Ideas for getting your whole parish involved.
With your pastor's approval and the support of parish teams, you can help prepare your parish to receive special graces on Divine Mercy Sunday. Make sure to follow your parish's procedures. (See our sample planning checklist.) Here are some tried and true methods to get parishioners involved.
Tell Parish Groups and Committees
The celebration of Divine Mercy Sunday can involve several groups representing different areas of parish life and liturgy. Share information to improve coordination and participation.
Gathering as a community to share a day of joy is one way to celebrate the gift of complete forgiveness of sin and punishment on Divine Mercy Sunday.
Incorporate traditional costume, décor, and music into the celebration. Consider offering bi-lingual readings during the Liturgy. Encourage children to discover the roots of their ethnic and faith heritage.
Before the Mass begins, acknowledge the First Communicants and note that the Eucharist is the greatest act of mercy our Lord is giving to them as well as to all who will receive Holy Communion. The Divine Mercy Image can be carried in the entrance and closing procession, followed by First Communicants. Offer Divine Mercy prayercards to all in attendance.
Divine Mercy Sunday is an ideal day to ask the Lord for grace to help the confirmandi live out the responsibilities of the Faith.
Making or renewing a consecration to our Lord or the Blessed Virgin Mary ("Mother of Mercy") also is appropriate on Divine Mercy Sunday. Groups might consider having the consecration at the 3 o'clock "Hour of Mercy," the time of Christ's death on the cross in atonement for sin.
Groups having a retreat on Divine Mercy Sunday benefit not only from the retreat itself, but most of all from receiving God's grace being poured out in accordance with Jesus' promise.
Activities for Lent and Easter Week
Penance Service and added opportunities for the Sacrament of Reconciliation. (Read about Mother of Mercy Messenger's live program for Parish Renewal and Penance Service.)
Special Prayer, such as The Divine Mercy Novena.
Study Groups or group viewings of DVDs about Divine Mercy. (See recommended materials.)
Invite the Experts
The Marians and their apostolates bring the ABCs of Divine Mercy to parishes across the country. See presenters and themes.