Photo: Felix Carroll
Bryan Thatcher, with his assistant Pauline Di Pietro, at EADM headquarters in Riverview, Fla. With the help of world maps, they can track the spread of Divine Mercy around the world through prayer cenacles.
Eucharist Apostles of The Divine Mercy in Gisozi/Kigali.
The new Eucharistic Apostles of The Divine Mercy cenacle in Rususa, Rwanda.
The new cenacle being formed in Hoorn, The Netherlands.
By Bryan Thatcher, MD (Nov 21, 2008)
Around the world, people are talking about Divine Mercy now more than ever. And more than ever, they are making Divine Mercy a part of their lives. A big reason for this is due to the growth of Divine Mercy cenacles.
What is a Divine Mercy Cenacle? It is a group of people who meets weekly for song, prayer, and discussion on Scripture and the writings of St. Maria Faustina Kowalska, known as the apostle of Divine Mercy. The revelations given to St. Faustina are excellent for spiritual growth and give a deeper understanding of our merciful Lord.
The Divine Mercy cenacle program was designed by the Eucharistic Apostles of The Divine Mercy (EADM), an apostolate of the Congregation of Marians of the Immaculate Conception. Founded in 1996, one of EADM's goals is to spread the Real Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist and the message of Divine Mercy, primarily through its Divine Mercy cenacle program.
For more information on starting a cenacle or joining a cenacle in your area, visit EADM online, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
To date, there are more than 3,000 cenacles in the United States alone and thousands more in more than 30 other countries. The growth of cenacles continues as people thirst to hear God's great mercy. The growth also continues due to the help of people like Terry Muzones, from Illinois. She recently traveled to the Netherlands and Rwanda to spread Divine Mercy and assist in cenacle formation. She wrote to us and told about some of her experiences:
I was in Rwanda on October 5, and the feast of St. Faustina was celebrated in the parish of Kabuga, which is the future site of the Shrine of The Divine Mercy in Rwanda. It was attended by people from Rwanda, and those coming from as far as Congo, Uganda, Burundi, and Kenya. The Mass was followed by exposition and procession of the Blessed Sacrament, and lasted for four hours! I was given the honor to speak to the whole congregation regarding the EADM ministry. The visit to Rwanda was very successful and resulted in the formation of three groups. Here are details about each group.
The first group of Eucharistic Apostles of The Divine Mercy is in Gisozi/Kigali, Rwanda. Gisozi is a town next to Kigali, the capital of Rwanda. The facilitator of the group is Hakizimana Emmanuel. It was his dream to form a group devoted to The Divine Mercy and did not know where to start. I offered to go to Rwanda to help them organize a cenacle and get started on EADM. The Holy Spirit must have united us in Rome during the [World Apostolic Congress on Mercy last spring] because that was where I met Immanuel and Fr. Juvenal, who hosted my stay in Rwanda. The first meeting was held at his house and attended by about 18 people from the Gisozi and Kigali area. One of the guests was from Uganda, and another was headed for India. Both expressed their interest in starting a cenacle in their respective areas. It was an inspiring evening because everybody learned how to say the Divine Mercy Chaplet. I also emphasized the importance of EADM's Formation Manual as a tool to guide them in their weekly cenacle, the readings from the Diary of Sister Faustina, the Bible, and the Catechism of the Catholic Church. They all believed that their devotion to The Divine Mercy will help them in the healing process, reconciliation, and unification. This group will be working with Fr. Pierre Claver Nkundiye of the Parish in Rususa, Rwanda.
The second group of Eucharistic Apostles of The Divine Mercy was formed in Rususa, Rwanda. It is located towards the southern part of Rwanda towards Butare and the Nyungwe forest. The devotion to The Divine Mercy is alive and strong in Rususa, under the guidance of Fr. Pierre Claver Nkundiye. I gave a speech at the parish with the help of Callixte Harelimana, my interpreter, regarding EADM and how they can start a cenacle. One of the highlights of the presentation was the topic on the Real Presence of Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament.
Father Claver confirmed that the group (about 350 members) would like to be members of EADM. I left him with the novena and chaplet and the Formation Manual to guide them and help strengthen their spirituality. They will incorporate the Formation Manual into what they are already doing as a group. What is so great about this group is that they are helping each other heal from the effects of the genocide in 1994 through acts of kindness and forgiveness. They have a "cooperative system" where everyone helps each other, either by tilling the land, or selling clothes made by the members. Not only do they have a sewing center, but they also opened up a small restaurant and a store to sell their products. The devotion to The Divine Mercy has unified a once divided country, and through an ongoing process of forgiveness and reconciliation, members have already experienced healing in their heart and soul. Father Claver felt that this is a miracle!
The third group formed of Eucharistic Apostles of The Divine Mercy is in Gisenyi, Rwanda. The facilitator of this group is Theogene Kahiyura. More information will be forthcoming on this group once I get an update.
The fourth group is located in Purmerend, The Netherlands! The facilitator in Purmerend is Patty Baquilala. The following write-up is from a Malou Pimentel, a member: "Last May 24, 2008, Holland welcomed EADM through the talk of Terry Muzones, representing EADM from the National Shrine of The Divine Mercy in Stockbridge, Mass., U.S.A. She gave the talk to a group of parishioners of the San Nicolas & Sta. Catarina parish in Purmerend. The parish is under the care of Rev. Fr. Julius Elferink who was just so happy to open the doors to the devotion to The Divine Mercy. Purmerend is a suburb city to the northwest province of Holland. It is a 20-minute car drive from Amsterdam. It was indeed a very enlightening talk for us who still desire to learn more the wonderful devotion. Commitment is the key word that Terry emphasized to everyone. The ambiance of the talk was like the 'first Christian' who opened their hearts to something great about the Lord on that First Pentecost day. We are grateful for the time Terry was with us. Divine Mercy became a deeper reality. She explained to us profoundly the importance of Divine Mercy in our lives today. She powered us up with her personal experiences. Now, the parish priest is enthusiastic to begin the EADM. That makes a big difference. Yes, we are on our way to make Divine Mercy sparkle in this part of the planet."
Another group that is in the process of building a cenacle is in Hoorn, The Netherlands. Malou Pimentel, a member of the Pumerend group, is beginning the process with the help of Fr. Elferink in Purmerend.
Dr. Bryan Thatcher is the founder of EADM.