Archive News

This quotation will be the theme of the virtual meeting to be held on December 12-13 this year, organized by priests from the Congregation of the Oratory of Saint Philip Neri in Argentina. It will be attended by eight sisters from the Congregation of Our Lady of Mercy. The project of this event was born in the time of acute economic, social and spiritual crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic in Argentina (several months of radical quarantine) and the entire South America. Conferences concerning God’s mercy and its meaning in our time will be delivered by Fr. Germán Saksonoff, head of the Center for Spirituality of St. Faustina in Argentina and the editor-in-chief of La Hora de la Misericordia, Eduardo Arnau, the founder of the Cristo Hoy Catholic weekly magazine, and Fr. Mauro Carlorosi, author of Divine Mercy Preparing the World. Conferences on the mystery and worship of Divine Mercy in the forms provided by Sister Faustina in the context of the pandemic, the life of the Apostle of Divine Mercy and the Faustinum Association continuing her mission, will be delivered by Sisters of the Congregation of Our Lady of Mercy from the Krakow-Łagiewniki Shrine (Sr. Miriam, Sr. M. Teresa, Sr. Clareta, Sr. Emanuela, Sr. Eliana, Sr. Faustia, and Sr. Maria Faustyna) and Washington, DC community (Sr. Gaudia). The program of the two-day event, to be conducted in Spanish, will also involve prayer at the Hour of Mercy and the Chaplet, Adoration of Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament, and presentations about the life of St. Faustina in Głogowiec, Plock, Warsaw and Krakow. To learn more and join the event, click http://www.hablaalmundo.com

The Archdiocesan Museum in Tarnów has prepared an exhibition devoted to Fr. Joseph Andrasz, S.J., the Krakow confessor and spiritual director of St. Faustina, who became involved in the mission of proclaiming the message of Mercy after her death. Under his guidance, the painting of Merciful Jesus was created by Adolf Hyła, and is now famous for many graces in the Łagiewniki Shrine. On his initiative, immediately after World War II, memories of Sister Faustina were collected and a booklet titled Divine Mercy, we trust in You, popularizing the devotion to Divine Mercy in the forms St. Faustina provided was published. It has been translated into many languages and has contributed greatly to the popularization in many countries. The exhibition will present memorabilia connected with Father Andrasz – manuscripts, photographs and scientific publications, translations of many mystics and theologians of spirituality. There are also vestments with the image of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, the Jesuit religious habit, a breviary, rosary and walking stick which Fr. Andrasz used near the end of his life. The exhibition will be open until January 20, 2021.

The Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy would like to warn everyone againts buying counterfeit relics of St. Faustina which have appeared online, e.g. on :  https://www.catawiki.com/l/42181927-reliquary-metal-late-20th-century. The Congregation of the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy is the sole custodian of the relics of St. Faustina. Relics of the first and second degree are donated to parish churches or chapels which proclaim the message of God’s Mercy and practice the devotion to the Divine Mercy. Relics of the third degree (the canvas on which the bones of St. Faustina used to be deposited) are available in laminated pictures, medallions and rosaries are designed for the faithful who practice individual devotion.

On December 5-8, at the parish of the Visitation in Elmhurst, one of the suburbs of Chicago, Sr. Gaudia and Sr. Grace from the DC community of the Congregation of Our Lady of Mercy will lead an Advent retreat on Divine Mercy with the theme Hope Restored. The motto of the event will be the words of St. John Paul II uttered at the Shrine of Divine Mercy in Krakow-Łagiewniki: ‘How greatly today’s world needs God’s mercy. … You have to communicate the fire of mercy to the world.’ He said this about the message of Mercy to the world provided by St. Faustina and expressed his desire that this message is ‘made known to all the inhabitants of the earth and fills their hearts with hope.’ This is the goal of the Advent retreat in Chicago.

ZAEX has published Memoirs of Saint Faustina in Slovak translation made by Sisters of the Congregation of Our Lady of Mercy under the title Spomienky na sv. Faustínu. The book includes accounts by 96 people who witnessed the life of Sister Faustina. We can learn how they remembered the Apostle of Divine Mercy’s looks and temperament, and how she was perceived by those around her. The speakers do not hide their affection or dislike of the Saint. The first edition of this collection of memories was published in 2013 by the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy’s publishing body, Misericordia. In the book’s review, Fr. Prof. Stanisław Ziemiański, S.J., wrote: Memoirs offer a fascinating read. Vividly describing the everyday life of the future saint, they allow the reader to take an unforgettable journey through time and have an extraordinary encounter with the Divine Mercy Advocate. The book had already been published in French, Spanish and Croatian translations as well.

On December 8th, at the Shrine of Divine Mercy in Krakow-Łagiewniki, Mass will be celebrated at 5 pm in the intentions of all the sponsors, donors and contributors of the media works carried out by the Congregation of the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy, and especially those who support the Chaplet for the Dying at  www.faustyna.pl . Thanks to this support each year we are helping about twenty thousand dying people. Hundreds of thousands of individuals around the world can make a virtual pilgrimage to the Shrine of Łagiewniki and connect in prayer next to the miracle-famous image of Merciful Jesus and the tomb of St. Faustina. Sisters from the Congregation of Our Lady of Mercy pray daily for the donors and benefactors who support the work, but this particular Eucharist will be a special gift of gratitude. You can join this celebration via the live video broadcast at faustyna.pl, and in the Faustyna.pl application.

On December 8, as on every eighth day of the month, the community of the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy in Gdansk, Częstochowa, Kalisz and Kiekrz will support married couples praying for offspring. 530 of them are already expecting children, with many more already enjoying parenthood. Intentions asking for prayer for this purpose (names of married couples) can be sent by email at: kontakt@modlitwaopotomstwo.pl or through the fanpage: www.modlitwaopotomstwo.pl.

The community of people praying for children led by Fr. Andrzej Wiecki and sisters of the Gdańsk community of the Congregation of Our Lady of Mercy cordially invite married couples trying to conceive to Adoration of Merciful Jesus with a prayer for healing, which will take place on 8 December at 7.30 pm at the shrine of the Pregnant Holy Mother in Matemblewo. Live stream: www.facebook.com/modlitwaopotomstwo 

On December 8th,  the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary, in the convent of the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy in Rabka, a ceremony of admission to postulate will be held for 4 candidates (3 Belarusian and Polish). After the religious ceremonies, Holy Mass will be celebrated by Fr. Rafał Radwański in the chapel of the convent in the intention of the postulants.

The period of postulancy is the first trial in religious life. It is intended, first of all, to gradually introduce new sisters into the life of the Congregation, and also to complement and extend their religious knowledge, to shape the culture of coexistence with others according to the etiquette, to develop the practice of natural virtues and to facilitate a closer familiarization with the life and apostolic mission of the Congregation. This is achieved through attending lectures  and study, but also through prayer and work in the community of sisters.

On November 29, spiritual preparations for the celebration of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary will begin in all the houses of the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy. There is to be a communal novena consisting of antiphons and the Litany of Loreto. In addition the sisters will be marking the Holy Day with an annual gift to the Mother of Mercy. Over and above the obligatory prayer in the convents' chapels and her spiritual exercise, Saint Faustina used to make a novena which consisted in saying 1,000 „Hail Marys” each day. She admitted: Where there’s a will, there’s a way. Apart from recreation, I have only prayed and worked. I have not said a single unnecessary word during these days. Although I must admit that such a matter requires a good deal of attention and effort, nothing is too much when it comes to honoring the Immaculate Virgin (Diary, 1413). You yourselves can also take part in the prayer online, thanks to our live transmissions from the Shrine of Divine Mercy in Krakow-Łagiewniki.

Sister Faustina would begin every Advent with Virgin Mary. Before the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, she would practice a novena with the whole Congregation, and in addition to that, she would always try to offer something more to the Mother of God (e.g. a novena of a thousand Hail Marys). She considered mercy that Mary experienced as a gift of her immaculate conception and the fullness of grace guaranteed to her by Archangel Gabriel, and the gift of Divine motherhood. The one who was chosen to become the Mother of the Son of God knows best how to experience the period of awaiting the coming of Jesus. She advised Sister Faustina: “try to make yourself meek and humble, so that Jesus, Who dwells perpetually in your heart, may rest. Adore Him in your heart, do not leave your interior” (Diary, 785). This may also be our decision for this Advent week to prepare our hearts for God’s ever more complete presence therein.

Such is the theme of the virtual conference organised every Friday in the National Shrine of the Divine Mercy in the Philippines.  The conference is under the patronage of the National Coordinator of the Divine Mercy in the Philippines, Bishop Ruperto C. Santos and Shrine Rector, Fr. Propero Tenorio.  To this event, the Association of the Apostles of Divine Mercy “Faustinum” has been invited to participate. Sr. M. Teresa de la Fuente from the convent of the Congregation of the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy at the Shrine of Divine Mercy in Krakow-Łagiewniki shall give the talk on the December 4th episode of this series.  The conference topic are the words taken from St. Faustina’s Diary:  “Patience, prayer and silence – these are the things that fortify the soul” (Dairy 944). The conference will be aired through the Facebook page of the National Shrine and Parish of the Divine Mercy in the Philippines. See link below:
https://www.facebook.com/NSPDMofficial/videos/1342780469404981/?vh=e&d=n

November 30 is the 40th anniversary of the signing of the Dives in misericordia Encyclical by John Paul II. This is the first papal document in the history of the Church entirely devoted to the mystery of divine and human mercy. Although John Paul II never mentioned St. Faustina in this document, nor did he directly refer to her spiritual legacy, he did enclose the main message from her Diary therein. This message is about recalling the biblical truth of God’s merciful love for man and proclaiming it to the modern world with a new power through the witness of life, deeds, word and prayer. The identity of this message in both works is striking not only in the way they show the mystery of Divine Mercy as the greatest attribute of the Trinity, but also how they look at the concept of mercy. Both Saints from Cracow show the beauty and richness of properly understood mercy. Moreover, in both works we read about the same tasks that arise from the knowledge and experience of God’s merciful love. These are: proclaiming the mystery of Divine Mercy, doing mercy and asking for Divine Mercy.

The Dives in misericordia encyclical and the Diary, although they are generically different works, actually contain the same message: the mystery of God’s mercy, which is at the core of the Bible and the experience of every human being. These two works show what Divine Mercy is in a complementary way, speaking about how incomprehensible God’s greatness and power of action is in the lives of people and the world. Thanks to these documents, from the point of view of theology and mystical experience, the Church of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries could better learn and live this truth revealed in the Bible.

Advent is approaching, Sister Faustina wrote in her Diary. I want to prepare my heart for the coming of the Lord Jesus by silence and recollection of spirit, uniting myself with the Most Holy Mother and faithfully imitating Her virtue of silence, by which She found pleasure in the eyes of God Himself.  I trust that, by Her side, I will persevere in this resolution (Diary, 1398). This year, the first Sunday of Advent falls on 29th of November. Liturgically, Advent and the new year in the liturgy of the Church begins with vespers on November 28th. It constitutes a time of joyful anticipation of Christmas, spiritual preparation for this holiday and for the second coming of Christ on Earth, in addition to building our sensitivity to His everyday coming to us here and now, as St. Faustina did, through exercise in silence and recollection of spirit. The joy of experiencing the mystery of faith which tells us of the birth of the Son of God in human flesh, Mercy Incarnate, depends on this expectation and spiritual preparation.

 

In the time of the pandemic which affects all areas of our lives, the Congregation of the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy is all the more grateful to all benefactors and donors for their support for our apostolic work to benefit thousands of online visitors and people who are dying and in desperate need of prayerful support. Please accept our gratitude for the support of the Chaplet for the Dying and the live video broadcasting from the Shrine of Divine Mercy, and last but not least, our website, www.saint-faustina.org. Your generosity shows God’s mercy going out into the world through people. The Sisters recommend all donors and benefactors in their daily prayers, asking for God’s blessings and grace which they need. With all this in mind, let Divine Mercy be praised!

On November 23, another Monday’s meeting will be held at the Shrine of Divine Mercy in Krakow-Łagiewniki, dedicated to contemplating the Catechism of the Catholic Church and prayer at the miracle-famous Divine Mercy image and the tomb of St. Faustina for the recovery of faith in the Eucharistic presence of Jesus, and for priests. At 6.45 pm, Fr. Janusz Kościelniak will lead a short meditation based on the articles of the Catechism of the Catholic Church (88-95).  The focal point of the program will be the encounter with Jesus in the Eucharist and adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, with individual blessing. Those who cannot physically come to Łagiewniki, can connect to the on-line broadcast at www.faustyna.pl.

Every evening in November, the Rosary for the Dead is prayed in the chapel with the image of the Merciful Jesus and the tomb of St. Faustina at the Shrine in Krakow-Łagiewniki, as well as in all other chapels of the Congregation. Praying the Rosary with others in a church, a public chapel, with your family, or in a religious community or pious organization can gain you a plenary indulgence under the usual conditions. In Poland a plenary indulgence can also be obtained by reciting the Chaplet of Divine Mercy. Prayer is a great good that those still living on Earth can offer to those who have already departed from it and are expecting our aid, as they cannot help themselves anymore. Mercy rendered to the dead, like any good done to others, is also the wealth of those who practice it.

People from many countries of the world participating in the work of the Perpetual Chaplet of Divine Mercy are praying not only in their own intentions, but also asking for “mercy on us and the whole world”. Specific intention for November: for the coronavirus pandemic to end, for the necessary graces for the sick, the dying and the medical personnel, as well as for the joy of heaven for the deceased.

The work of Perpetual Chaplet is a response to the request of Jesus to constantly implore for mercy “for us and the whole world”. The work has been operated by the Congregation of the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy at: www.faustyna.pl since 2011. Anyone can participate in it by filling out a short form and declare to say the Chaplet of Divine Mercy, which Jesus dictated to St. Faustinaat least once.

 

November is a special month of acting out of mercy towards the dead, whose souls are maturing in Purgatory to fully experience love. Saint Faustina visited that place in her mystical experiences and described it in the Diary: … I saw my Guardian Angel, who ordered me to follow him. In a moment I was in a misty place full of fire in which there was a great crowd of suffering souls. They were praying fervently, but to no avail, for themselves; only we can come to their aid. The flames which were burning them did not touch me at all. My Guardian Angel did not leave me for an instant. I asked these souls what their greatest suffering was. They answered me in one voice that their greatest torment was longing for God. I saw Our Lady visiting the souls in Purgatory. The souls call her ‘The Star of the Sea’. She brings them refreshment. I wanted to talk with them some more, but my Guardian Angel beckoned me to leave. We went out of that prison of suffering. [I heard and interior voice] which said, My mercy does not want this, but justice demands it (Diary, 20).

In the time of the coronavirus pandemic, masks have become a daily use item. We wear them obligatorily regardless of what outfit we put on. In public space you can see different patterns, shapes and colors of the masks. There are also masks with a trademark or message. And this is what you can now also find at our online Misericordia store of the Łagiewniki Shrine of Divine Mercy. It is easy to guess that these masks come with the message “Jesus, I trust in You!”. These words express not only the essence of the message of Mercy which Jesus entrusted to St. Faustina to proclaim to the whole world, but they are also an effective prayer if accompanied by the fulfillment of the will of God. St. John Paul II confessed: “No words more eloquent can be found than this simple phrase given by Sister Faustina. Jesus, I trust in You!

On November 15th at the Shrine of Divine Mercy in Krakow-Łagiewniki, the 4nd anniversary of the proclamation of the Jubilee Act of acceptance of Christ as King and Lord will be celebrated. At 12.00 am there will be held a solemn Eucharistic celebration presided by Bishop Stanisław Jamrozek. Live broadcast: www.milosierdzie.pl.

The Shrine in Łagiewniki has one of Krakow’s oldest cemeteries. It is a religious cemetery established in the late 19th century in the back of the former garden of the Congregation of the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy. Here lie the remains of sisters, chaplains, pupils and other persons connected with the convent in Łagiewniki. Also the body of St. Faustina used to be buried here for 28 years. Another Sister who was interred here is Sr. Faustina’s Superior General, Mother Michael Moraczewska. Others include Sr. Kaliksta Piekarczyk who devoted her life for the intention of saving Krakow during World War II, Mother Ksawera Olszamowska who offered hers for the intention of establishment of the Feast of Divine Mercy in the Church and the message of Mercy, along with many sisters who offered up their daily lives for different intentions. The Convent’s cemetery is right outside the southern wall of the basilica in the Łagiewniki Shrine and is often visited by pilgrims. Near the eastern wall of the basilica, there is a military cemetery from the time of WWI. No individual graves are found here. Instead, there is a large cross and an obelisk with a plaque which says that 266 soldiers from 15 European countries are buried in this place. During the Great War, part of the Congregation’s garden was converted into a large military hospital for over 1,000 patients. It had several temporary wards, where soldiers of different nationalities were treated for typhoid fever, cholera, dysentery, pox and scarlet fever – in other words, infectious diseases. Some of the soldiers who could not be saved died in this hospital, which was why they were buried in the cemetery outside the Convent’s wall.

Sister Faustina put this question to her deceased sisters while walking by the convent’s cemetery in Krakow-Łagiewniki. She received the following answer: We are happy in the measure that we have fulfilled God’s will (Diary, 515 and 518). Afterwards, the Saint meditated at length on how she was fulfilling the will of God and how she was using the time of her earthly life. This is something to think about when we visit the graves of our loved ones at this time of the year. Every cemetery contains unusual life stories of many people and at the same time it reminds us of the transience of human life, provoking thoughts on its meaning and purpose. Through the life of St. Faustina and her mystical experience, God, who wants happiness for every human being in both this and eternal life, reminds us in a powerful way where happiness lies and how to achieve it.

In the octave of All Saints’ celebrations, from 1-8 November, Sisters from the convent of the Congregation of Our Lady of Mercy at the Shrine of Divine Mercy in Kraków-Łagiewniki will take part in a great prayer action for unborn children. Through the hands of Mary, as the Organizers write, we want to receive them, hug them, embrace them, maybe even give them a name. We will ask forgiveness from those children who were not allowed to be born. The rosary prayer for this purpose will take place on weekdays at 7pm and on Sundays at 6.30 pm. Brief reflections for each day of the prayers taken from the writings of saints, blessed ones and servants of God, including St. by John Paul II and St. Faustina will be available. For more information and to join, please visit www.rozaniecdogranic.pl.

On November 8, as on every eighth day of the month, the community of the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy in Gdansk, Częstochowa, Kalisz and Kiekrz will support married couples praying for offspring. 515 of them are already expecting children, with many more already enjoying parenthood. Intentions asking for prayer for this purpose (names of married couples) can be sent by email at: kontakt@modlitwaopotomstwo.pl or through the fanpage: www.modlitwaopotomstwo.pl.

The “Woman is Divine” community and Fr. Andrzej Wiecki – its spiritual director and sisters of the Gdańsk community of the Congregation of Our Lady of Mercy cordially invite married couples trying to conceive to Adoration of Merciful Jesus with a prayer for healing, which will take place on 8 November at 7.30 pm at the shrine of the Pregnant Holy Mother in Matemblewo. Live stream: www.facebook.com/modlitwaopotomstwo 

The Esperanza project, together with the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy in Camaguey, participate in the international days of prayer for life. Cuba is taking part in 40 days of prayer and fasting offered for the intention of ending abortion worldwide for the first time in history along with fifty other countries. The action will last until November 1st.

The first day of November is celebrated in the Congregation of the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy as the day when the Church pays homage to all the Saints and, additionally, as the anniversary of the establishment of the Congregation in Poland. On this day, in 1862,  Archbishop Zygmunt Szczęsny Feliński consecrated the first chapel and House of Mercy in Warsaw at ul. Żytnia. On this day, the sisters refer especially to the early history of their Congregation. They commemorate its founder, Countess Teresa Ewa Potocka nee Sułkowska, who accepted the invitation of Archbishop Szczęsny Feliński and came to Warsaw to aid “fallen” women in returning to a life of dignity, and to establish a house for them inspired by the House of Mercy in Laval (France), which became the model for their apostolic work and religious life. Together with the Church, the sisters also revere all those who have achieved the goal of their lives: eternal union with God. These saints also include the Divine Mercy apostle, Sr. Faustina Kowalska, raised to the altars as a saint and known all over the world. Saint Faustina was the spiritual co-founder of the Congregation, along with St. Archbishop Zygmunt Szczęsny Feliński and the deceased sisters, pupils and Divine Mercy apostles who were members of the association “Faustinum” and who participated in the mission of the Congregation by making the merciful love of God present in the world through their lives, deeds, words and prayers. The sisters in all the convents their gratitude for the Congregation’s past, entrusting its present and future to God’s mercy, so that all Divine plans for it are fulfilled.

On the Feast of All Saints, the Church honors those raised to the altars, known by name and biography, but also all the priests, other consecrated persons and lay faithful who have reached the goal of human life that is eternal union with God in love. There are more saints who live among us than there may seem to be. One piece of evidence for this is the history of the Congregation of the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy, which has been intertwined with the lives of many unusual people, in addition to St. Faustina Kowalska. Throughout the over 150-year-long existence and activity of the Congregation, some of these individuals were raised to the glory of the altars by the Church. They include Archbishop Zygmunt Szczęsny Feliński, who was a co-founder of the Congregation; Pope St. John Paul II, who visited Łagiewniki so often and has done so much for the mission of Mercy; Bl. Julian Nowowiejski, the Bishop who invited the sisters to Płock and who wrote the first history of the Congregation; Bl. Jan Balicki, who initiated the Congregation’s works in Przemyśl and served the sisters and their pupils for three years; Bl. Maria Karwowska, who spent her formation period in the Łagiewniki convent and Bl. Michael Sopoćko, the Vilnius confessor of the convent on the Antokol and spiritual director of St. Faustina. The following are included as candidates for sainthood: the fathers who served as confessors to the convent in Krakow-Łagiewniki: the servant of God Fr. Wojciech Baudiss, S.J.; Fr. Bernard Łubieński (Redemptorist); Fr. Stanisław Bednarski, S.J.; Fr. Stanisław Podoleński, S.J.; Fr. Marian Morawski, S.J.; Fr. Józef Cyrek, S.J.; or the servant of God Fr. Jacek Woroniecki, O.P., the author of The Mystery of Divine Mercy, which was copied from the original manuscript by the sisters in Łagiewniki. This list of saints, blessed and servants of the Lord is much longer, particularly because it can include individuals who did not cooperate with the Congregation permanently, but had a different type of relationship with it. Today, too, saints are among us. They are the people fascinated by the merciful love of Jesus, who participate in His life and His mission to reveal the mystery of Divine Mercy to the world.

Every day at 3 pm Eastern Time, Sisters of the Washington community of the Congregation of Our Lady of Mercy lead prayer at the Hour of Mercy and Chaplet of Divine Mercy in English. The prayer is broadcast live from the John Paul II National Shrine in Washington, D.C. The short prayer aimed at contemplating the Mercy of God revealed in the Passion of Jesus, and then the Chaplet of Divine Mercy are available at the Shrine’s YouTube channel:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCFTeh0aaqAA3-nAYAI7K6zA and Facebook page:

https://www.facebook.com/JP2Shrine/?hc_ref=ARQlMmu9QaQW35VsRG1VafZ-uooOjV-lQxuhvvuGpxIrd3X1oLDaB4fuLHa0JurMBXE&fref=nf

Both the Chaplet and the prayer at the Hour of Mercy are privileged forms of Divine Mercy veneration which Jesus Himself provided to St. Faustina and with which He associated great promises, under the conditions of practicing the attitude of trust in God, that is, fulfilling His will and acting out of mercy toward our neighbors.

Find out more about the Chaplet and prayer at the Hour of Mercy