Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Trust - Diary of St. Faustina Talk 5, July 22, 2015

Trust - Diary Faustina - Talk 5 - 7-22-15
Opening Prayer (Please turn to Diary #832)
O merciful Jesus, how longingly You hurried to the Upper Room to consecrate the Host that I am to receive in my life. Jesus, You desired to dwell in my heart. Your living Blood unites with mine. Who can understand this close union? My heart encloses within itself the Almighty, the Infinite One. 0 Jesus, continue to grant me Your divine life. Let Your pure and noble Blood throb with all its might in my heart. I give You my whole being. Transform me into Yourself and make me capable of doing Your holy will in all things and of returning Your love. O my sweet Spouse, You know that my heart knows no one but You. You have opened up in my heart an insatiable depth of love for You. From the very first moment it knew You, my heart has loved You and has lost itself in You as its one and only object. May Your pure and omnipotent love be the driving force of all my actions. Who will ever conceive and understand the depth of mercy that has gushed forth from Your Heart?  (Diary #892)

Today in this class, we will cover the message of Divine Mercy, including the request from Jesus for Sr. Faustina to help paint the image of Divine Mercy, to spread the Chaplet of Divine Mercy, and to help establish the Feast of the Divine Mercy Sunday. Up to now, the past four classes, we covered the life of St. Faustina from the very beginning of her life to her entrance in the Congregation of Our Lady of Mercy, and her experience through the “Dark Night of the Soul.” Was it necessary to cover her life? Could we not just skip over and focus on the message of Divine Mercy, the image, the Chaplet, and the special Feast of Divine Mercy Sunday?

“Trust,” is the title and the essence of these classes. Trusting in Jesus Christ is a free act of the will, a believing faith in Him. It means to abandon oneself to the truth of the word of the living God. To trust is a decision, an act of our free will. It is this free-will act that God asks for, expects, and waits for. God waits for our act of trust, our “yes” to His plan, in order to flood us with His love with His love and eternal life. Jesus grants to certain souls, like Sr. Faustina, special graces of union with Himself in order to do some great work that is, humanly speaking, absolutely beyond their power.

We saw in Sr. Faustina’s Diary that her “yes”, her trust in God’s plan for her was essential part of the message of Divine Mercy.   Jesus said to St. Faustina:

Know, My daughter, that between Me and you there is a bottomless abyss, an abyss which separates the Creator from the creature. But this abyss is filled with My mercy. I raise you up to Myself, not that I have need of you, but it is solely out of mercy that I grant you the grace of union with Myself (Diary, 1576).

Imagine, even for a pure and saintly soul like Sr. Faustina, there exists an abyss between her and God. What about us? Do we ever see ourselves better than those who do not attend church or appear to live a sinful life? No matter how good we think we are, bottomless abyss is the gap between us and God. Our efforts will not fill this gap; only God’s mercy, His forgiveness can fill this gap. How do we initiate this process of God filling the bottomless abyss with His mercy? It is our trust in Him. Think of how many souls in this world do not trust Him? Should that bother us? Yes! Some of our own family members and friends do not trust God. And we are saddened and even pained that they do not have relationship with God. If we feel saddened about this situation, can you imagine how God feels? He expressed this to Sr. Faustina. She wrote:

November 19. After Communion today, Jesus told me how much He desires to come to human hearts. I desire to unite Myself with human souls; My great delight is to unite Myself with souls. Know, My daughter, that when I come to a human heart in Holy Communion, My hands are full of all kinds of graces which I want to give to the soul. But souls do not even pay any attention to Me; they leave Me to Myself and busy themselves with other things. Oh, how sad I am that souls do not recognize Love! They treat Me as a dead object. I answered Jesus, "O Treasure of my heart, the only object of my love and entire delight of my soul, I want to adore You in my heart as You are adored on the throne of Your eternal glory. My love wants to make up to You at least in part for the coldness of so great a number of souls. Jesus, behold my heart which is for You a dwelling place to which no one else has entry. You alone repose in it as in a beautiful garden. (Diary, 1385)

Once we experience God’s generous mercy upon our own soul, our response in gratitude is to offer ourselves in service of God to be merciful to others and forgive them. We know through our own experience how difficult it is to be merciful and forgiving of others. We cannot do this on our own. We need God’s grace.

Sr. Faustina, out of gratitude to God for His mercy upon her soul, she greatly desired do something for Jesus. Jesus in turn asked her to unite herself to His Passion for the sake of saving souls. Our Lord invited her to the exclusive privilege of drinking from the cup that He drank (Diary, 1626).  Jesus made clear to Sr. Faustina that she was participating in the great work of salvation:

I am giving you a share in the redemption of mankind (Diary, 310).

Help Me, My daughter, to save souls. Join your sufferings to My Passion and offer them to the heavenly Father for sinners (Diary, 1032).

On Holy Thursday of 1934, after hearing Jesus ask her to make an offering of herself for sinners, she made an act of oblation (an act of offering herself as a sacrifice):

Before heaven and earth, before all the choirs of Angels, before the Most Holy Virgin Mary, before all the Powers of heaven, I declare to the One Triune God that today, in union with Jesus Christ, Redeemer of souls, I make a voluntary offering of myself for the conversion of sinners, especially for those souls who have lost hope in God's mercy. This offering consists in my accepting, with total subjection to God's will, all the sufferings, fears and terrors with which sinners are filled. In return, I give them all the consolations which my soul receives from my communion with God. In a word, I offer everything for them: Holy Masses, Holy Communions, penances, mortifications, prayers. I do not fear the blows, blows of divine justice, because I am united with Jesus. O my God, in this way I want to make amends to You for the souls that do not trust in Your goodness. I hope against all hope in the ocean of Your mercy. My Lord and my God, my portion-my portion forever, I do not base this act of oblation on my own strength, but on the strength that flows from the merits of Jesus Christ. I will daily repeat this act of self-oblation by pronouncing the following prayer which You yourself have taught me, Jesus:

"O Blood and Water which gushed forth from the Heart of Jesus as a Fount of Mercy for us, I trust in You!"  (Diary, 309)

Sr. Faustina’s mission included not only offering herself as a sacrifice, but also spreading the message of Divine Mercy. The mission included helping (a) to spread devotion to the image of Divine Mercy, (b) to help establish a Feast of Mercy, (c) to spread the Chaplet of Divine Mercy, (d) to encourage souls to seek the Sacrament of Reconciliation.

The Image of Divine Mercy
On February 22, 1931, in the convent in Plock, Sr. Faustina wrote:

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. (47)

48 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. (48)
Through this image, Jesus made known His great desire that all come to the rays of mercy, all come to His Heart, pierced for us and flowing with blood and water. Sr. Faustina’s spiritual director, Fr. Michael Sopocko, then asked for the meaning of the two rays. She wrote:

During prayer I heard these words within me: The two rays denote Blood and Water. The pale ray stands for the Water which 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.

These rays shield souls from the wrath of My Father. Happy is the one who will dwell in their shelter, for the just hand of God shall not lay hold of him. I desire that the first Sunday after Easter be the Feast of Mercy. (Diary, 299)

The Feast of Mercy
Jesus’ request for the image of Divine Mercy was immediately followed by a request for a Feast of Mercy:

When I told this to my confessor, I received this for a reply: "That refers to your soul." He told me, "Certainly, paint God's image in your soul." When I came out of the confessional, I again heard words such as these: My image already is in your soul. I desire that there be a Feast of Mercy. I want this image, which you will paint with a brush, to be solemnly blessed on the first Sunday after Easter; that Sunday is to be the Feast of Mercy. (49)

+I desire that priests proclaim this great mercy of Mine towards souls of sinners. Let the sinner not be afraid to approach Me. The flames of mercy are burning Me - clamoring to be spent; I want to pour them out upon these souls. (50)

The Chaplet of Divine Mercy
In September 1935, God revealed to Sr. Faustina a powerful prayer for mercy on the whole world: the Chaplet of Divine Mercy. Said on the beads of the rosary, the prayer pleads for God’s mercy on the world, offering Him the sacrifice of His beloved Son, Jesus Christ.

The chaplet, the Act of Oblation, the abandonment to God’s will, the stigmata, and her close identification with Jesus’ Passion all point to Faustina’s role in the Church. On September 30, 1935, Faustina wrote in her Diary that she was sure of her mission to the Church and the world: She was to spend her life pleading for mercy for the world.

She was given a premonition of this through an earlier vision.
Once I saw a big crowd of people in our chapel, in front of the chapel and in the street, because there was no room for them inside. The chapel was decorated for a feast. There were a lot of clergy near the altar, and then our sisters and those of many other congregations. They were all waiting for the person who was to take a place on the altar. Suddenly I heard a voice saying that I was to take the place on the altar. But as soon as I left the corridor to go across the yard and enter the chapel, following the voice that was calling me, all the people began to throw at me whatever they had to hand: mud, stones, sand, brooms, to such an extent that I at first hesitated to go forward. But the voice kept on calling me even more earnestly, so I walked on bravely.

When I entered the chapel, the superiors, the sisters, the students, and even my parents started to hit me with whatever they could, and so whether I wanted to or not, I quickly took my place on the altar. As soon as I was there, the very same people, the students, the sisters, the superiors and my parents all began to hold their arms out to me asking for graces; and as for me, I did not bear any grudge against them for having thrown all sorts of things at me, and I was surprised that I felt a very special love precisely for those persons who had forced me to go more quickly to my appointed place. At the same time my soul was filled with ineffable happiness, and I heard these words, Do whatever you wish, distribute graces as you will, to whom you will and when you will. Then, instantly, the vision disappeared. (Diary, 31)

Sr. Faustina serves as a model of all of us disciples of Jesus on how our hearts need to be transformed to be merciful to others.
My daughter, I desire that your heart be formed after the model of My merciful Heart. You must be completely imbued with My mercy. (Diary, 167)
How can we best respond to God’s unfathomable mercy?

Way of the Cross with Jesus and St. Faustina

First Station: Jesus is Condemned to Death
Jesus: (Celebrant) Do not be surprised that you are sometimes unjustly accused. I Myself first drank this cup of undeserved suffering for love of you (289). When I was before Herod, I obtained a grace for you; namely, that you would be able to rise above human scorn and follow faithfully in My footsteps (1164).
S. Faustina: (People) We are sensitive to words and quickly want to answer back, without taking any regard as to whether it is God’s will that we should speak. A silent soul is strong; no adversities will harm it if it perseveres in silence. The silent soul is capable of attaining the closest union with God (477).
All: Merciful Jesus, help me to know how to accept every human judgment and do not allow me ever to render a condemnatory judgment on You in my neighbors.

Second Station: Jesus Carries His Cross
Jesus: (C.) Do not be afraid of sufferings; I am with you (151). The more you will come to love suffering, the purer your love for Me will be (279).
S. Faustina: (P.) Jesus, I thank You for the little daily crosses, for opposition to my endeavors, for the hardships of communal life, for the misinterpretation of my intentions, for humiliations at the hands of others, for the harsh way in which we are treated, for false suspicions, for poor health and loss of strength, for self-denial, for dying to myself, for lack of recognition in everything, for the upsetting of all my plans. (343).
All: Merciful Jesus, teach me to value life’s toil, sicknesses, and every suffering, and with love to carry my daily crosses.

Third Station: Jesus Falls the First Time
Jesus: (C.) Involuntary offenses of souls do not hinder My love for them or prevent Me from uniting Myself with them. But voluntary offenses, even the smallest, obstruct My graces, and I cannot lavish My gifts on such souls (1641).
S. Faustina: (P.) My Jesus, despite Your graces, I see and feel all my misery. … O my Jesus, how prone I am to evil, and this forces me to be constantly vigilant. But I do not lose heart. I trust God’s grace, which abounds in the worst misery (606).
All: Merciful Lord, preserve me from every, even the tiniest but voluntary and conscious infidelity.
Fourth Station: Jesus Meets His Sorrowful Mother
Jesus: (C.) Although all the works that come into being by My will are exposed to great sufferings, consider whether any of them has been subject to greater difficulties than that work which is directly Mine — the work of Redemption. You should not worry too much about adversities. (1643).
S. Faustina: (P.) I saw the Blessed Virgin, unspeakably beautiful. She held me close to herself and said to me, I am Mother to you all, thanks to the unfathomable mercy of God. Most pleasing to me is that soul which faithfully carries out the will of God. Be courageous. Do not fear apparent obstacles, but fix your gaze upon the Passion of my Son, and in this way you will be victorious (449).
All: Mary, Mother of Mercy, be near me always, especially in suffering as you were on your Son’s way of the cross.

Fifth Station: Simon Helps Jesus Carry His Cross
Jesus: (C.) Write that by day and by night My gaze is fixed upon him, and I permit these adversities in order to increase his merit. I do not reward for good results but for the patience and hardship undergone for My sake (86).
S. Faustina: (P.) Jesus, You do not give a reward for the successful performance of a work, but for the good will and the labor undertaken. Therefore, I am completely at peace, even if all my undertakings and efforts should be thwarted or should come to naught. If I do all that is in my power, the rest is not my business (952).
All: Jesus, my Lord, let my every thought, word, and deed be undertaken exclusively out of love for You. Keep on cleansing my intentions.

Sixth Station: Veronica Wipes the Face of Jesus
Jesus: (C.) Know that whatever good you do to any soul, I accept it as if you had done it to Me (1768).
S. Faustina: (P.) I am learning how to be good from Jesus, from Him who is goodness itself, so that I may be called a [child] of the heavenly Father (669). Great love can change small things into great ones, and it is only love which lends value to our actions (303).
All: Lord Jesus, my Master, grant that my eyes, my hands, my lips and my heart may always be merciful. Transform me into mercy.

Seventh Station: Jesus Falls the Second Time
Jesus: (C.) The cause of your falls is that you rely too much upon yourself and too little on Me. But let this not sadden you so much. You are dealing with the God of mercy (1488). Know that of yourself you can do nothing (639). Without special help from Me, you are not even capable of accepting My graces (738).
S. Faustina: (P.) Jesus, do not leave me alone in suffering. You know, Lord, how weak I am. I am an abyss of wretchedness, I am nothingness itself; so what will be so strange if You leave me alone and I fall? (1489). So You, Jesus, must stand by me constantly like a mother by a helpless child — and even more so (264).
All: May Your grace assist me, Lord, that I may not keep falling continuously into the same faults; and when I fall, help me to rise and glorify Your mercy.

Eighth Station: Jesus Meets the Women of Jerusalem
Jesus: (C.) O how pleasing to Me is living faith! (1420) Tell all, that I demand that they live in the spirit of faith (353).
S. Faustina: (P.) I fervently beg the Lord to strengthen my faith, so that in my drab, everyday life I will not be guided by human dispositions, but by those of the spirit. Oh, how everything drags man towards the earth! But lively faith maintains the soul in the higher regions and assigns self-love its proper place; that is to say, the lowest one (210).
All: Merciful Lord, I thank You for holy Baptism and the grace of faith. Continuously, I call: Lord, I believe, increase my faith.

Ninth Station: Jesus Falls the Third Time
Jesus: (C.) My child, know that the greatest obstacles to holiness are discouragement and an exaggerated anxiety. These will deprive you of the ability to practice virtue. Do not lose heart in coming for pardon, for I am always ready to forgive you. As often as you beg for it, you glorify My mercy. (1488).
S. Faustina: (P.) My Jesus, despite Your graces, I see and feel all my misery. I begin my day with battle and end it with battle. As soon as I conquer one obstacle, ten more appear to take its place. But I am not worried, because I know that this is the time of struggle, not peace (606).
All: Merciful Lord, I give over to You that which is my exclusive property, that is, my sin and my human weakness. I beg You, may my misery drown in Your unfathomable mercy.

Tenth Station: Jesus Is Stripped Of His Garments
S. Faustina: (P.) Jesus was suddenly standing before me, stripped of His clothes, His body completely covered with wounds, His eyes flooded with tears and blood, His face disfigured and covered with spittle.
Jesus: (C.) The bride must resemble her Betrothed.
S. Faustina: (P.) I understood these words to their very depth. There is no room for doubt here. My likeness to Jesus must be through suffering and humility (268).
All: Jesus, meek and humble of heart, make my heart like unto Your heart.

Eleventh Station: Jesus Is Nailed To The Cross
Jesus: (C.) My pupil, have great love for those who cause you suffering. Do good to those who hate you (1628).
S. Faustina: (P.) O my Jesus, you know what efforts are needed to live sincerely and unaffectedly with those from whom our nature flees, or with those who, deliberately or not, have made us suffer. Humanly speaking, this is impossible. At such times more than at others, I try to discover the Lord Jesus in such a person and for the same Jesus, I do everything for such people (766).
All: O purest Love, rule in all Your plenitude in my heart and help me to do Your holy will most faithfully (328).

Twelfth Station: Jesus Dies on the Cross
Jesus: (C.) All this is for the salvation of souls. Consider well, My daughter, what you are doing for their salvation (1184).
S. Faustina: (P.) Then I saw the Lord Jesus nailed to the cross. When He had hung on it for a while, I saw a multitude of souls crucified like Him. Then I saw a second multitude of souls, and a third. The second multitude were not nailed to [their] crosses, but were holding them firmly in their hands. The third were neither nailed to [their] crosses nor holding them firmly in their hands, but were dragging [their] crosses behind them and were discontent.
Jesus: (C.) Do you see these souls? Those who are like Me in the pain and contempt they suffer will be like Me also in glory. And those who resemble Me less in pain and contempt will also bear less resemblance to Me in glory (446).
All: Jesus, my Savior, hide me in the depth of Your heart that, fortified by Your grace, I may

Thirteenth Station: Jesus Is Taken Down From the Cross
Jesus: (C.) Most dear to Me is the soul that strongly believes in My goodness and has complete trust in Me. I heap My confidence upon it and give it all it asks (453).
S. Faustina: (P.) I fly to Your mercy, Compassionate God, who alone are good. Although my misery is great, and my offenses are many, I trust in Your mercy, because You are the God of mercy; and, from time immemorial, it has never been heard of, nor do heaven or earth remember, that a soul trusting in Your mercy has been disappointed (1730).
All: Merciful Jesus, daily increase my trust in Your mercy that always and everywhere I may give witness to Your boundless goodness and love.

Fourteenth Station: Jesus Is Placed In the Tomb
Jesus: (C.) But child, you are not yet in your homeland; so go, fortified by My grace, and fight for My kingdom in human souls; fight as a king’s child would; and remember that the days of your exile will pass quickly, and with them the possibility of earning merit for heaven. I expect from you, My child, a great number of souls who will glorify My mercy for all eternity (1489).
S. Faustina: (P.) Every soul You have entrusted to me, Jesus, I will try to aid with prayer and sacrifice, so that Your grace can work in them. O great lover of souls, my Jesus, I thank You for this immense confidence with which You have deigned to place souls in our care (245).
All: Grant, Merciful Lord, that not even one of those souls which You have entrusted to me be lost.