Summary: Divine Mercy Sunday is the Sunday after Easter
To better get a grasp of what is Divine Mercy, we could apply “homeopathic theory” to our situation.
It will take a dose of what made us sick to cure us.
Our sins are what made us sick, and are what drove Jesus to experience his Passion, but His resurrection and glorified wounds heal us with Divine Mercy.
First, the dosage:
1). The scourging with sharp pellets which hung from the ends of leather strips and slung violently against his uncovered body, cutting deeply and puncturing.
2). The crucifixion with a single iron nail through the ankle bones, nails through the wrists.
The third and final phase of the execution was the breaking of the legs, which was done to make certain that no one was removed from the cross until they were dead.
However, Scripture tells us that when they came to Jesus, and saw that he was already dead, they did not break his legs; but one of the soldiers opened his side with a lance, and immediately there came out blood and water (John 19:34).
When asked about the meaning of the rays from His pierced Heart, Jesus explained to St. Faustina, "The pale ray stands for the Water which makes souls righteous. The red ray stands for the Blood which is the life of souls. ... These two rays issued forth from the very depths of My tender mercy when My agonized Heart was opened by a lance on the Cross" (Diary, 299).
These then are the active ingredients of Divine Mercy: the blood and the water, communicated to us by the Holy Spirit.
1 John 5:7-8 says: For there are three that testify: the Spirit and the water and the blood; and the three are in agreement.
The early Christians writers noted that the water represents the spiritual cleansing through the Word of God, called the washing by the Word, followed by regeneration or being born again by water in baptism (St. John Chrysostom).
The washing of the word is from Ephesians 5:26, which is the ongoing remedy that can take the desire for sin away from us by the inner conviction of the Word of God, which continually washes.
The other active ingredient of Divine Mercy is the blood, which is the Eucharist. We receive Jesus: Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity with the reception of the holy Eucharist.
So our healing today is that Jesus promised that “The soul that will go to Confession and receive Holy Communion shall obtain the complete forgiveness of sins and punishment.”(Diary 699). He went on to say, “I want to grant a complete pardon to the souls that will go to Confession and receive Holy Communion on the Feast of My Mercy.” (Diary 1109)
The words, “complete pardon” or “total pardon” only happens once in baptism, which is the gateway sacrament, received only once whereby all temporal punishment and the forgiveness of sins are washed away forever.
For sins committed and confessed after baptism, there is the need for penance, reparation, satisfaction, expiation even after God freely forgives the sin and thereby takes away the guilt.
The great news is that here, on Divine Mercy Sunday, we receive the effects of baptism whereby all sins including temporal punishment are removed. To receive those special graces — "the complete forgiveness of sins and punishment" ... in other words, a complete renewal of baptismal grace in our hearts — all we need to do is to receive Holy Communion in a state of grace on Divine Mercy Sunday, with trust in our Lord's great mercy.
Whether your last confession was 10, 20, 30, or even more days before today, on Divine Mercy Sunday, as long as you do not have the stain of unconfessed mortal sin on your soul, then you are spiritually alive in Christ and able to receive His special grace from Holy Communion on this great feast day of Divine Mercy Sunday.
Jesus told St. Faustina about the image of Divine Mercy, "I am offering people a vessel with which they are to keep coming for graces to the fountain of mercy. That vessel is this image with the signature: 'Jesus, I trust in you'" (Diary, 327).
When we exist as a forgiven people we are able to be at peace with our histories, so that now God’s life determines our whole way of being—our character. We no longer need to deny our past, or tell ourselves false stories, as now we can accept what we have been without the knowledge of our sin destroying us because we have received Divine Mercy.
Key thought: Victorious but not unscarred!
Divine Mercy is available to us because Jesus carries these marks of his crucifixion with Him even when he ascends to heaven (Rev. 5:6). The wound on Jesus’ resurrected body reveal that he is forever fixed in the act of love in which he died. They are forever present before the Father as “expiation for our sins, and....for those of the whole world” (1 John 2:2)