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Now is the Time for Mercy: Weekly Message for 03-29-16
Dear Fellow Digital Pilgrims, pax Christi:
In ancient Greek there are two words for understanding time, chronos and kairos. While the former refers to chronological or the sequential ’tick tock’ of time, the latter signifies a time lapse, a moment of indeterminate time in which everything happens. In his first book The Name of God is Mercy, with Andrea Tornielli, Pope Francis speaks of this moment of time being a kairos of mercy.
“This is a time of mercy. The Church is showing her maternal side, her motherly face, to a humanity that is wounded. She does not wait for the wounded to knock on her doors, she looks for them on the streets, she gathers them in, she embraces them, she takes care of them, she makes them feel loved. And so, as I said, and I am ever more convinced of it, this is a kairos, our era is a kairos of mercy, an opportune time.”
Within this opportune time, Easter week is a unique time of mercy that focuses on the theme of Divine Mercy and forgiveness. It leads up to the Second Sunday of Easter, now celebrated as Divine Mercy Sunday on April 3rd this year. This great feast points us to the merciful love of God that lies behind the whole Paschal Mystery — the whole mystery of the death, burial and resurrection of Christ — made present for us in the Eucharist. In this way, it also sums up the whole Easter Octave.
As St. John Paul II pointed out in his Regina Caeli address on Divine Mercy Sunday, 1995, “the whole octave of Easter is like a single day,” and the Octave Sunday is meant to be a day of “thanksgiving for the goodness God has shown to man in the whole Easter mystery.” On this day, the divine floodgates of Heaven are opened wide, and Jesus offers us total forgiveness of all sins and punishment to any soul who goes to Confession and receives Him in Holy Communion.
So what is this devotion to Divine Mercy, and how does it make a difference in my life? With that in mind, here’s a brief overview of our latest Retreat Guide, The Dawn of Mercy: An Easter Retreat Guide on Divine Mercy.
- In the first meditation we’ll explore the dawn of the devotion to the Divine Mercy in the midst of the 20th century’s horrific evil.
- In the second meditation we’ll reflect on how Divine Mercy meets each of us individually.
- In the conference we’ll look at Divine Mercy as an offer and a response, and examine some practical consequences.
I will be united with you in praying the Novena of Divine Mercy, from Good Friday to Divine Mercy Sunday. It gives me great joy to know, in this amazing “kairos of mercy,” that we will be united with millions of faithful across the globe who seek an outpouring of God’s mercy for our souls and the whole world.
Thank you and God bless you!