NOW IS THE TIME OF MERCY
(Part 2 of a retreat talk by Willy Effinger)
On June 27th in 1937, St. Faustina wrote about a new Congregation which would change the world by deeds of mercy; listen to what she wrote in entries 1158 and 1159.
"A member of this group ought to perform at least one act of mercy a day; at least one, but there can be many more, for such deeds
can easily be carried out by anyone, even the very poorest. For there are three ways of performing an act of mercy: the merciful word, by forgiving and by comforting; secondly, if you can offer no word, then pray – that too is mercy; and thirdly deeds of mercy. And when the Last Day comes, we shall be judged from this and this basis we shall receive the eternal verdict." (#1158)
"God's floodgates have been opened for us. Let us want to take advantage of them before the day of God's justice arrives. And that will be a dreadful day!" (#1159)
When St. Faustina asked the Lord how He could tolerate so many sins, His answer was recorded in Diary entry #1160: "I have eternity for punishing and so I am prolonging the time of mercy for the sake of sinners. But woe to them if they do not recognize this time of My visitation. My daughter, Secretary of My mercy, your duty is not only to write about and proclaim My mercy, but also to beg for the grace for them, so that they too may glorify My mercy."
Did you recognize the severity of His warning? Woe to the souls who don't recognize the time of the Lord's visitation! When the Lord speaks of His wrath, He means it; we should not try to water it down and say that He is displeased with our behaviour. Rather, we should remember that the Divine Physician always provides the medicine that we need to take our "illnesses" away. He told St. Faustina where we are to find the cure. Read what St. Faustina wrote in entry #1448: "... Tell souls where they are to look for solace: that is, in the Tribunal of Mercy. There, the greatest miracles take place and are incessantly repeated. To avail oneself of this miracle, it is not necessary to go on a great pilgrimage or to carry out some external ceremony; it suffices to come with faith to the feet of My representative and to reveal to him one's misery and the miracle of Divine Mercy will be fully demonstrated. Were a soul like a decaying corpse so that from a human standpoint, there would be no hope of restoration and everything would be already lost, it is not so with God. The miracle of Divine Mercy restores that soul in full. Oh, how miserable are those who do not take advantage of the miracle of God's mercy!"
In the last year of St. Faustina's life, the Lord reinforced again and again the need for mankind to return to Him. In Diary entry #1588, she recorded the following words of Jesus: "In the Old Covenant, I sent prophets wielding thunderbolts to My people. Today I am sending you with My mercy to the people of the whole world. I do not wish to punish aching mankind, but I desire to heal it, pressing it to My merciful Heart. I use punishment when they themselves force Me to do so; My Hand is reluctant to take hold of the sword of justice. Before the Day of Justice, I am sending the Day of Mercy.
Let me end this section with the words of St. Faustina from Diary entry #1589:
do not know, Lord, at what hour You will come.
wait for You, Lord, in calm and silence,
then, at last, my most sweet Lord
on this earth is but an agony,
Let us all, dear friends, recognize the graces available to us during this Time of Mercy. May we make good use of our time and talents so that we will be ready for the Day of Justice.