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Thank God always for the happiness and beauty of life - it is beautiful.
Venerable Mary Potter's Last Words.

Reflection - ‘MERCY’ June 2016 by Sr Mary Clare Wilson LCM

When Pope Francis announced the celebration of the Jubilee Year of Mercy in his encyclical Misericordiae Vultus, he called each of us to turn our minds and hearts to ‘mercy’, asking us to explore the concept of mercy in our lives, the receiving and then the giving of God’s love and mercy to others, as the way we give thanks to God for his gifts to each one. ‘In mercy we find proof of how God loves us, He gives his entire self always, freely, asking nothing in return.’

During this Holy Year we are called to keep alive the desire to welcome the gift of the mercy of God which he offers to each one and to the whole world.

Mercy is the free gift of God. The Father is the fount of Mercy, and as our bountiful God, there are no limits to the outpouring of that mercy; He is perpetually offering and giving the gift of Mercy to his children, in and through the person of Jesus, his Son, our Lord.

After his ministry preaching of the Father’s love for us, Jesus comes to the final moment when on Calvary, he becomes the fount of God’s mercy for us modelling for us the way we are called to be love and mercy for others.

These truths we know and have known since our early days of being children of God and followers of Jesus. We ‘know’ of God’s mercy. I believe that this Jubilee Year of Mercy is calling us to come to know mercy not only in our minds, but in our hearts and whole beings, so that in our daily lives we may respond to our brothers and sisters with mercy and love, and so that this is our response to all we encounter – to all God’s children. This means that we are called to live lives of intimate communion with Jesus.

As Christ’s disciples we are channels of God’s mercy to humankind. For us to be transmitters of God’s mercy, we must have an awareness of the gift, and its relationship to God and to those for whom it is given. Thus, we must ‘receive’ the gift of mercy being offered, with open hearts and minds, and be ready to respond wherever and whenever we are called. Often we focus on ‘giving’ to others, but first we must receive, and know the gift ourselves, before we can give to others..

To ‘receive’ a gift, is to make it one’s own; we need to know it, understand it, appreciate it, and then allow it to challenge us, and to change us in the ways we need, to relate and respond to others with God’s gift. It must be valued and understood, as far as we are able, to know the bountiful gifts God offers us each day of our lives. It is only in, through and with the person of Jesus, that we can truly be merciful.

And each has to remember that ‘God has appointed us to be His Mercy to others’ (LCM Motto 2016).

Sr Mary Clare Wilson LCM