||Bishop Robert C. Morlino celebrates the Mass for Divine Mercy Sunday at St. Aloysius Church in Sauk City with priests of the Society of Jesus Christ the Priest concelebrating. (Catholic Herald photo/Joe Ptak)
SAUK CITY -- Divine Mercy Sunday was celebrated on April 11 at St. Aloysius Church in Sauk City and may be best portrayed by the results that followed.
Joyous families, couples, and individuals with uplifted hearts and bright smiles left Sauk City and drove back to their homes as far away as Milwaukee or Janesville with memories of an afternoon that had touched their souls and left them changed.
Hundreds of people poured into St. Aloysius Church to receive the benefits offered by Jesus on Divine Mercy Sunday.
Pope John Paul II declared in the Great Jubilee Year 2000 that the Sunday after Easter would from then on be known as Divine Mercy Sunday in reference to the many revelations received by St. Faustina. Jesus told St. Faustina in 1931 that the feast of Divine Mercy would be a very special day when “all the divine floodgates through which graces flow are opened.” Jesus promised that, “The soul that will go to Confession and receive Holy Communion shall obtain the complete forgiveness of sins and punishment.”
People from our diocese and beyond took advantage of this incredible promise and the additional Plenary Indulgence on the great Feast of Divine Mercy Sunday.
That afternoon, an introductory video and reflection by Fr. Jared Hood in the school gym began the celebration. This was followed by a procession to the church with the Divine Mercy Image and a first class relic of St. Faustina, which were then made available for veneration throughout the day.
Five confessionals were open to those who wished to receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Priests from the order of the Society of Jesus Christ the Priest were all available to hear Confessions: Fr. Jared Hood, Fr. Faustino Ruiz, Fr. Miguel Galvez, Fr. Pedro Escribano, and Fr. John Del Priore. Following a brief reflection by Fr. Rick Heilman, pastor of St. Mary Parish in Pine Bluff and St. Ignatius Parish in Mt. Horeb, he also became available to hear Confessions.
The Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, the Holy Rosary, and the Chaplet of Divine Mercy were followed by Benediction and the Most Holy Sacrifice of the Mass celebrated by Bishop Robert C. Morlino and concelebrated by Fr. Jared Hood, Fr. Faustino Ruiz, and Fr. Pedro Escribano.
Throughout the afternoon, refreshments and additional video presentations were offered as well as a wide selection of free blessed rosaries, medals, scapulars, books, pictures, Divine Mercy T-shirts, and other unique items.
The organizers of the event wish to thank all who were able to participate and receive the joyous benefits offered on Divine Mercy Sunday. They also wish to apologize to those who may have been moved to other confessional lines as Mass approached and plan to correct this situation in future years. They take great delight in envisioning another wondrous celebration on Divine Mercy Sunday in 2011 and suggest www.familyland.org as a helpful resource.