Open your hearts to God’s mercy…
(c)Mateo Ivankovic 2017
March 30, 2017
Dear Family of Mary!
“Dear children! In this time of grace, I am calling all of you to open your hearts to God’s mercy, to begin a new life through prayer, penance and a decision for holiness. This time of spring moves you to a new life, to a renewal, in your thoughts and hearts. Therefore, little children, I am with you to help you to say ‘yes’ to God and to God’s commandments with resoluteness. You are not alone; I am with you through the grace which the Most High gives me for you and your descendants. Thank you for having responded to my call.” (March 25, 2017)
Our Lady tells us in this message to “open your hearts to God’s mercy…” Of course we realize that there is no way to draw close to God without first recognizing our sinfulness and our dire need for His mercy. Mercy is the basis for our relationship with the Father. We have all sinned. No one deserves heaven on their own merit. It is the Mercy of God that draws us to Him, that makes the way for us to know, love and serve Him. His Mercy is our only hope!
That said, we can learn about this Mercy from a modern saint, St. Faustina Kowalska. Jesus chose this beautiful and simple Polish nun to be the apostle of His Mercy in the horrific 20th century. In the midst of terrible wars and social upheaval, St. Faustina brought the message of trust in God’s Mercy to suffering humanity.
Let’s listen to what Jesus told her about His Mercy:
Soul: Lord, I doubt that You will pardon my numerous sins; my misery fills me with fright.
Jesus: My mercy is greater than your sins and those of the entire world. Who can measure the extent of my goodness? For you I descended from heaven to earth; for you I allowed myself to be nailed to the cross; for you I let my Sacred Heart be pierced with a lance, thus opening wide the source of mercy for you. Come, then, with trust to draw graces from this fountain. I never reject a contrite heart. Your misery has disappeared in the depths of My mercy. Do not argue with Me about your wretchedness. You will give me pleasure if you hand over to me all your troubles and griefs. I shall heap upon you the treasures of My grace. (1486)
And again He told her:
My daughter, know that My Heart is mercy itself. From this sea of mercy, graces flow out upon the whole world. No soul that has approached Me has ever gone away unconsoled. All misery gets buried in the depths of My mercy, and every saving and sanctifying grace flows from this fountain. My daughter, I desire that your heart be an abiding place of My mercy. I desire that this mercy flow out upon the whole world through your heart. Let no one who approaches you go away without that trust in My mercy which I so ardently desire for souls.
Pray as much as you can for the dying. By your entreaties, obtain for them trust in My mercy, because they have most need of trust, and have it the least. Be assured that the grace of eternal salvation for certain souls in their final moments depends on your prayer. You know the whole abyss of My mercy, (129) so draw upon it for yourself and especially for poor sinners. Sooner would heaven and earth turn into nothingness than would My mercy not embrace a trusting soul. (1777)
Hearing these words of Jesus is like drinking in pure waters when we have been dying of thirst. We need God’s Mercy. We need His gentle forgiveness and total desire to justify us through His Passion and Death. How can we not open our hearts to God’s mercy?
The next three weeks are the pinnacle of our Christian faith, the celebration of the Passion and Death of Jesus and His Resurrection from the Dead at Easter. We also begin the Novena to Divine Mercy on Good Friday, culminating in the celebration of Divine Mercy Sunday on the Sunday after Easter.
This is the time of Mercy!! May we open our hearts to God’s Mercy through our careful and fervent prayer, penance and a decision for holiness as we enter into the Paschal Mystery!
In Jesus, Mary and Joseph!
©Mary TV 2017
PS. Yesterday, March 29, 2017, Archbishop Henryk Hoser arrived in Medjugorje to begin his visitation as Special Envoy of the Holy See. He comes to Medjugorje to assess the needs of the pilgrims and the parish, the pastoral needs of all. Mary TV was on hand to live stream his arrival. He was greeted by the Pastor and his team of Franciscans of St. James Parish, as well as many parishioners and pilgrims. You can see his arrival on the Mary TV website at this link: https://marytv.tv/?page_id=1456
Let’s pray for Archbishop Hoser and all involved that the light and love of Jesus will surround them and enlighten them as to God’s will for this most beautiful village of Mary!