Maria Faustina was born Helena Kowalska in Glogowiec, Poland, in 1905. Intensely spiritual from an early age, Helena was drawn to the righteous life as a small child. She cherished to spend time talking to Jesus in prayer and perceived merriment in retelling the tales about the everyday lives of the saints. Supposedly, by the time she was ten, she had already received multiple perceptions of the Blessed Mother. At the age of seven, she remembers sounding the expression of Jesus calling her to religious life.
Helena’s parents communicated her apart when she was 16 years old to work as a domestic for a affluent kinfolk. Following a particularly vivid vision, she returned home to get permission to join a convent. Her parents were opposed to this choice of occupation and refused to help her with a dowry to join a religious order — a patronage of the time. Suffering for a few years under the obedience of her mothers, she was finally freed to join the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy in 1925. She took the call Faustina, which means fortunate, at her first swears in 1928.
Faustina experienced many visions, forewarns, and other internal spiritual blessings during her lifetime and suffered greatly from taunt and mistreatment from those who did not understand. Her most intense vision came to her on the evening of February 22, 1931. In this imagination, Jesus appeared to her, clutching His chest with one mitt near His Sacred Heart and the other unfolded forth in a boon. From His heart originated two lights, one red and one white-hot. Jesus charged Faustina with the task of spreading this devotion to His Sacred Heart, called the Divine Mercy.
Jesus requested Faustina to make a painting of His image as a remembrance of her know and for the salvation of the minds who would venerate it. Throughout their own lives, Jesus appeared to Faustina many times bestowing endowments of spiritual guidance, petition and lead. He instilled in her the meaning of salvific suffering and the ended understanding of His infinite mercy. His message to this simple woman, who had only three years of formal education, contained the words and dreams that fill a diary known today as Divine Mercy in My Soul.
Devotion to the Divine Mercy began almost immediately after Faustina’s perceptions and continued well after her demise. However, the Church boycotted the fondnes from 1959 to 1978 due to some misconceptions. Pope John Paul II, who started his fondnes as a young clergyman in Poland, was instrumental in lifting the ban. He beatified Faustina in 1993 and she was canonized on Divine Mercy Sunday( the first Sunday after Easter) in the Jubilee Year of 2000.
Faithful around the world recite the Divine Mercy devotions daily at 3 p. m ., the hour of Great Mercy. The invocation, “Jesus, I trust in You! ” has become a source of enormous appeal to His Most Sacred Heart.
Other Saints We Remember Today
St. Placid and Friends( 541 ), Religious, Martyrs
Blessed Raymond of Capua( 1399 ), Spiritual Director of St. Catherine of Siena
St. Flora of Beaulieu( 1347 ), Virgin, Religious
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