By Father Joel de los Reyes
Divine Mercy Moments
It was a spiritually rich weeklong experience of our Divine Mercy Apostolate group of 36 members from Guam at the 4th World Apostolic Congress On Mercy (WACOM4) in the Philippines Jan. 16-20, 2017.
We were graciously welcomed as official Guam delegates by Fr. Prospero Tenorio, Rector of the Divine Mercy National Shrine in the Philippines and Secretary General of the World Apostolic Congress in Asia. He chaired the 4th World Apostolic Congress On Mercy with more than 10,000 local and foreign delegates from 60 countries worldwide.
We’re also grateful to Ms. Monina S. Tayanen, OCDS, our official contact person in the Divine Mercy National Shrine in Marilao, Bulacan. She’s also the Lay Coordinator of the World Apostolic Congress On Mercy-WACOM ASIA and Philippine Divine Mercy National Formation Director. She arranged our stay at the brand new, first class Windford Hotel in Sta. Cruz, Manila. William and Jen, staff of Island Quest Travel took good care of us from day one to the last day along with Alex our good bus driver. People like them truly reflect the spirit and mercy of God. In essence, they are practicing the mercy of God in their line of work.
We always prayed our communal morning Christian prayer, the Chaplet of Mercy and the Holy Rosary in the bus for we prepared prayer booklets for each delegate as we prepared for this very prestigious event. We had two pre-departure pilgrim’s Masses at San Vicente Church in Barrigada to seek the Lord’s blessing and guidance in our journey.
Our group was colorful and jolly in bright red jacket uniforms showing the beautiful logo of WACOM4. We sang religious hymns and old popular songs in the bus as we headed to the conference. Returning to our hotel in the evening, we would share our rich experiences with each other and lessons learned from various speakers. What emboldens us was our devotion to the Divine Mercy along with thousands from around the world recognizing and trusting in the mercy of the Lord.
We were in the same hotel with delegates from Malaysia and Papua New Guinea. It was a delightful experience of camaraderie from day to day, especially during breakfast in an atmosphere of joy and spirit of the Mercy. We had a souvenir photo with them, very nice and friendly people.
“Communion In Mercy, Mission Of Mercy” was the shining theme of this wonderful Divine Mercy gathering. We are all called to be witnesses of God’s mercy concretely in our lives in the service and love of our neighbor exemplified in the parable of the Good Samaritan. Regardless of who and what you are, God loves and welcomes you. He always searches for us when we get lost in life as seen in the parable of the Lost Coin and Lost sheep. The proof of God’s mercy is that He did not spare His only begotten Son, but gave Him up to us that we might have eternal life. God’s love is unconditional, given even to the most unworthy, and he gives it to the maximum.
All of us are sinners, prodigal children to whom God runs to meet with mercy and forgiveness. We are to be receivers and givers of the same mercy. We cannot be unsympathetic to their neighbors in need, for the love of God is only found in those who show mercy. (Misericordia ad Extra).
On the flip side, someone said that we must be a reflection of what we’d like to see in others. If we you want love, give love, if you want honesty, give honesty and if you want respect, give respect. You get in return what you give. If your absence doesn’t affect them, your presence never mattered. Do not be afraid to do something just because you’re scared of what people might say about you. Sometimes when you think things in your life are falling apart, they may actually be falling into place. You see, people come and go in your life, but the right ones will always stay.
Did someone say that a moment of patience in a moment of anger saves you a hundred moments of regret? Sometimes the hardest battle is between what you know in your head and what you feel in your heart. Does it relate to you? Amen on that folks!
In her diary, St. Faustina wrote Jesus’ words, “I demand from you deeds of mercy which are to arise out of love for Me.”