Poland Gives Thanks to God for Gift of Sr Faustina

90th Anniversary of First Apparition

poland sr faustina
Office for Foreign Communications of the Polish Episcopal Conference

Poland is giving thanks to the gift of Sr Faustina. The 90th anniversary of the first apparition of Jesus to Sister Faustyna was celebrated with a solemn liturgical celebration presided over by Msgr. Jan Romeo Pawłowski, Secretary of the Secretariat of State for Relations with Pontifical Representations.

“Today, after 90 years, the prayer ‘Jesus I trust in you!’ it is translated into hundreds of languages and is repeated millions of times. We can dare to say that this prayer completes the ‘Our Father’ prayer, also established by Jesus himself to teach his disciples how to turn to the Father, while the one taught to Sr. Faustyna tells us how to turn to the Merciful Son “- declared Mons Pawłowski during the celebration.

“Pope Francis reminded us that we must all be apostles of Divine Mercy. Before leaving to come here, I notified the Holy Father who told me: ‘Pray for me and make people pray for me. Tell them that I deeply believe in divine mercy ‘”- confided the prelate.

The President of the Polish Republic, Andrzej Duda, unable to be present in person at the Eucharistic celebration, sent a letter in which we read, among other things, “The message they left (Pope John Paul II and Sister Faustina) has a universal dimension, that of reaching the hearts of people of goodwill, regardless of their religion and worldview. And I am convinced that, especially in modern times, humanity needs the solidarity and hope that resonate so strongly in the writings of both of our saints.

Sr. Faustyna (1905-1938) was called by Jesus to a special mission: that of proclaiming His Divine Mercy to the world, of spreading the image of Jesus as it appeared to her and with the words “Jesus I trust in you!”, establish the feast of Divine Mercy on the first Sunday after Easter and the recitation of the chaplet of Divine Mercy.

On the occasion of the 90th anniversary of the first apparition of Jesus to Sister Faustyna, Pope Francis expressed his closeness with a letter addressed to the Bishop of Plock, in whose diocese one of the monasteries is located, Fr Sr. Faustyna lived and spoke about it during the Angelus on Sunday 21 February. In the letter, the Holy Father recalled the words of Jesus written by the Saint in the “Diary”: “Humanity will not know peace until it turns to the source of my mercy”.

“So I encourage you, let’s turn to this Source. We ask Christ for the gift of mercy. We let it envelop and penetrate us. We have the courage to return to Jesus to encounter his love and mercy in the sacraments. We feel his closeness, his tenderness, and then we too will be more capable of mercy, patience, forgiveness, and love ”- the Pope continued.

Pope Francis had gone to pray at the tomb of the Saint in 2016 on the occasion of the World Youth Day which was held in Krakow.

St. John Paul II deserves the credit for having made the Divine Mercy known to the world. He was a great devotee of Divine Mercy and from an early age, he often went to the chapel of the convent of the Congregation of the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy in Krakow-Łagiewniki, where the image of Merciful Jesus was venerated.

With the appointment of Karol Wojtyła as Archbishop of Krakow, the cult of Divine Mercy spread and, in 1965 the Archbishop promoted the diocesan phase of the beatification process of Sr. Faustyna which ended positively in 1967. The process was then transferred to the Congregation for the Causes of Saints in 1968.

In 1978 Karol Wojtyla became Pope John Paul II and proclaimed God’s Mercy as one of the essential elements for human salvation. In Łagiewniki the Holy Father entrusted himself, the Church, and the whole world to the mercy of God.

In 1980, John Paul II published the encyclical “Dives in misericordia” on God’s mercy. “It reminds us that God’s willingness to receive prodigal children is inexhaustible and can only be limited by human obstinacy and lack of penance “.

John Paul II beatified Sister Faustyna in 1993 and canonized her in 2000, the year of the Great Jubilee. In the same year 2000, the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments instituted the Feast of Divine Mercy, binding in the whole universal Church on the first Sunday after Easter.

On August 17, 2002, John Paul II entrusted the world to Divine Mercy.

John Paul II died after the first Vespers of Divine Mercy Sunday in 2005.

One of the fruits of the world’s consecration to Divine Mercy in Krakow was the decision to build a Shrine of Divine Mercy in Vilnius, the city where Sister Faustina had most of her apparitions.

The mission of Sister Faustyna is described in the “Diary”, written by the desire of Jesus and on the recommendation of his spiritual fathers, in which she faithfully noted all that Jesus revealed to her. She died consumed by tuberculosis at the age of 33. The fame of the sanctity of his life grew together with the spread of the cult of Divine Mercy in the wake of the graces obtained through his intercession. The relics of Sister Faustina are found in the sanctuary of divine mercy in Krakow.

Every year – before the outbreak of the pandemic – about 2.5 million pilgrims from Poland and all continents arrived at the Shrine of Divine Mercy in Kraków Łagiewniki. During the 2016 World Youth Day in Krakow, about 1.5 million young pilgrims from 182 countries around the world visited the Shrine.

 – Office for Foreign Communications of the Polish Episcopal Conference