Saturday, April 14, 2007

Divine Mercy...

Tomorrow is Divine Mercy Sunday in the Roman Catholic calendar. Sr Faustina, who unknowingly I think founded this feast, recorded in her diary Jesus speaking these words to her: "My mercy is so great that no mind, be it of man or of angel, will be able to fathom it throughout all eternity."

Tomorrow, let's remember the mercy of Jesus that informed all his relationships, and even the most seemingly casual of contacts, like the woman at the well in John 4. And as we remember how the Lord himself said, (Matthew 5:7) "Blessed are the merciful, for they will receive mercy," let's recall again the words of St Isaac of Nineveh, the solitary, and sometime reluctant Bishop, of the 7th century AD:

An elder was once asked, “What is a merciful heart?” He replied:

It is a heart on fire for the whole of creation, for humanity, for the birds, for the animals, for demons, and for all that exists. By the recollection of them the eyes of a merciful person pour forth tears in abundance. By the strong and vehement mercy that grips such a person’s heart, and by such great compassion, the heart is humbled and one cannot bear to hear or to see any injury or slight sorrow in any in creation.

For this reason, such a person offers up tearful prayer continually even for irrational beasts, for the enemies of the truth, and for those who harm her or him, that they be protected and receive mercy. And in like manner such a person prays for the family of reptiles because of the great compassion that burns with without measure in a heart that is in the likeness of God.”

and let's think again about the depths hidden in the few words of the Jesus Prayer, "Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner"...

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