Events in the life and mission of St. Faustina

August 25, 1905

Helena Kowalska was born in Glogowiec, Poland; the third of ten children living off a small farm and her father's carpentry work.

August 27, 1905

Helena is baptized at St. Casimirís church in Swinice Warckie.


At the age of seven, Helena hears a voice calling her to religious life.


Helena receives first Holy Communion.


Helena begins her primary education, which lasts only two and a half years.
1920At age 15, Helena begins domestic work to support her large family.
1922Helena returns home, announces a desire to enter convent; her parents oppose; she works two years to help support her family.
July 1924Helena sees a vision of the scourged Christ who calls her to religious life.
Helena goes to Warsaw to search for a convent, and she works to support herself.
August 1925Helena is accepted by the Congregation of the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy; one month later she wants to leave for a stricter order.
April 30, 1926Helena receives habit and her religious name Maria Faustina.
April 3, 1927Sr. Faustina experiences spiritual dark night during novitiate.
April 16, 1928On Good Friday, she is engulfed by the flame of Divine Love.
April 30, 1928Sr. Faustina makes her first profession of temporary vows.
December 1928Newly elected Mother General Michaela Moraczewska is source of help and comfort to Sr. Faustina during her religious life.
October 1928-30Easily adaptable, Sr. Faustina is sent to work at various houses.
February 22, 1931Sr. Faustina sees a vision of Jesus who tells her to paint His image.
May 1, 1933Sr. Faustina takes her perpetual vows.
May 25, 1933Sr. Faustina goes to Vilnius where she receives many mystical experiences and is assisted by Fr. Michael Sopocko, a wise spiritual director.
January 2, 1934Sr. Faustina visits the artist Kazimirowski, who is to paint the image.
March 29, 1934Sr. Faustina offers herself for sinners, especially those who lack trust.
June 1934The painting of Divine Mercy is completed, but Sr. Faustina does not like it.
July 1934Beginning of Sr. Faustina's illness; she begins writing the Diary under obedience.

April 28, 1935
(Feast of Mercy)

Divine Mercy image is publicly venerated in Vilnius for the conclusion of the Jubilee Year of Redemption.
January 8, 1936Sr. Faustina informs the Bishop that Jesus requests the founding of an order.
May 11, 1936Sr. Faustina goes to Krakow; guided by Fr. Andrasz SJ; her health deteriorates.
September 1937Holy cards with the Divine Mercy image printed for first time.
September 1938Sr. Faustina prepares herself for death, and she asks pardon of the Congregation.
October 5, 1938Sr. Faustina makes final confession, and dies late in the evening.
October 7, 1938Funeral of Sr. Faustina, burial at the convent cemetery.
1940-1941Divine Mercy message spreads first among the victims of WWII.
April 1941Fr. Joseph Jarzebowski, MIC, brings the Divine Mercy message to the USA and the Congregation of Marians of the Immaculate Conception begins to spread the message in Polish.
1942-1959The Divine Mercy message spreads worldwide through the efforts of the Marians, who publish images and literature in many languages.
March 6, 1959Holy Office issues a notification banning Divine Mercy devotion.
October 21, 1965Informative Process of Sr. Faustina's life and virtues is opened by Cardinal Karol Wojtyla, Archbishop of Krakow, encouraged by Cardinal Ottaviani, the Prefect of the Holy Office.
September 1967Informative Process closes; Cardinal Wojtyla sends acts to Rome, January 31, 1968. The process of Beatification of Sr. Faustina is inaugurated.
April 15, 1978Prefect of Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith declares the Notification ban no longer binding.
October 16, 1978Cardinal Karol Wojtyla becomes Pope John Paul II.
July 12, 1979Marians receive an authoritative explanation of the Notification issued by the Prefect for the Doctrine of Faith stating that no impediments exist in the spread of the message and devotion to the Divine Mercy in the forms proposed by Sr. Faustina.
May 1980Marians publish critical edition of Sr. Faustina's Diary in Polish.
November 30, 1980Pope John Paul II issues encyclical on the Divine Mercy.
November 22, 1981Pope John Paul II visits the Shrine of Merciful Love in Collevalenza near Todi, Italy, stating that, "Right from the beginning of my ministry in St. Peter's See in Rome, I considered this message (of Divine Mercy) my special task."
1986Marians publish critical edition of Sr. Faustina's Diary in English.
April 10, 1991Pope John Paul II links the encyclical's message to Sr. Faustina.
March 7, 1992Decree of Heroic Virtues of Sr. Faustina is promulgated.
December 1992Miracle through intercession of Sr. Faustina is accepted.
April 18, 1993Sr. Faustina beatified in Rome on Second Sunday of Easter.
January 2000Second miracle through Bl. Faustina intercession is accepted.
April 30, 2000Bl. Faustina is canonized in Rome on Divine Mercy Sunday and Divine Mercy Sunday is proclaimed.
May 5, 2000Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments issues a Decree proclaiming the Second Sunday of Easter also as Divine Mercy Sunday.
December 2000The Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments listed the Devotion to the Divine Mercy in its Directory on Popular Piety and the Liturgy: Principles and Guidelines.
April 22, 2001Divine Mercy Sunday is celebrated officially for the first time by the universal Church.
May 13, 2001Congregation For The Clergy issues a document: "Priest of God, you embody the Mystery of Mercy."
August 18, 2002John Paul II consecrates the whole world to the Divine Mercy from The Divine Mercy Sanctuary in Krakow-Lagiewniki, the site of St. Faustina's tomb.
August 21, 2002Decree of the Apostolic Penitentiary issued on Indulgences attached to devotions in honor of Divine Mercy.