April 5, 2020
3:00 p.m. on Good Friday is the Hour of Mercy, because at this hour Jesus died to save us from our sins. Jesus often works powerfully in our lives during the three o’clock hour. I have seen this many times in my ministry.
Once I was invited into the hospital to see a man who was dying; his wife called me in, but the dying man wanted nothing to do with Jesus, the Church, or a Catholic priest. Nevertheless, he consented to pray the Our Father with me. I gave him my card and told him he could call anytime and I would return. Then I left the room--it was 3:00 PM.
As I left, I knew that God had his eye on this man. When a priest is called out at the three o’clock hour, it is always a sign from God! Sometime later, I received a call from him at 11:30 at night on an evening when I had expected to be travelling but was detained unexpectedly. I did go to his home, heard his confession, anointed him, gave him communion, and then he died. The Lord was with him in the Hour of His Mercy.
Good Friday is the beginning of the Divine Mercy Novena that our Lord revealed to St. Faustina Kowalska in her Diary: Divine Mercy in My Soul. It is excellent spiritual reading. In this diary, Our Lord gave daily intentions for the nine days between Good Friday and Divine Mercy Sunday. I am reprinting them here (#s 1210-1228 in the diary). Perhaps you have an intention that you would like to commend to Jesus by means of this powerful novena. In these daily intentions, it is Jesus speaking to the soul. These prayers are said ideally at 3:00 PM and can include the Divine Mercy Chaplet (see below).
Good Friday: Today, bring to me all mankind, especially all sinners, and immerse them in the ocean of my mercy. In this way you will console me in the bitter grief into which the loss of souls plunges me.
Second Day: Today, bring to me the souls of priests and religious, and immerse them in my unfathomable mercy. It was they who gave me the strength to endure my bitter Passion. Through them, as through channels, my mercy flows out upon mankind.
Third Day: Today, bring to me all devout and faithful souls, and immerse them in the ocean of my mercy. These souls brought me consolation on the Way of the Cross. They were that drop of consolation in the midst of an ocean of bitterness.
Fourth Day: Today, bring me the pagans and those who do not yet know me. I was thinking also of them during my bitter passion, and their future zeal comforted my heart. Immerse them in the ocean of my mercy.
Fifth Day: Today, bring to me the souls of heretics and schismatics, and immerse them in the ocean of my mercy. During my bitter passion they tore at my Body and my Heart; that is, my church. As they return to unity with the church, my wounds heal, and in this way they alleviate my passion.
Sixth Day: Today, bring me the meek and humble souls and the souls of little children, and immerse them in my mercy. These souls most closely resemble my heart. They strengthened me during my bitter agony. I saw them as earthly angels, who would keep vigil at my altars. I pour out upon them whole torrents of grace. Only the humble soul is able to receive my grace. I favor humble souls with my confidence.
Seventh Day: Today, bring to me the souls who especially venerate and glorify my mercy, and immerse them in my mercy. These souls sorrowed most over my passion and entered most deeply into my Spirit. They are living images of my compassionate heart. These souls will shine with a special brightness in the next life. Not one of them will go into the fire of hell. I shall particularly defend each one of them at the hour of death.
Eighth Day: Today, bring to me the souls who are in the prison of purgatory, and immerse them in the abyss of my mercy. Let the torrents of my blood cool down their scorching flames. All these souls are greatly loved by me. They are making retribution to my justice. It is in your power to bring them relief. Draw all the indulgences from the treasury of my church and offer them on their behalf. Oh, if you only knew the torments they suffer, you would continually offer for them the alms of the spirit and pay off their debt to my justice.
Ninth Day: Today, bring to me souls that have become lukewarm, and immerse them in the abyss of my mercy. These souls wound my heart most painfully. My soul suffered the most dreadful loathing in the Garden of Olives because of lukewarm souls.
The Chaplet of Divine Mercy is very simple to say, but yet very powerful. Using the beads of the rosary, it begins with the Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be and the Apostles Creed.
On the large beads, this prayer is said: Eternal Father, I offer you the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of your Beloved Son and our Lord Jesus Christ in reparation for the outrages, the sacrileges, and the indifferences by which He Himself is offended. And by the infinite merits of his Most Sacred Heart and the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I beg of you the conversion of poor sinners.
On the 10 smaller beads, this prayer is said: For the sake of his sorrowful passion, have mercy on us and on the whole world.
At the end, this prayer is said three times: Holy God, Holy Omnipotent, Holy Immortal One, have mercy on us and on the whole world!