Priest: post ‘Divine Mercy Image’ on front door for protection during coronavirus outbreak
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STOCKBRIDGE, MA, March 30, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) ― A priest is urging Christians to post an image of the Divine Mercy on the front doors of their homes to protect them and their families during the coronavirus pandemic.
In his March 26 “Seal the Doors” video, Fr. Chris Alar of the Marian Fathers of the Immaculate Conception asks listeners to place a copy of the Divine Mercy Image of Jesus on their front doors, facing outwards. He calls this response to the coronavirus “a simple but an incredibly powerful act of faith.”
The name of the initiative “Seal the Doors” comes from an invitation in the Magnificat missal: “Let us seal the doorposts of our inner thoughts with the protective Word of God.” This is a reference to Exodus 12:7, in which the Israelites are instructed to put blood from the lamb or goat of their Passover meal on their doorposts so that the Angel of Death will pass them by.
Speaking from the National Shrine of The Divine Mercy, Alar, 50, explains why the Divine Mercy Image is so important.
“The image represents the Lord, the Lamb of God sacrificed for us, from whose heart streams blood and water, the sign of God’s mercy upon the whole world,” he says.
“The Lord promises us through St. Faustina, that the soul that will venerate and honor this image will never perish. He also promises victory over our enemies already here on earth, especially at the hour of death, and to defend us as His own glory,” he continues.
“The Lord said, ‘By means of this image, I shall be granting many graces to souls, so let every soul have access to it’.”
Saint Faustina Kowalska, who was born in Głogowiec, Poland, lived from 1905 to 1938. In 1931, she experienced her first vision of the Divine Mercy: Our Lord Jesus with white and red rays emanating from his heart. She wrote in her diary that he instructed her to record him like this, saying “Paint an image according to the pattern you see, with the words "Jesus, I trust in You". I desire that this image be venerated, first in your chapel, and then throughout the world. I promise that the soul that will venerate this image will not perish.” Her visions persisted, and she spent the rest of her life promoting devotion to the Divine Mercy.
Her confessor, Blessed Fr. Michael Sopocko, wrote that the Lord later told the mystic that “when chastisements for sins come upon the whole world, and your own country will experience utter degradation, the only refuge will be trust in My Mercy.”
The Polish mystic reported that the Lord had said that He will protect the cities and homes in which the Divine Mercy image is found, and that He will protect the people who give it honor.
“Let everyone procure for their homes this image because there will yet come trials, and those homes and entire families and everyone individually who will hold this image of Mercy in deep reverence, I will preserve from every sort of misfortune,” St. Faustina recalled Him saying.
Fr. Alar tells laity in his video how they may licitly bless the image themselves, if they are unable to get a priest to do so. He notes, however, that honoring the Divine Mercy in this way may not be sufficient protection against the Covid-19 coronavirus.
“While this act of faith may not guarantee your family won’t be physically affected by the virus, it will guarantee that, by your trust in Jesus, you will obtain His promises of love and mercy, which will surround you and remain in you forever,” he says.
Alar was ordained a priest in May 2014. Before he answered his call (“I’m a late vocation”), he had a house, a business and a fiancée.
Today Alar rejects any suggestion that venerating the Divine Mercy Image is a particularly Polish devotion with less relevance to Americans and others in the world.
“Jesus, through the words he gave to Saint Faustina, emphasized that His Mercy is for the whole world,” he told LifeSiteNews.
Alar explained that Our Lord told St. Faustina that “a spark will come from Poland to prepare the world for My final coming.”
“Saint Faustina, Saint John Paul II, and the whole message of the Divine Mercy are the spark.”