Nov 17, 2016
In October I spoke at the Daughters of Isabella meeting about our Divine Mercy prayer ministry every Friday at 3:00 PM here at St. Charles. I told them I was hoping that our Friday Divine Mercy would build up during the year of Mercy but it did not. I asked meeting participants, “How many of you have joined us even once?” I continued with, “don’t raise your hands, because I already know, only 5 to 7 people, the same 5 to 7 people have come to pray the Divine Mercy chaplet in church together since I received permission to start it 4 years ago, but lately only about 3 or 4 come regularly.” I said, “I know not all of you can make it because of work or other responsibilities.” I let them know that I’m not trying to put anyone on a guilt trip. I called them the cream of the crop and told them that I’m aware of all the good work they do.
I shared my story of how I came to know of the Divine Mercy Chaplet and how it took me a while to warm up to this special prayer given to St. Faustina by Jesus. I told them that St. Faustina promised to continue to spread the Divine Mercy Chaplet even after her death, and the way she does this is to call people like me to promote the chaplet in our parish. I talked about my efforts to start a Divine Mercy Prayer Group at St. Charles and finally succeeded.
Father, I brought notes with me but I didn’t need to look at them. What I wanted to say was already in my heart.
I suggested they come once in awhile. I asked them to please put our Friday 3:00 PM Divine Mercy Ministry on their home calendars or on their computer calendars such as google, outlook, etc as recurring for every Friday. I gave a scenario of what might happen: a reminder pops up on your computer or phone. You see it but it’s not a good day or time to go. Then one day it pops up and you have no other commitments, so you decide to come. I suggested they come once a month or once every 3 or 6 months. I said, “Even once a year, it would be great to see a new face come through the church doors for our Divine Mercy Prayer Ministry.” I told them, “I know many of you pray the chaplet on your own and that’s wonderful, but Jesus requested that we pray it together in church also.
When the meeting was over, some of the D of I officers asked why I didn’t encourage our guests from the other counties to form their own Divine Mercy group. This bothered me. For one thing, I didn’t know D of I members from other parishes were going to be at this meeting. But I wondered why would I encourage others to start a Divine Mercy ministry at their parish when only a tiny percent of our parishioners are interested it praying the chaplet together?
It can be disheartening but I’m never going to quit. I won’t allow myself to get discouraged.
But something cool happened last Friday that I especially wanted to share with you, Father. Pat and I were the only ones in church for Divine Mercy. Mary usually comes and Ollie sometimes comes, so we waited a bit. Finally we started to pray when we heard a voice behind us. I stopped praying and turned around to see who it was. The lady looked familiar. I asked if she was a parishioner. She told me she was from All Saints Parish. She heard my talk at the last D of I meeting at St. Charles and was touched. She apologized for taking several weeks before joining us. I told her we were so happy she came. She said she plans to try to come regularly. She said there were a couple of others who might start coming with her. Pat and I were excited and happy about this, but even if she never comes again. I appreciate so much that someone made the effort.
Every week I pray that more people will come. I arrive early to pray the chaplet first by myself for this intention. Then when we pray together, we pray for our personal intentions and for the whole parish. God is good.
Divine Mercy Update December 27, 2016
The lady from All Saints Parish has not returned to pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet. I thought she might have trouble finding time to come. It is a half hour drive. But two weeks ago, a friend from our parish came to our Divine Mercy Ministry. She has never joined us before, but I didn’t think too much about this. I was just happy to see her. But then she didn’t come the week after and I was a little let down. I realized later that she was also at the D of I meeting when I gave the talk, where I encouraged the members to mark their calendars and at least come once in a while. Maybe she’s one of the ones who will come when she can fit it in her schedule.
More good news! Today I looked up All Saints Church website to check Mass times, since Father is on a mission trip to Haiti with a few other parishioners. I went to Mass at All Saints this evening and picked up a bulletin. I was happy and surprised to see a new announcement in their latest bulletin: “Divine Mercy Chaplet - Everyone is welcome to join us each Friday at 3:00 PM in the church for the recitation of the Divine Mercy Chaplet. Our Lord Jesus revealed to St. Faustina this powerful prayer that He wanted everyone to say.” It was posted in Spanish as well, “Divina Misericordia – Todos estan invitados para recitan la Coronilla de la Divina Misericordia cada viernes a las 3:00 PM en la iglesia. Nuestro Señor Jesus revelo esta oración ponderosa Sta. Faustina el quiere que todos lo reciten.”
Thank you Jesus! All Saints is a larger parish than St. Charles. St. Faustina is still at work. Perhaps after the New Year, I’ll get our group together to join the group at All Saints, so we can pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet together to encourage and support each other.