We might be knee deep in dirty laundry; keeping kids quiet during mass or taking care of aged relatives and neighbors. These endless tasks seem like meaningless drudgery, but to God they are life-giving pearls of mercy.
Whether biological, spiritual, or material caregiver, single or married, all women are “moms” in some way. It is in our genetic make-up. A vocation, I believe, originating from Our heavenly Mother Mary. We are called to be merciful like our Mother.
The Year of Mercy has been taking off like a tidal wave across the globe. As Jesus said, “I have come to set the earth on fire, and how I wish it were already blazing!” (Luke 12:49). Women, we are called to set the world on fire with our daily simple acts of love and mercy to others.
That is why the book “Divine Mercy for Moms, Sharing the Lessons of St. Faustina” is for you. Authors Michele Faehnle and Emily Jaminet have penned this easy to read book detailing how to use our everyday acts of mothering to show mercy to our nuclear and extended families — to the world inside and outside our homes.
Faehnle and Jaminet, both young moms from Columbus, Ohio, met at Franciscan University in Steubenville in the late 1990s. Turns out God had a plan. A college classmate was Michael Gaitley whose name is synonymous with divine mercy. Gaitley, Marians of the Immaculate Conception, is author of several books including “33 Days to Morning Glory,” “Consoling the Heart of Jesus,” “Divine Mercy Explained, and “33 Days to Merciful Love.”
Later, after a chance meeting on social media, an editor with Ave Maria Press encouraged Faehnle and Jaminet to author “Divine Mercy for Moms.” Her inspiration proved right as the books have sold 5,000 copies to date. This work has helped numerous women receive and trust in God’s mercy for their families and for the world
DIVINE MERCY IN A NUTSHELL
In the 1930s Jesus appeared to Sr. Maria Faustina Kowalska, a nun from the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy in Poland, asking her to teach the world about his divine mercy. He instructed her to exercise mercy in three ways: through deeds, words, or prayers on behalf of her neighbor. We are called to do likewise. For instance, if someone is sick, you can visit with a meal, or send a mass card and pray, or reach out by phone or text.
“It’s taking the devotion and incorporating it in everyday life. We’re busy mom always constantly serving our families. If we unite our deeds, words, and prayers – everyday duties—with the sufferings of Christ we can bring great graces to them,” Faehnle explains.
As Gaitley puts it, “I believe that his (Jesus’s) first picks for this solemn mission, his desired ‘special ops,’ are those who are most forgotten, overlooked, and underappreciated – the ones who in the eyes of the world don’t amount to much…mothers.”
As moms we can gain great graces for ourselves and the world. We can use our everyday tasks, no matter in the living room or boardroom to transform our world and beyond. Changing diapers, cooking meals, doing laundry, or making important decisions in the workplace are all stepping stones to heaven when united with Christ’s sufferings.
“Moms do unseen deeds, words, and prayers to save the world and offer them up. These are the things that will save the world. We can live our vocation out more fully and bring sanctity to our house,” Faehnle states.
THE CHAPLET AND IMAGE
In addition, Jesus asks us to pray the Chaplet of Mercy at 3:00 pm, the hour He died. This is the Hour of Mercy when the floodgates of His mercy are open. Moms can pray it with their families during the 3:00 hour or when possible. Here is an audio and video version to pray along with.
If you cannot stop at 3 pm to pray, recite the Chaplet anyway or as a bumper sticker states, “It’s 3:00 somewhere, say the Chaplet.” LOL!
For working women, “The Chaplet Divine Mercy is seven minutes long. You can say it before work or before bed. It is a quick, easy, and powerful prayer. There are many graces associated with the image (of Divine Mercy), Faehnle clarifies. “By bringing the image to your home, you invite Jesus to your home.”
The image of Divine Mercy shows Jesus with red and white rays illuminating from his heart. “The rays symbolize hope and healing, baptism, reconciliation and the Eucharist,” says the mother of four. He is pointing to his heart, beckoning us to come to him without fear. On the bottom an inscription is seared into our hearts, “Jesus I trust in You.” Need we further explanation? Sr. Faustina was directed by Jesus to have the vision of him painted because through this image, many graces would issue forth.
BOOK TRANSFORMS HEARTS
In a special way, this literary work has “spoken” to post-abortive women. “There is a message of love. The fact is that God does love us. Nothing you can do or say can change that. Jesus wants to wash us over with his merciful rays. The image is so powerful. Jesus is walking toward you and his rays are coming toward you,” says the co-author.
“This book lines up with post abortive moms so much – reaching those hurting and wounded – and give them the message of hope,” one woman writes.
Jaminet often says, “Were always looking at our own two feet. We need to look up,” according to Faehnle. In other words, we tend to focus on ourselves and our dilemma instead of bringing Divine Mercy to those we encounter.
FOR FURTHER INFO
To aid women in “looking up,” a group study guide complete with discussion questions is in the book’s appendix. In addition, prayers and how-to hints are also listed. For free videos, access divine mercy for moms.com. “Divine Mercy for Moms” can be purchased at Amazon and select bookstores.
Copyright 2016, Mary Mitchell
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