How Does One Experience God’s Mercy?

His Excellency Philippe Cardinal Barbarin, D.D. (R) with Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) President Most Rev. Socrates Villegas, D.D. during the Eucharistic Celebration on Day 2 of WACOM 4 in UST last January 17, 2017. Cardinal Barbarin in his talk on Day 5 at Las Casas Filipinas De Azucar, quoted Archbisop Villegas’ homily on Day 2, “The Divine Mercy is the nucleus and the center of our Faith.” (Photo credit: Annaliza Bruce)

Papal Envoy to the 4th World Apostolic Congress On Mercy (WACOM 4) Archbishop of Lyon France, His Excellency Philippe Cardinal Barbarin, D.D., gave five pointers on how to experience God’s Mercy during his talk last January 20, 2017 at the Las Casas Filipinas De Azucar, Bataan.

Specifically held at Las Casas’ Hotel De Oriente theatre, he enumerated that, first, completely love like God because sins and failures must not get in the way of love.

“Like the father of the prodigal sinner who was waiting for his son every evening looking for him, just waiting for him,” he said in French that was simultaneously translated in English by WACOM 4 Secretary General Rev. Fr. Patrice Chocholski on stage.

Second, he said, praise God out of reflecting the divine beauty in ourselves. Stating, “He (God) wants us to be precious, to be full of his beauty–unique beauty, everybody of us.”

The third advice is to always remember that God is slow to anger. He said that God’s anger is necessary for us to listen Him. He emphasized, “If once God gets angry with you, let him do…You need that.”

“He (God) has a great love–such a quantity of love that is without limit. It is like (an) overflowing mountain of love, flowing down to the world,” he continued with the fourth advice, which is to know God’s love for each one. While the fifth advice is to be faithful to God.

According to Barbarin, the two most beautiful parable of the Divine Mercy is Jesus’ parable of the Prodigal Son and that of the Good Samaritan. Both stories show the sinfulness of men and the mercy of God. Imitating Jesus, therefore, is showing mercy despite the unworthiness and sinfulness of men.

“So, we have to look at Jesus. Contemplate…Imitate him. The Savior that is Jesus, you be the one to care for Him,” he pointed out to the 5,000 Congress delegates present, “Look at those who are sick; those who despair; those who are dependent on alcoholic. Take care of them.”

“Why is the Church called the Church of the Mercy of God? Because the whole Mercy of God is in Jesus and because we are the Body of Christ. We would need the Church…to be open, that we may tell to all those who are suffering…’Come! Doors are open.’ ” he said.

Entitled, “Being sent as a Church of God’s Mercy to the World,” Cardinal Barbarin’s talk serves as the final symposium of the 5-day event of WACOM 4 that was held in various places in the Country: the Manila Cathedral, the University of Santo Tomas, the National Shrine and Parish of Padre Pio in Batangas, and the National Shrine and Parish of Divine Mercy in Bulacan prior to this one in Bataan. (~Jyn E. Aragon, MD)