My favorite Catholic saint is Saint Faustina, the wonderful, kind soul who heard wisdom directly from Jesus about His Divine Mercy. October 5th is her feast day! Even as a non-Catholic, St. Faustina and her feast day mean a lot to me.
Learning About Saint Faustina
Check out this great video on St. Faustina by the YouTube Channel Divine Mercy:
Jesus shared with St. Faustina profound messages about what His Mercy entails. St. Faustina wrote about these revelations in her Diary, a beautiful collection of comforting words straight from Jesus. National Catholic Register compiled a beautiful list of these messages in this article.
Besides her feast day, St. Faustina is also remembered on Divine Mercy Sunday, the first Sunday after Easter. Jesus told St. Faustina that on this day, His Mercy is poured out upon all those who approach Him. When He talked to St. Faustina about Divine Mercy Sunday, Jesus shared that He wishes for all souls to come to Him without fear.
It’s thanks to St. Faustina and Jesus that the short but beautiful phrase “Jesus, I trust in You” became famous. This is the message written under the original portrait of Jesus as the King of Divine Mercy.
Jesus taught St. Faustina the Divine Mercy Chaplet, which includes the “Eternal Father” prayer:
I offer you the Body and Blood,
Soul and Divinity
of Your Dearly Beloved Son,
Our Lord, Jesus Christ,
in atonement for our sins
and those of the whole world.”
–Eternal Father Prayer
Here’s a compilation of other prayers St. Faustina wrote down in her Diary, by Be Still:
What Faustina Means to Me
Content/Trigger Warning: Discussion of Suicide
I learned about St. Faustina when I was a senior in college. Reading quotes from her Diary put my heart at ease after I’d come to terms with my survivor’s guilt over Will, a high school classmate who took his life a few months after we graduated.
In fact, it was this exact day five years ago (on a Wednesday, too!) when I first came across St. Faustina’s legacy. It hit me like a ton of bricks that one of her titles is the “Secretary of Divine Mercy”. I’d been filled with anguish over not knowing what happened to Will after he died.
Coming across St. Faustina, St. Francis of Assisi (who I’ve read is a patron of those who die alone), and having a dream about searching for Will in Heaven (on Oct. 4th, St. Francis’ feast day) helped me find peace. I remember crying tears of relief when I read some of the quotes from St. Faustina’s Diary that discuss how deep God’s mercy is, deeper than we can understand in this life.
Religion has mishandled the topic of suicide so much. While it’s no doubt that suicide isn’t ever God’s will, His will isn’t to send suicide victims to Hell, either. At worst, suicide victims might go through Purgatory to let go of their burdens before entering Heaven.
I know that when my own time comes, I’ll be reunited with Will. While I still sometimes cry for him, there will be happy tears to be shed when I see him again.
Jesus Wants Us to Trust Him
On the morning of Christmas Eve, 2021, I had a tender dream about meeting Jesus, almost exactly like how He’s depicted in the Divine Mercy portrait. It was clear that He wanted everyone present to know that we could approach Him freely.
Jesus turned to me with the warmest smile and (I believe telepathically) told me that He was aware that I’d been afraid to approach Him. He wasn’t wrong, of course. I’d been having mean-spirited, nasty thoughts about the job I’d left just a couple of days prior. I was ashamed of being seemingly unwilling to let go of those slanderous thoughts.
He told me that I should never be afraid to talk to Him about anything and that I have no need to be afraid of being shamed. This dream has continually helped me move past my uncomfortable memories of my last job and also let go of my anger.
I’d argue that mercy and empathy go hand-in-hand. It’s really no surprise that Jesus excels at both!
None of us should ever believe that we’re somehow irredeemable or that God won’t hear the pleas of our hearts. All of us have the freedom to come to Him and trust Him with all the matters that weigh on our minds.
If you’d like to, here’s a short movie made in honor of Saint Faustina that beautifully summarizes her life by Vision Video:
Featured Image by Darte/Pixabay
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