With everything going on during Holy Week, it often happens that I forget to start the Divine Mercy Novena on Good Friday. I don’t want that to happen to you this year, so—even though it’s Holy Week— I thought I’d devote today’s post to Divine Mercy.
But first, let us consider what’s at stake:
Recently I was reading in the news a story about a stabbing at a US school carried out by a 16 year old. Reading on, I discovered that students, staff, neighbors and law enforcement officials were all equally “baffled” that this particular student was capable such violence and aggression. He had no history of mental health issues; he wasn’t an “outcast.” He was, by all accounts, a normal teenager.
I don’t know this kid. I don’t know his story and therefore cannot make ANY sort of conclusions about why he did what he did. But I have to wonder, when presented with news story after news story in which seemingly “normal” people carry out all sorts of heinous crimes: Could it be that what we have come to call “normal” is in fact causing severe damage to the human person?
Let’s take a look at what “normal” has become—
- 52% of all marriages end in divorce. This means the majority of children are growing up in broken homes.
- 1 in 3 children in the United States grow up without the regular presence of a father in the home
- 68% of young adult men and 18% of young adult women use pornography at least once every week, with the majority of college students seeing nothing wrong with the casual use of pornography.
“…study after study has found that watching even non-violent porn is correlated with the user being more likely to use verbal coercion, drugs, and alcohol to push women into sex”
When all of this is considered “normal,” it becomes easier—for me, at least— to grasp why it’s becoming increasingly common for such horrible crimes to be carried out by seemingly “normal” people.
But let’s pause here and consider that…
Right now, a mother is reading this whose sweet baby’s father is no longer in the picture. Someone who has been hurt by divorce is reading these words. A person struggling with a pornography addiction. The list goes on, because in truth, ALL of our sins—no matter the scale—have contributed in some way to this new “normal.”
It would all seem like a message of total doom and gloom—were it not for the Divine Mercy of our Lord, who did not hesitate to take on the weight of it all in His Passion and death.
The message of Divine Mercy is the message of the Cross—that God’s mercy is infinitely greater than our sins, and that—if we are willing to let Him—He can and will transform even our biggest sins into victory.
But will we let Him?
Consider beginning the Divine Mercy Novena this Friday. But most importantly, consider accepting the mercy that Jesus longs to give you, and sharing that mercy with a world who so greatly needs Him.