Did You Know Both Jesus and Mary Appeared to St. Faustina?
Our Lord wasn’t Sister Faustina’s only visitor from Heaven — Our Lady also came with messages about Divine Mercy.
Everyone who has heard of the Divine Mercy devotion knows that Jesus appeared to St. Faustina many times. But how many realize our Blessed Mother also appeared to her on several occasions? Let’s look at a few of them.
‘I am not only the Queen of Heaven, but also the Mother of Mercy and your Mother.’ In a vision Faustina saw while praying a novena of “Hail, Holy Queens,” she heard the Blessed Virgin Mary speak these words to her confessor. Faustina wrote that she saw “the Mother of God with the Infant Jesus in Her arms, and … my confessor kneeling at Her feet and talking with her. I did not understand what he was saying to Her, because I was busy talking with the Infant Jesus, who came down from His Mother’s arms and approached me. I could not stop wondering at His beauty.” Then she heard Our Lady speak those important words.
We know that in the traditional Litany of Loreto, one of the invocations to Our Lady is “Mother of Mercy.” Therefore, if Jesus is the Divine Mercy, his mother (and ours) is the Mother of Mercy too.
“Mother of mercy: our Lady of mercy, or Mother of divine mercy,” is what St. John Paul II wrote in his encyclical Dives in Misericordia (Rich in Mercy) in one description of Mary. He also reminded us that “Mary proclaimed on the threshold of her kinswoman’s house: ‘His mercy is ... from generation to generation.’” Our Lady was already proclaiming God’s, and her Son’s, mercy.
Another time Faustina saw our Blessed Mother was Aug. 5, 1935, which then happened to be the Feast of Our Lady of Mercy. During Mass she saw the Blessed Virgin Mary who was “unspeakably beautiful. She came down from the altar to my kneeler,” Faustina wrote in the Diary, “held me close to herself and said to me, I am Mother to you all, thanks to the unfathomable mercy of God. Most pleasing to Me is that soul which faithfully carries out the will of God.”
“She gave me to understand that I had faithfully fulfilled the will of God and had thus found favor in His eyes. Be courageous. Do not fear apparent obstacles, but fix your gaze upon the Passion of My Son, and in this way you will be victorious.
Jesus identified himself to St. Faustina as “the Divine Mercy,” and he gave us what he called his “signature” under his image — “Jesus, I Trust in You.”
Jesus also emphasized, “The graces of My mercy are drawn by means of one vessel only, and that is – trust.”
Our Blessed Mother also brought this message to Faustina. On Aug. 15, 1936, at Mass just before the elevation of the Host, Faustina said, “God’s presence pervaded my soul, which was drawn to the altar. Then I saw the Mother of God with the Infant Jesus. The Infant Jesus was holding onto the hands of Our Lady. A moment later, the Infant Jesus ran with joy to the center of the altar, and the Mother of God said to me, See with what assurance I entrust Jesus into his hands. In the same way, you are to entrust your soul and be like a child to him. After these words, my soul was filled with unusual trust.”
Sometime earlier, Mary came to visit Faustina. She seemed hesitant to speak to the nun at first, but after Faustina’s entreaties to tell her what was on her mind, Mary looked at her “with a warm smile and said, You are going to experience certain sufferings because of an illness and the doctors; you will also suffer much because of the image, but do not be afraid of anything.”
The next day she fell ill and suffered much. Faustina was already learning to trust. “During these terrible moments I said to God, ‘Jesus, who in the Gospel compare Yourself to a most tender mother, I trust in Your words because You are Truth and Life. In spite of everything, Jesus, I trust in You in the face of every interior sentiment which sets itself against hope. Do what You want with me; I will never leave You, because You are the source of my life.”
On March 22, 1936, Faustina arrived at Warsaw. On March 25, the Feast of the Annunciation, Our Lady appeared to her. Faustina wrote:
I saw the Mother of God, who said to me, ‘Oh, how pleasing to God is the soul that follows faithfully the inspirations of His grace! I gave the Savior to the world; as for you, you have to speak to the world about His great mercy and prepare the world for the Second Coming of Him who will come, not as a merciful Savior, but as a just Judge. Oh, how terrible is that day! Determined is the day of justice, the day of divine wrath. The angels tremble before it. Speak to souls about this great mercy while it is still the time for [granting] mercy. If you keep silent now, you will be answering for a great number of souls on that terrible day. Fear nothing. Be faithful to the end. I sympathize with you.’
A year earlier, on the Feast of the Assumption, our Blessed Mother had told her while Faustina was praying in her cell:
My daughter, what I demand from you is prayer, prayer, and once again prayer, for the world and especially for your country. For nine days receive Holy Communion in atonement and unite yourself closely to the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. During these nine days you will stand before God as an offering; always and everywhere, at all times and places, day or night, whenever you wake up, pray in the spirit.
Another time Faustina heard our Blessed Mother instruct her:
The soul’s true greatness is in loving God and in humbling oneself in His presence, completely forgetting oneself and believing oneself to be nothing, because the Lord is great, but He is well-pleased only with the humble, He always opposes the proud.
That certainly ties into trust. Do the proud really trust anyone but themselves?
In another appearance later, at time of the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, Our Lady gave Faustina another lesson along this similar path. She said told her:
I desire, My dearly beloved daughter, that you practice the three virtues that are dearest to Me — and most pleasing to God. The first is humility, humility, and once again humility; the second virtue, purity; the third virtue, love of God. As My daughter, you must especially radiate with these virtues.
We can look at one more lesson our Blessed Mother taught in another appearance on another Feast of the Assumption. She said to Faustina:
It is impossible for one to please God without obeying His holy will. My daughter, I strongly recommend that you faithfully fulfill all God’s wishes, for that is most pleasing in His holy eyes. I very much desire that you distinguish yourself in this faithfulness in accomplishing God’s will. Put the will of God before all sacrifices and holocausts.
We can see these lessons include, simply, prayer (which would include the Rosary and the Chaplet of Divine Mercy), humility, obedience to God’s will, and trust.
This warning was followed by an extra time of repentance and a time to change for mankind. And it took the Blessed Mother’s intervention. Faustina recorded this succinctly on Sept. 1, 1937:
I saw the Lord Jesus, like a king in great majesty, looking down upon our earth with great severity; but because of his Mother’s intercession He prolonged the time of His mercy.
Let’s turn to the Mother of Mercy to lead us on the path to trusting in, and accepting, her Son as the Divine Mercy.