Saint Faustyna Kowalska

Sister Faustyna Kowalska

"He accompanied me across all the deserts and through all dangers.
I see clearly that God alone could have led me through
such great perils unharmed, with my soul untarnished
and passing victoriously through all difficulties,
immense though they were."—Maria Faustyna
of the Blessed Sacrament
Divine Mercy in My Soul

Faustyna Kowalska, the world-famous apostle of the Divine Mercy was born on August 25, 1905 in Poland, in the village of Glogowiec, in the Swinice Warckie parish (about 50 km outside the city of Lódz), as the third of ten children in the family of Marianna and Stanislaw Kowalski. She attended school for less than three years. Subsequently, she worked as a charwoman in the households of well-to-do families in Aleksandrów Lódzki, Lódz and Ostrówek in the Klembów county near Warsaw.

On August 1, 1925, when she was 20 years old, she joined the Congregation of the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy. In the course of the thirteen years she spent in the Congregation, she stayed in a number of its houses: in Krakow (the longest), Vilno, Plock and Warsaw, where she worked as a cook, gardener and gatekeeper.

She suffered from tuberculosis of the lungs and of the alimentary canal. She also experienced great spiritual tribulations, as she had offered her life in sacrifice for poor sinners, particularly those who faced the prospect of being deprived of the grace of salvation.

Sr. Faustyna's life, which at first glance seems so grey and monotonous, was filled with an extraordinary depth of mystical experience. She was endowed with many special graces—among others with the gift of contemplation, concealed stigmata, bilocation, the gift of prophecy, of being able to read human souls, and of mystical betrothal and nuptials—all of which enabled her to attain the heights of unity with God on earth.

Divine Mercy

The Lord Jesus chose Sr. Faustyna as the Apostle and "Secretary" of His Mercy, so that she could tell the world about this great message: "In the Old Covenant I sent prophets wielding thunderbolts to My people. Today I am sending you with My mercy to the people of the whole world. I do not want to punish aching mankind, but I desire to heal it, pressing it to My Merciful Heart." (Diary 1588)—the Lord Jesus told Sister Faustyna (Dz. 1588).

Sister Mary Faustyna died of tuberculosis on 5 October 1938, at a convent in Krakow, Poland. She was buried in the convent chapel beneath the image of the Divine Mercy. She was beatified on April 18, 1993.

On April 30, 2000, Pope John Paul II canonized Maria Faustyna Kowalska, Virgin, of the Sisters of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Mercy.

Sister Faustyna Kowalska

Brother Lawrence Therese of Lisieux

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