. And this is the victory which overcameth the world: Our faith. Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God? This is he that came by water and blood, Jesus Christ: not by water only but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit which testifieth that Christ is the truth. And there are Three who give testimony in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost. And these three are one. And there are three that give testimony on earth: the spirit and the water and the blood. And these three are one. If we receive the testimony of men, the testimony of God is greater. For this is the testimony of God, which is greater, because he hath testified of his Son. He that believeth in the Son of God hath the testimony of God in himself.”

How can you read that and not have the image of Divine Mercy come to mind?

Note that the Epistle and Gospel are both from St. John the Apostle.

GOSPEL John 20:19-31. “At that time, when it was late the same day, the first of the week, and the doors were shut, where the disciples were gathered together, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood in the midst and said to them: “Peace be to you.” And when he had said this, he shewed them his hands and his side. The disciples therefore were glad, when they saw the Lord. He said therefore to them again: “Peace be to you. As the Father hath sent me, I also send you.” When he had said this, he breathed on them; and he said to them: “Receive ye the Holy Ghost. Whose sins you shall forgive, they are forgiven them: and whose sins you shall retain, they are retained.” Now Thomas, one of the twelve, who is called Didymus, was not with them when Jesus came. The other disciples therefore said to him: “We have seen the Lord.” But he said to them: “Except I shall see in his hands the print of the nails and put my finger into the place of the nails and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.” And after eight days, again his disciples were within, and Thomas with them. Jesus cometh, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst and said: “Peace be to you.” Then he said to Thomas: “Put in thy finger hither and see my hands. And bring hither the hand and put it into my side. And be not faithless, but believing.” Thomas answered and said to him: “My Lord and my God.” Jesus saith to him: “Because thou hast seen me, Thomas, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen and have believed.” Many other signs also did Jesus in the sight of his disciples, which are not written in this book. But these are written, that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God: and that believing, you may have life in his name.”

So here we read, on Divine Mercy Sunday and the Octave Day of Easter, of the institution of the Sacrament of Confession. Is that not wholly appropriate? The preaching today inevitably focuses on St. Thomas, with the earlier portion of the Gospel ignored. Which is too bad, since the Sacrament of Confession is also largely ignored in the N.O. Church today, except for 3:00-3:15pm on Saturdays and by appointment only. A billion “Catholics” all over the world who think they don’t need Confession, who effectively reject it as a sacrament, wherefore rejecting the Divine Mercy. Woe to them. Christ’s offer of peace, cited twice in today’s Gospel, comes only through the Spirit, blood, and water of Divine Mercy, conferred by Grace.

Christ instructed Sister Faustina: “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 opened…the divine floodgates through which grace flows are opened. Let no soul fear to draw near to Me, even though its sins be as scarlet…Mankind will not have peace until it turns to the font of my mercy.”

“even though its sins be as scarlet…” <raises hand>

Thanks be to God for His Divine Mercy.

25 thoughts on “You might want to think twice before trashing the Divine Mercy”

  1. That diary and the Divine Mercy devotion are what brought me back to Holy Church. And I’m firmly trad.
    It was the bridge to the Ark.
    For me and for many more.
    Good fruit.

  2. Thanks for this. I have not read the Diary and am not a great follower of this devotion … but I believe that it is and will be intimately connected with the forthcoming Triumph of the Immaculate Heart. Total war, chaos, and natural disasters, capped by the Three Days of Darkness, will precede this. All mankind will be in terror before Our Lady intervenes. The soul that cries out to God in desperation will be heard — that is Divine Mercy, not ‘cheap grace’ as some trads disparage it. The scenario makes perfect sense for what will be the end of our era (not of the world).
    Further, I have an intense interest in the prophecies of Alois Irlmaier, the Bavarian plumber who died ca. 1957. This is purely my personal hunch here, but recall that Irlmaier says when the darkness lifts, ‘they will be singing the Easter song’ in Moscow. The date of Orthodox Easter can vary widely from ours, but this year and in 2023, 2026, and 2029, it falls on Divine Mercy Sunday. Wouldn’t this make perfect sense in retrospect and give real meaning to the establishment of Divine Mercy Sunday? Then any remaining difficulties with this devotion could be sorted out.

    1. I have looked quite a bit at Irlmaier, as well. Before he died, he told his family, “Whatever you do, stay Catholic!” Interesting!

      1. He gained the ability to forsee future events after visiting a neighbour. He was waiting alone in the house, and noticed a piece of artwork depicting the Virgin Mary. He was admiring it, when she “leaned out” of the picture frame and smiled at him. After that he received this amazing gift. He has even described people playing with what he called Zuban boxes. Zubans were a kind of cigarette that came in a flat-boxed package about the size of a smart phone. He even described the finger swipe we use! I was thinking of him today after hearing reports of Russian soldiers raping Ukrainian women. He said this would be a feature of the war to come, although I suppose it is a feature of all wars.

      2. I have studied Irlmaier at length with every resource I could find and translate from the German, he along with Marie Julie Jahenny explain WWIII and the comet chastisement 3dofd (which IS the Third Secret btw) from the German and French perspectives. Irlmaier was deeply Catholic. He would regularly stop by to visit orders of nuns. He explains it well, what a great gift our Church gives us with these prophets to inspire peace, calmness and confidence in our future, no protestant has that, only their fake “brother jimmy bob had a word with the Lord last night.”

      3. Btw, I’ve never read Irlmaier ever saying anything about Russians raping Ukrainian women please point me to the source on that. Be very careful about anything you see in western mainstream news on Ukraine, almost all of it is fake.

  3. Gayem, what do you think of this? For me, observing the Divine Mercy is fine and believing in God’s mercy is absolutely correct as this article also says but the devotion to the Divine Mercy – I am not advocating its devotion because as per Marie Julie Jahenny said, it will eclipse the Sacred Heart devotion ( whis is sooooo true!) This article also does not mention the devotion but only to adhere to the Divine Mercy Sunday of the Novos Ordo mass. What are your thoughts on this…
    From: Twink Beldia Palacio
    Christus vincit, Christus regnat, Christus imperat.
    Sent from my iPhone

  4. IDK, maybe because I did the Protestant thing for 12 years or so…I just cannot get into the DM devotion. I entered the Church 2015 and of course the following Sunday was Divine Mercy. I hadn’t heard about DM until that morning at Mass. I don’t remember exactly what was said about it, but I vividly remember thinking this sounds like the Protestant churches I just left…but I told myself I must be wrong because this IS the true Church. A few months or maybe almost a year later I heard the DMC sung and thought this is ugly, even creepy….but again I said to myself, I must be wrong, there’s something wrong with me. Then I read about the controversy. I’m goin’ with my gut and steering clear.

    1. I get what you’re saying about the common sung setting of the devotion. It’s somber. But again, the words themselves are somber… “For the sake of His Sorrowful Passion.” All I know is that the Divine Mercy itself cannot be a wrong thing.

      1. Oh I agree Mark. The prayers in and of themselves are fine….but the devotion, the picture, the chaplet, the diary and even Divine Mercy Sunday are cringe to me. And my story above is not exaggerated at all. I literally knew nothing about DMS before that day, but vividly remember what my gut told me.

        1. All I can say is that I felt exactly as you do now, for years. It took a personal experience to convince me otherwise, and I only lukewarmly attached myself to the devotion, yet it yielded immediate fruit.

      2. Im very happy for you and I’ll keep that in mind.
        And of course per usual, thanks for all you do here and on the podcasts. Expecting another very soon? 😊

      3. It’s not somber; it’s treacly. I love the chaplet, but it’s just like our Novus Ordo times that it’s been made to sound like the moans of a melodramatic teenager instead of the beautiful prayer that it is.
        What I also find reprehensible is that Novus Ordo folks, including some priests, use this new feast to denigrate traditional terms like “low Sunday.” Oh well; have mercy on them, and on the whole world, O Lord. Especially on me.

  5. Thanks for this post. Glad to hear you think it’s a real thing. I don’t get why some traditional Catholics trash this yet still embrace plenary indulgences. I would love to see myself in purgatory but would regret not taking advantage of this chance to drastically reduce my time there. Keep up the great work!

    1. Unfortunately, many adherents of the Divine Mercy do not realize that there are requirements attached to the promises. Confession must be made within 20 days of Divine Mercy Sunday, Communion of course, and detachment from even venial sins as in plenary indulgences. That’s what prevents many of us from the plenary part, those dang venial sins 😏

  6. This will sound bizarre, but have you ever heard of the “Mandela effect” and how it affects the Bible? For example, I am sure “Loony Tunes” used to be called “Loony Toons”. I don’t have an explanation how it’s possible or why some people remember. These passages remind me of it.

      1. Actually look into the matter with an open mind. Otherwise what I say will sound like heresy or insanity. It effects more than fruit loops, JC Penny’s, Proctor and Gamble, the Soviet Union Flag, and other minor secular things. I can’t say more, because it just sounds crazy to talk about it. P

  7. The Chaplet is beautiful and very powerful when said in the presence of the dying ,or for them from a distance.I know this from experience.

  8. Private peeve:
    In my 37 years in the Church – my anniversary is tomorrow, in fact- the elevation of private revelations to feasts for the whole Church is one thing that makes me cranky and confused.
    Either we are free to accept them or we are not- you can’t have it both ways. I have never gotten a satisfactory answer as to why the above contradiction is acceptable.
    “Well, it’s not a Holy Day of Obligation- you don’t have to go.” is about the best so far.
    But still inadequate.
    The problem with Divine Mercy Sunday is the above- and it’s not the universal doctrine of Divine Mercy, which everyone accepts, but the overlay of the Sr. Faustina explications that turn it into something
    cringe to us. And if the devotion and the picture and Sr. Faustina herself give you the seer-willies, you’re still stuck with the feast.
    All that said, unless someone is touting a condemned devotion, I’m all for everyone using the devotions that
    strengthen their spiritual life. No one is rejecting us, or Our Lord or Lady or the saints, if they don’t find our favorite devotion helpful.

    1. You’re calling attention to something important here. It’s one thing to have a private devotion to the things Sr. Faustina wrote, etc., but quite another for this devotion, rooted in private revelations, and hence, not de fide, to be elevated, as you say, to a feast day in the entire Church. Granted, I do not assist at NO masses, but I see the larger problem. Many Catholics are rightly troubled by the connection between the DM devotion and JP II, period. He was a huge and ardent advocate of the false ecumenism propagated by Vatican II, and his writings show this clearly, over and over again — as if the prayer event at Assisi left one in any doubt. In short, JP II was a modernist, and there’s nothing wrong with doubting his judgment on Sr. Faustina, for example, as well his judgment in adding the so-called luminous mysteries to the rosary. Another related issue, of course, is the major changes made by JP II to procedures for beatification and canonization, which in turn have led to uncertainty about which post-Vatican II saints are really saints — including Sr. Faustina.

  9. I suspect that the issues a lot of Trads have with it can be summed up by “Copyright Infringement.” That this devotion is done with a Rosary doesn’t sit well with them. The first time someone came across this devotion, one might’ve heard: “Wait a minute, that’s a Rosary. What are you praying with it?” And from there you get all the issues Traditional Catholics have voiced over the decades.
    It would be like someone opening up a restaurant chain called: “Tennessee Fried Chicken” Very quickly lawyers from another famous restaurant chain will make you go out of business. If the Divine Mercy Chaplet were it’s own Chaplet, and not on the Rosary, I think a lot of suspicions and criticisms it gets would never have occurred in the first place.
    I own a Seven Sorrow Rosary, and a St. Michael Chaplet, both of which have different numbers of beads, and won’t be mistaken for the Rosary itself, the Seven Sorrows Rosary would require counting up the number of beads to figure out something was different about it. (I got them from Rugged Rosaries, a great company, which has also done custom work for me with a Sacred Heart Chaplet, just singing their praises.) Those two Chaplets never got the same kind of criticisms that the Divine Mercy Chaplet gets because they aren’t on a Rosary itself, they’re different.
    I’m not against the Divine Mercy Chaplet in the slightest myself, I can just understand where some of the uneasiness towards it comes from. I also do think that maybe it has “eclipsed” The Rosary in many Catholic Parishes which I don’t think was ever the intention, but like all eclipses the sun will come back into view.
    All that being said, I can’t really complain about people using The Rosary for the Divine Mercy Chaplet, as I also own a metal 15 Decade Rosary from Rugged Rosaries that I carry with me always, and that I’ve added a metal Byzantine Crucifix (I think it looks good) to it and I use that Rosary to pray The Jesus Prayer in Latin when I’m in the mood.

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