When Jesus appeared to Saint Faustina Kowalska, He revealed to her the devotions to Divine Mercy that He wanted incorporated into the Church’s spirituality. These included the Image of Divine Mercy, the Chaplet of Divine Mercy, the Hour of Mercy, and Divine Mercy Sunday.

Divine Mercy Sunday was to be on the Second Sunday of Easter, by Jesus’ own request. This was fitting, as the Gospel for that day was the institution of the Sacrament of Reconciliation, the Sacrament of Mercy. It told of Jesus’ appearance to the Apostles on that first Easter Sunday, when He breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit. Whose sins you forgive are forgiven them, and whose sins you retain are retained.”

Jesus promised that an “Ocean of God’s Mercy” would be opened on that day for even the most hardened sinner who turned to God for forgiveness. 

There is a plenary indulgence attached to Divine Mercy Sunday. A plenary indulgence means that all punishment, in this life and in the next, is removed from the penitent. That means that any time in purgatory, because of previous sins committed, is absolved. 

The conditions for receiving the plenary indulgence are as follows. You must:

  1. Be in a state of grace.
  2. Have the interior disposition of complete detachment from sin, even venial sin.
  3. Receive the Holy Eucharist.
  4. Go to confession on that day, or within 20 days before or after Divine Mercy Sunday.
  5. Say prayers for the intentions of the Holy Father (a Hail Mary and an Our Father suffice).

Indulgences can be applied to oneself or to someone in Purgatory, but not for someone else living, as they can seek the indulgence for themselves.

There will be Divine Mercy services at the Cathedral this afternoon. Confessions will follow the Masses, with special prayers at 3 pm, the Hour of Mercy.

I hope that some of you will take part in the Divine Mercy prayers.
–Fr. Mike Comer