The Catholic Defender: The Chaplet of The Divine Mercy Sunday Novena The Fourth Day:
Today bring to Me The PAGANS AND THOSE WHO DO NOT YET KNOW ME. I was thinking also of them during My bitter Passion, and their future zeal comforted My Heart. Immerse them in the ocean of My mercy.
Most compassionate Jesus, You are the Light of the whole world. Receive into the abode of Your Most Compassionate Heart the souls of those who do not believe in God and of those who as yet do not know You. Let the rays of Your grace enlighten them that they, too, together with us, may extol Your wonderful mercy; and do not let them escape from the abode which is Your Most Compassionate Heart. Eternal Father, turn Your merciful gaze upon the souls of those who do not believe in You, and of those who as yet do not know You, but who are enclosed in the Most Compassionate Heart of Jesus. Draw them to the light of the Gospel. These souls do not know what great happiness it is to love You. Grant that they, too, may extol the generosity of Your mercy for endless ages. Amen.
The Catholic Divine Mercy image is a stunning portrayal of the love and mercy of God.
The image, which depicts Jesus with his hand raised in blessing and his other hand touching his heart, has become an iconic representation of the divine mercy.
The image was first revealed to Saint Faustina Kowalska, a Polish nun who had a profound spiritual relationship with Jesus.
According to Saint Faustina's diary, Jesus requested that she have an image of him painted, with the inscription "Jesus, I trust in You" written beneath it. The image was to serve as a reminder of his infinite love and mercy for all people.
The image has many symbolic meanings. Jesus' hand raised in blessing represents his desire to bestow his grace upon humanity.
The rays of light emanating from his heart represent the blood and water that flowed from his side during his crucifixion, which symbolize the sacraments of the Eucharist and Baptism.
The red ray represents the blood of Christ, which cleanses us from sin, and the white ray represents the water of Baptism, which gives us new life in Christ.
The inscription "Jesus, I trust in You" is a powerful reminder of the importance of trust in God's mercy. It invites us to place our faith and confidence in Jesus, who is always ready to forgive and offer us his loving mercy.
This trust is especially important when we are struggling with sin or despair, as it allows us to turn to God in our weakness and receive his help and guidance.
The Catholic Divine Mercy image is a beautiful representation of God's infinite love and mercy.
It reminds us of the importance of trust in Jesus and the power of his grace to transform our lives.
May we always turn to him in times of need, trusting in his loving mercy to guide us on our journey of faith.
The Catechism of the Catholic Church summarizes The Divine Mercy thus:
80"Sacred Tradition and Sacred Scripture, are bound closely together and communicate one with the other. For both of them, flowing out from the same divine well-spring, come together in some fashion to form one thing and move towards the same goal." Each of them makes present and fruitful in the Church the mystery of Christ, who promised to remain with his own "always, to the close of the age."81
"Sacred Scripture is the speech of God as it is put down in writing under the breath of the Holy Spirit."
"And [Holy] Tradition transmits in its entirety the Word of God which has been entrusted to the apostles by Christ the Lord and the Holy Spirit. It transmits it to the successors of the apostles so that, enlightened by the Spirit of truth, they may faithfully preserve, expound, and spread it abroad by their preaching."
96 What Christ entrusted to the apostles, they in turn handed on by their preaching and writing, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, to all generations, until Christ returns in glory.
97"Sacred Tradition and Sacred Scripture make up a single sacred deposit of the Word of God" (DV 10), in which, as in a mirror, the pilgrim Church contemplates God, the source of all her riches.
98"The Church, in her doctrine, life, and worship, perpetuates and transmits to every generation all that she herself is, all that she believes"
99Thanks to its supernatural sense of faith, the People of God as a whole never ceases to welcome, to penetrate more deeply, and to live more fully from the gift of divine Revelation.100The task of interpreting the Word of God authentically has been entrusted solely to the Magisterium of the Church, that is, to the Pope and to the bishops in communion with him.
Establishing Divine Mercy Sunday for the Entire Church
When St. Pope John Paul canonized Sr. Faustina (making her St. Faustina), he also, on the same day, surprised the entire world by establishing Divine Mercy Sunday (the feast day associated with the message) as a feast day for the entire Church. The feast day falls on the Second Sunday of the Easter season. On that day, John Paul II declared, "This is the happiest day of my life."
Reading 1 Acts 5:17-26 The high priest rose up and all his companions, that is, the party of the Sadducees, and, filled with jealousy, laid hands upon the Apostles and put them in the public jail. But during the night, the angel of the Lord opened the doors of the prison, led them out, and said, "Go and take your place in the temple area, and tell the people everything about this life." When they heard this, they went to the temple early in the morning and taught. When the high priest and his companions arrived, they convened the Sanhedrin, the full senate of the children of Israel, and sent to the jail to have them brought in. But the court officers who went did not find them in the prison, so they came back and reported, "We found the jail securely locked and the guards stationed outside the doors, but when we opened them, we found no one inside." When the captain of the temple guard and the chief priests heard this report, they were at a loss about them, as to what this would come to. Then someone came in and reported to them, "The men whom you put in prison are in the temple area and are teaching the people." Then the captain and the court officers went and brought them, but without force, because they were afraid of being stoned by the people.
Responsorial Psalm Ps 34:2-3, 4-5, 6-7, 8-9 R.(7a) The Lord hears the cry of the poor. or: R. Alleluia. I will bless the LORD at all times; his praise shall be ever in my mouth. Let my soul glory in the LORD; the lowly will hear me and be glad. R.The Lord hears the cry of the poor. or: R. Alleluia. Glorify the LORD with me, let us together extol his name. I sought the LORD, and he answered me and delivered me from all my fears. R. The Lord hears the cry of the poor. or: R. Alleluia. Look to him that you may be radiant with joy, and your faces may not blush with shame. When the poor one called out, the LORD heard, and from all his distress he saved him. R. The Lord hears the cry of the poor. or: R. Alleluia. The angel of the LORD encamps around those who fear him, and delivers them. Taste and see how good the LORD is; blessed the man who takes refuge in him. R. The Lord hears the cry of the poor. or: R. Alleluia.
Alleluia Jn 3:16 R. Alleluia, alleluia. God so loved the world that he gave his only-begotten Son, so that everyone who believes in him might have eternal life. R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Jn 3:16-21 God so loved the world that he gave his only-begotten Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through him. Whoever believes in him will not be condemned, but whoever does not believe has already been condemned, because he has not believed in the name of the only-begotten Son of God. And this is the verdict, that the light came into the world, but people preferred darkness to light, because their works were evil. For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come toward the light, so that his works might not be exposed. But whoever lives the truth comes to the light, so that his works may be clearly seen as done in God.
Saint of the Day:St. Gianna Beretta Molla (A woman of exceptional love)
St. Gianna Beretta Molla was an Italian pediatrician born in Magenta in the Kingdom of Italy on October 4, 1922. She was the tenth of thirteen children in her family.
As a young girl, Gianna openly accepted her faith and the Catholic-Christian education provided to her from her loving parents. She grew up viewing life as God's beautiful gift and found the greatest necessity and effectiveness in prayer.
In 1942, Gianna began her study of medicine in Milan. She was a diligent and hardworking student, both at the university and in her faith.
As a member of the St. Vincent de Paul Society, Gianna applied her faith in an apostolic service for the elderly and needy.
In 1952, Gianna specialized in pediatrics at the University of Milan and from there on, she was especially drawn toward mothers, babies, the elderly and the poor.
In less than 40 years, Gianna Beretta Molla became a pediatric physician, a wife, a mother and a saint!
She was born in Magenta near Milano, the tenth of Alberto and Maria Beretta’s 13 children. An active member of the St. Vincent de Paul Society and a leader in the Catholic Action movement, Gianna also enjoyed skiing and mountain climbing. She earned degrees in medicine and surgery from the University of Pavia, eventually specializing in pediatrics. In 1952, Gianna opened a clinic in the small town of Mesero, where she met engineer Pietro Molla.
Shortly before their 1955 marriage, Gianna wrote to Pietro: “Love is the most beautiful sentiment that the Lord has put into the soul of men and women.” In the next four years the Mollas had three children: Pierluigi, Mariolina, and Laura. Two pregnancies following ended in miscarriage.
Early in her final pregnancy, doctors discovered that Gianna had both a child and a tumor in her uterus. She allowed the surgeons to remove the tumor but not to perform the complete hysterectomy that they recommended, which would have killed the child. Seven months later in April 1962, Gianna Emanuela Molla was born at the hospital in Monza, but post-operative complications resulted in an infection for her mother. The following week Gianna Molla died at home, and was buried in the cemetery of Mesero.
Gianna Emanuela went on to become a physician herself. Gianna Beretta Molla was beatified in 1994 and canonized 10 years later. Her liturgical feast is celebrated on April 28.
With great faith and courage, Gianna Molla made the choice that enabled her daughter to be born. We can often wish that we were in different circumstances, but holiness frequently comes from making difficult choices in bad situations.
Abstract. Saint Gianna Beretta Molla gave up her life to save the life of her child. She was a devout woman and pediatrician who refused a hysterectomy to remove a benign fibroid tumor in her uterus during pregnancy as the procedure would have resulted in the death of her unborn child.
Gianna considered the field of medicine to be her mission, and treated it as such. She increased her generous service to Catholic Action, a movement of lay Catholics dedicated to living and spreading the Social Teaching of the Catholic Church in the broader culture. The Catholic Action movement is still at work today, throughout the world.
Gianna died a week after successfully delivering her daughter. The Roman Catholic Church canonized Gianna as a Saint on May 16, 2004, after verifying two miracles attributed to her intercession.
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St. Gianna gave birth to a baby girl but died on April 28, 1962, just eight days later due to complications of the delivery, That child, named Gianna Emanuela, grew up to become a physician herself and has had a wonderful life because of her mother’s selfless sacrifice.
Gianna Beretta Molla was beatified on Mother’s Day in 1994, the Year of the Family, with her husband and children in attendance. Pope Saint John Paul II described her that day as:
” A woman of exceptional love, an outstanding wife and mother, she gave witness in her daily life to the demanding values of the Gospel. By holding up this woman as an exemplar of Christian perfection, we would like to extol all those high-spirited mothers of families who give themselves completely to their family, who suffer in giving birth, who are prepared for every labor and every kind of sacrifice, so that the best they have can be given to others.”