Pray the Divine Mercy Novena this Easter

with this free eBook, Divine Mercy Novena.

In preparation for this Feast of Divine Mercy, Our Lord asked that the faithful pray a novena, beginning on Good Friday. Each day of the novena has a different intention that is dear to the Heart of Jesus, including all sinners, priests and Religious, souls of children, those in Purgatory, and finally lukewarm souls.

As we meditate on each of these prayers throughout the nine days, we will come to a better understanding of Our Lord and His love for mankind, the Divine Mercy that He pours out on each one of us.

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What is the meaning of Divine Mercy Sunday? (continued from above)

During the course of Jesus’ revelations to Saint Faustina on the Divine Mercy He asked on numerous occasions that a feast day be dedicated to the Divine Mercy and that this feast be celebrated on the Sunday after Easter. The liturgical texts of that day, the 2nd Sunday of Easter, concern the institution of the Sacrament of Penance, the Tribunal of the Divine Mercy, and are thus already suited to the request of Our Lord. This Feast, which had already been granted to the nation of Poland and been celebrated within Vatican City, was granted to the Universal Church by Pope John Paul II on the occasion of the canonization of Sr. Faustina on 30 April 2000. In a decree dated 23 May 2000, the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments stated that “throughout the world the Second Sunday of Easter will receive the name Divine Mercy Sunday, a perennial invitation to the Christian world to face, with confidence in divine benevolence, the difficulties and trials that mankind will experience in the years to come.”

Concerning the Feast of Mercy, Jesus said:

Whoever approaches the Fountain of Life on this day will be granted complete forgiveness of sins and punishment. (Diary, 300)

I want the image solemnly blessed on the first Sunday after Easter, and I want it to be venerated publicly so that every soul may know about it. (Diary, 341)

This Feast emerged from the very depths of My mercy, and it is confirmed in the vast depths of my tender mercies. (Diary, 420)

“Yes, the first Sunday after Easter is the Feast of Mercy, but there must also be deeds of mercy, which are to arise out of love for Me. You are to show mercy to our neighbors always and everywhere. You must not shrink from this or try to absolve yourself from it.” (Diary, 742)

When should the Divine Mercy be prayed?

Just as the Image can serve as a reminder of the “ocean of Divine Mercy,” as well as its price, so can the daily remembrance of the Divine Mercy at the hour of Christ’s death.

Jesus asked Saint Faustina, and through her us, to celebrate the Hour of Great Mercy, promising tremendous graces for those who do so, both for themselves and for others.

At three o’clock, implore My mercy, especially for sinners; and, if only for a brief moment, immerse yourself in My Passion, particularly in My abandonment at the moment of agony. This is the hour of great mercy ... In this hour I will refuse nothing to the soul that makes a request of Me in virtue of My Passion. (Diary, 1320)

Why is 3 o’clock so important for practicing a devotion to Divine Mercy?

In the Gospels we are told that Jesus died at the ninth hour (cf. Mt. 27:46-50) on the Day of Preparation before Passover (cf. Mt. 27:62, John 19:14), which was also a Sabbath that year (cf. John 19:31). This sets the time of His Death as the ninth hour, (according to Sun time), or 3 p.m., on a Friday (since the Jewish Sabbath is Saturday). This is the Hour of Great Mercy, and the time which under the old covenant the Passover Lamb was slaughtered.

Can the Divine Mercy prayer be said at any time?

While 3:00 p.m. is the best time to pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet, the faithful can say this prayer any time of day and on any day of the week.

“I want to grant complete pardon to the souls that will go to Confession and receive Holy Communion on the Feast of My mercy.” (Diary, 1109)

What are the promises of the Divine Mercy Chaplet?

Among the requests made by Our Lord of St. Faustina was the Divine Mercy Chaplet, promising,

“The souls that say this chaplet will be embraced by My mercy during their lifetime and especially at the hour of their death.”

A chaplet is a devotional form which uses beads to count out the prayers as they are being prayed. The Marian Rosary is the most famous example. Many chaplets, including this one, simply use the rosary beads for this purpose.

What happens when you pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet?

Jesus told St. Faustina the following:

Say unceasingly the Chaplet that I have taught you. Whoever will recite it, they will receive great mercy at the hour of death. Priests will recommend it to sinners as their last hope of salvation. Even if there were a sinner most hardened, if he were to recite this chaplet only once, he would receive grace from My infinite mercy. (Diary, 687)

Why is the Divine Mercy Chaplet so powerful?

Jesus’ Mercy is incomparable. He wants—more than anything—for us to come to Him, to live with Him in Heaven. His Love, manifested on the Cross, is the reason that the Chaplet is so powerful.

What is the difference between the Rosary and the Divine Mercy Chaplet?

These devotions, both prayed on Rosary beads, are important to Catholics. The Holy Rosary meditates on different events from the life of Christ and His Mother; whereas, the Divine Mercy Chaplet focuses on Jesus’ Sacrifice and the depth of the Divine Mercy.

How do you recite the Divine Mercy Chaplet?

Using the Marian Rosary,

  1. Begin with the Sign of the Cross on the Crucifix, then on the group of three beads, the Our Father, the Hail Mary and the Apostles’ Creed.

On the beads of the five decades, say the following:

  1. On the Our Father beads,
    Eternal Father, I offer You the Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity of Your dearly beloved Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ, in atonement for our sins and those of the whole world.
  2. On the ten Hail Mary Beads,
    For the sake of His sorrowful Passion, have mercy on us and on the whole world.

Repeat step 2 and 3 for all five decades.

  1. Conclude with (three times):
    Holy God, Holy Mighty One, Holy Immortal One, have mercy on us and on the whole world.

There are optional prayers for the Three O’clock Hour that may be added and are found in devotional books on the Divine Mercy.

What does the Divine Mercy prayer mean?

Here are the three main prayers of the Divine Mercy Chaplet:

Eternal Father, I offer You the Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity of Your dearly beloved Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ, in atonement for our sins and those of the whole world.

For the sake of His sorrowful Passion, have mercy on us and on the whole world.

Holy God, Holy Mighty One, Holy Immortal One, have mercy on us and on the whole world.

With all three of these prayers, we are admitting to God that we are all unworthy. It is only through Jesus’ sacrifice, only through God’s power, only through His Mercy that we can ask for anything. Do we offer ourselves? No, we offer Jesus. Do we ask for our “sake”? No, we say “for the sake of His sorrowful Passion”? Through this prayer, we are asking God to grant us our intentions due to His Greatness.

When should I start the Divine Mercy Novena?

Jesus asked that the Feast of the Divine Mercy be preceded by a Novena to the Divine Mercy which would begin on Good Friday. He gave St. Faustina an intention to pray for on each day of the Novena, saving for the last day the most difficult intention of all, the lukewarm and indifferent of whom He said:

“These souls cause Me more suffering than any others; it was from such souls that My soul felt the most revulsion in the Garden of Olives. It was on their account that I said: ‘My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass Me by.’ The last hope of salvation for them is to flee to My Mercy.”

In her diary, St. Faustina wrote that Jesus told her:

“On each day of the novena you will bring to My heart a different group of souls and you will immerse them in this ocean of My mercy ... On each day you will beg My Father, on the strength of My passion, for the graces for these souls.”

“Jesus: ‘My child, life on earth is a struggle indeed; a great struggle for my kingdom. But fear not, because you are not alone. I am always supporting you, so lean on Me as you struggle, fearing nothing. Take the vessel of trust and draw from the fountain of life – for yourself, but also for other souls, especially such as are distrustful of My goodness.’” (Diary, 1488)

What does the image of Divine Mercy mean?

In 1931, Our Lord asked St. Faustina to have an image painted of His Divine Mercy along with the words, “Jesus, I trust in You.” He said, “I desire that this image be venerated, first in your chapel, and [then] throughout the world.” (Diary, 47)

Jesus further added,

“I promise that the soul that will venerate this image will not perish. I also promise victory over (its) enemies already here on earth, especially at the hour of death. I Myself will defend it as My own glory.” (Diary, 48)

What do the rays of light shining from the Heart of Jesus represent?

In her Diary, St. Faustina said,

When on one occasion my confessor told me to ask the Lord Jesus the meaning of the two rays in the image, I answered, “Very well, I will ask the Lord.”

During prayer I heard these words within me: The two rays denote Blood and Water. The pale ray stands for the water that makes souls righteous. The red ray stands for the Blood which is the life of souls ...

These two rays issued forth from the very depths of My tender mercy when my agonized Heart was opened by a lance on the Cross. (Diary, 299)

Where is the original painting of the Divine Mercy?

The original painting is displayed at the Shrine of Divine Mercy in Vilnius, Lithuania, at the convent where St. Faustina was residing when Our Lord appeared to her under this form.

“All grace flows from mercy, and the last hour abounds with mercy for us. Let no one doubt concerning the goodness of God; even if a person’s sins were as dark as night, God’s mercy is stronger than our misery. One thing alone is necessary; that the sinner set ajar the door of his heart, be it ever so little, to let in a ray of God’s merciful grace, and then God will do the rest.” (Diary, 1507)

What does Divine Mercy mean?

Divine Mercy is the reaching down of God out of Love, through the Incarnation and Pascal Mystery, in order to restore us to Himself.

Eph. 2:4-7 But God, who is rich in mercy, out of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead through our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up with him, and made us sit with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.

Heb. 4:16 Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

In his Encyclical letter on the Eternal Father, Rich in Mercy, Pope John Paul II cites the Paschal Mystery as the greatest evidence of this attribute of God.

15 . . . It is this mystery which bears within itself the most complete revelation of mercy, that is, of that love which is more powerful than death, more powerful than sin and every evil, the love which lifts man up when he falls into the abyss and frees him from the greatest threats.

Speaking at the Divine Mercy Shrine in his native Krakow he would later say,

Those who sincerely say “Jesus, I trust in You” will find comfort in all their anxieties and fears. There is nothing more man needs than Divine Mercy – that love which is benevolent, which is compassionate, which raises man above his weakness to the infinite heights to the holiness of God. (Shrine of Divine Mercy in Krakow, Poland, on June 7, 1997)

What is the meaning of Mercy?

In its simplest form, mercy is compassion or forgiveness. The person in need may have brought it upon themselves, by sin, or human failures of one kind or another, but to be merciful is not to leave them in that state, as this is how God treats us if we turn to Him in our need.

What are the Promises of Divine Mercy?

Here are a few of the promises regarding Jesus’ Divine Mercy:

“I promise that the soul that will venerate this image (of Divine Mercy) will not perish. I also promise victory over (its) enemies already here on earth, especially at the hour of death. I Myself will defend it as My own glory.” (Diary, 48)

“Whoever will recite it will receive great mercy at the hour of death.” (Diary, 687)

“The souls that say this chaplet will be embraced by My mercy during their lifetime and especially at the hour of their death.” (Diary, 754)

“When this chaplet is said by the bedside of a dying person, God’s anger is placated, unfathomable mercy envelops the soul, and the very depths of My tender mercy are moved for the sake of the sorrowful Passion of My Son.” (Diary, 811)

“Souls who spread the honor of My mercy… at the hour of death I will not be a Judge for them, but the Merciful Savior.” (Diary, 1075)

“To priests who proclaim and extol My mercy, I will give wondrous power; I will anoint their words and touch the hearts of those to whom they will speak.” (Diary, 1521)

“Be apostles of Divine Mercy under the maternal and loving guidance of Mary.” - Pope St. John Paul II to the Marians, June 22, 1993

What is the meaning of God’s mercy?

The Catechism of the Catholic Church (paragraphs 1846-1848) teaches us,

The Gospel is the revelation in Jesus Christ of God’s mercy to sinners. The angel announced to Joseph: “You shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” The same is true of the Eucharist, the sacrament of redemption: “This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.”

“God created us without us: but he did not will to save us without us.” To receive his mercy, we must admit our faults. “If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just, and will forgive our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

As St. Paul affirms, “Where sin increased, grace abounded all the more.” But to do its work grace must uncover sin so as to convert our hearts and bestow on us “righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” Like a physician who probes the wound before treating it, God, by his Word and by his Spirit, casts a living light on sin:

Conversion requires convincing of sin; it includes the interior judgment of conscience, and this, being a proof of the action of the Spirit of truth in man’s inmost being, becomes at the same time the start of a new grant of grace and love: “Receive the Holy Spirit.” Thus in this “convincing concerning sin” we discover a double gift: the gift of the truth of conscience and the gift of the certainty of redemption. The Spirit of truth is the Consoler.

Is the Divine Mercy Devotion approved?

Yes, the Church has fully approved the Divine Mercy devotion. While the devotion has its origin in private revelation, and thus is not a matter of the Faith, the Divine Mercy itself is a doctrine of the Church and the particular forms of this devotion have received the highest possible approval. This includes the canonization of the mystic (affirming the certainty of her holiness, and thus the veracity of her claims) and the institutionalization of the devotion in the life of the Church, as the Feast of Divine Mercy and the Divine Mercy Indulgence.

Which Pope is known as Pope of Mercy?

Pope St. John Paul II is the great Mercy Pope. In 1981, he said,

Right from the beginning of my ministry in St. Peter’s See in Rome, I consider this message [of Divine Mercy] my special task. Providence has assigned it to me in the present situation of man, the Church and the world. It could be said that precisely this situation assigned that message to me as my task before God.

As Archbishop of Krakow before he was elected Pope, he had promoted the Cause for Canonization of Sr. Faustina, and sought to advance devotion to the Divine Mercy. During his pontificate he was able to realize these efforts, canonizing Sr. Faustina, as well as satisfy the requests of Our Lord. He died on April 2nd, 2005, on the eve of the Feast of the Divine Mercy.

“I am not only the Queen of Heaven, but also the Mother of Mercy.” - Our Lady (Diary, 330)

Have other Popes promoted the Divine Mercy?

While Pope St. John Paul II can rightly be called the Pope of Mercy, Pope Benedict XVI, who served as his doctrinal prefect, spoke especially about the Divine Mercy in its ministerial aspect, saying on the Feast of Divine Mercy in 2008,

[M]ercy is the central nucleus of the Gospel message; it is the very name of God, the Face with which he revealed himself in the Old Covenant and fully in Jesus Christ, the incarnation of creative and redemptive Love. May this merciful love also shine on the face of the Church and show itself through the sacraments, in particular that of Reconciliation, and in works of charity, both communitarian and individual. May all that the Church says and does manifest the mercy God feels for man, and therefore for us. When the Church has to recall an unrecognized truth or a betrayed good, she always does so impelled by merciful love, so that men and women may have life and have it abundantly (cf. Jn 10:10). From divine mercy, which brings peace to hearts, genuine peace flows into the world, peace between different peoples, cultures and religions.

Pope Francis has likewise shown great concern to bring God’s mercy to the sinner, and humanly to the marginalized. Early in his pontificate he called an Extraordinary Jubilee of Divine Mercy, designated priests as “Missionaries of Mercy” with special faculties to reconcile certain classes of penitents and established simpler norms for the handling of difficult marriage cases. He has also frequently advocated for those “on the peripheries” of human society, whether the poor or migrants. On Divine Mercy Sunday in the Jubilee Year he drew attention to the healing aspects of the Divine Mercy, especially as it comes to others through us, saying,

In God’s mercy, all of our infirmities find healing. His mercy, in fact, does not keep a distance: it seeks to encounter all forms of poverty and to free this world of so many types of slavery. Mercy desires to reach the wounds of all, to heal them. Being apostles of mercy means touching and soothing the wounds that today afflict the bodies and souls of many of our brothers and sisters. Curing these wounds, we profess Jesus, we make him present and alive; we allow others, who touch his mercy with their own hands, to recognize him as “Lord and God” (Jn 20:28), as did the Apostle Thomas. This is the mission that he entrusts to us.

Videos on Divine Mercy

What are the Requirements for Divine Mercy Sunday?

The Grace of Complete Forgiveness of Sins and Punishment

Christ’s first act in appearing to the Apostles on Easter night was to empower them to forgive sin in the Sacrament of Reconciliation (John 20:19-23). Unsurprising, the Grace of complete reconciliation, even of the temporal punishment due to our forgiven sins, begins with a good confession.

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 open. I pour out a whole ocean of graces upon those souls who approach the fount of My mercy. The soul that will go to Confession and receive Holy Communion shall obtain complete forgiveness of sins and punishment. On that day all the divine floodgates through which grace flow are opened. Let no soul fear to draw near to Me, even though its sins be as scarlet. (Diary, 699)

This request of Our Lord recognizes a fact of justice the Church herself recognizes, which is, while the Sacrament of Penance is sufficient to remit the eternal penalty for serious sin (separation from God), the penitent’s degree of sorrow, the thoroughness of his conversion, and the obligations of reparation he must satisfy, are often imperfectly satisfied. This “temporal guilt” must be resolved, whether in this life, or in purgatory.

Through St. Faustina, therefore, the Lord calls us to renew our trust in Him so that we are disposed to receive even such a great grace. Only OUR will is missing from the equation. God, however, WILLS IT! Trust in Him.

I want to grant complete pardon to the souls that will go to Confession and receive Holy Communion on the Feast of My mercy. (Diary 1109)

The graces of My mercy are drawn by means of one vessel only, and that is trust. The more a soul trusts, the more it will receive. (1578).

The Veneration of the Image

I want the image solemnly blessed on the first Sunday after Easter, and I want it to be venerated publicly so that every soul may know about it. (Diary, 341)

The Lord asks that we show signs of gratitude for the Divine Mercy on this Feast. Justice certainly requires it, but that alone is not enough. The Image invites us to contemplate the cost of our salvation and its fruits, placing in Him who loved us first, our Faith, our Hope and our Love.

The two rays denote Blood and Water. The pale ray stands for the water that makes souls righteous. The red ray stands for the Blood which is the life of souls . . . These two rays issued forth from the very depths of My tender mercy when my agonized Heart was opened by a lance on the Cross. (Diary, 299)

The Indulgence

If the Grace the Lord offers sounds like the blessings of a plenary indulgence, it is because the remission of ALL punishment due to sin is exactly what a plenary indulgence accomplishes. While a private revelation is not obliged by Faith, so that no one would be dissuaded from approaching the fount of Divine Mercy on Divine Mercy Sunday by that argument, Pope St. John Paul II established it by an act of papal authority, creating a Plenary Indulgence, accessible to Catholics in all circumstances.

“He who knows how to forgive prepares for himself many graces from God. As often as I look upon the cross, so often will I forgive with all my heart.” - St. Faustina (Diary, 390)

Who is the great Apostle of Divine Mercy?

Also known as the Secretary of Divine Mercy, St. Faustina Kowalska was a Polish nun with the Congregation of the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy. She began to have visions of Jesus in 1931, writing them down in her spiritual journal, now titled Divine Mercy in My Soul, and often referred to simply as Diary. From this beginning the apostolate and devotion of Divine Mercy began.

How did Jesus appear to St. Faustina?

Jesus first appeared to her on February 22, 1931, when she was living in her community’s convent in Plock, Poland. St. Faustina said,

In the evening, when I was in my cell, I saw the Lord Jesus clothed in a white garment. One hand [was] raised in the gesture of blessing; the other was touching the garment at the breast. From beneath the garment, slightly drawn aside at the breast, there were emanating two large rays, one red, the other pale. In silence I kept my gaze fixed on the Lord; my soul was struck with awe, but also with great joy. After a while, Jesus said to me, “Paint an image according to the pattern you see, with the signature: Jesus, I trust in You. I desire that this image be venerated, first in your chapel, and [then] throughout the world.” (Diary, 47)

When and where did St. Faustina die?

She died at the age of 33 on October 5, 1938 in the community’s convent in Krakow. It is here where her mortal remains lie, and where the more commonly known image of the Divine Mercy (the original one is in Vilnius) can be found.

Why is St. Faustina important?

St. Faustina had unwavering faith in Jesus and was obedient to Him. Through her Diary, the world has come to better understand the Divine Mercy of Our Lord Jesus Christ.

What is the relationship with Divine Mercy and abortion?

The Lord made St. Faustina know that His wrath was to be unleashed against a certain city, instructing her to pray to avert it (Diary 474). Her spiritual director Fr. Michael Sopocko, now Blessed, provides some details (Summarium, 251).

She [Sr. Faustina] wrote in her diary that Jesus Himself said that He was about to destroy one of the most beautiful cities of our country like Sodom was destroyed on account of the crimes perpetrated there. Having read about these things in the Diary I asked her what does the prophecy mean? She answered confirming what she wrote and replying to a further question of mine, on account of what kind of sins God was going to inflict these punishments. She answered: especially for the killing of infants not yet born, the most grievous crime of all.

In a later entry Jesus allowed St. Faustina to suffer in reparation for this sin.

I wanted very much to make a Holy Hour before the Blessed Sacrament today, but God’s will was otherwise. At eight o’clock I was seized with such violent pains that I had to go to bed at once. I was convulsed with pain for three hours; that is, until eleven o’clock at night. No medicine had any effect on me, and whatever I swallowed I threw up. At times, the pains caused me to lose consciousness. Jesus had me realize that in this way I took part in His Agony in the Garden, and that He himself allowed these sufferings in order to offer reparation to God for the souls murdered in the wombs of wicked mothers. I have gone through these sufferings three times now. They always start at eight o’clock in the evening and last until eleven. No medicine can lessen these sufferings. When eleven o’clock comes, they cease by themselves, and I fall asleep at that moment. (Diary, 1276)

With good reason, the Second Vatican Council called abortion “an abominable crime” (Guadium et spes 51), as it is one which attacks life at its beginning, offending God’s creative majesty, and crying out to Heaven for vengeance (Gen. 4:10-11). The Divine Mercy remains the remedy today, both for abortion and for the other sins of our age. Otherwise, the remedy will be the Divine Justice.

“My daughter, let nothing frighten or disconcert you. Remain deeply at peace. Everything is in My hands.” - Jesus to St. Faustina (Diary, 219)

What is the relationship with the Divine Mercy and the Second Coming of Jesus?

Why would Christ emphasize in our time a doctrine, the Divine Mercy, which has been part of the patrimony of the Faith from the beginning, as well as request new devotional and liturgical expressions of it? In His revelations to St. Faustina Jesus answers this question, connecting it to another doctrine, also sometimes little emphasized, that of His Second Coming.

In the Gospel the Lord shows us that His first coming was in humility, as a Servant, to free the world from sin. Yet, He promises to return in glory to judge the world on love, as He makes clear in his discourses on the Kingdom in Matthew chapters 13 and 25. In between these Comings we have the end times or era of the Church, in which the Church ministers reconciliation to the world until the great and terrible Day of the Lord, the Day of Justice. Every Catholic should be familiar with the teaching of the Church on this matter, contained in paragraphs 668 to 679 of the Catechism of the Catholic Church. Only in the context of public revelation as taught by the Magisterium can we situate the words of private revelation given to Sr. Faustina.

“You will prepare the world for My final coming.” (Diary, 429)

“Speak to the world about My mercy ... It is a sign for the end times. After it will come the Day of Justice. While there is still time, let them have recourse to the fountain of My mercy.” (Diary, 848)

“Tell souls about this great mercy of Mine, because the awful day, the day of My justice, is near.” (Diary, 965)

“I am prolonging the time of mercy for the sake of sinners. But woe to them if they do not recognize this time of My visitation.” (Diary, 1160)

“Before the Day of Justice, I am sending the Day of Mercy.” (Diary, 1588)

“He who refuses to pass through the door of My mercy must pass through the door of My justice.” (Diary, 1146)