MANILA, May 31, 2016 – Invited to give a talk on Saints Faustina, John Paul II and Margaret Mary Alacoque, an exorcist from San Pedro, Laguna, reminded the attendees of the Marian Encounter Seminar (MES) about God’s merciful patience.
“Don’t we realize how patient God is? Can’t we see that he has been waiting all this time [for us]?”, said Fr. Francis Tiquia. For Jesus has said, “Neither will I condemn thee. Go, and now sin no more” (John 8:11).
Expounding on St. John Paul II’s 1981 encyclical ‘Dives in Misericordia’ (Rich in Mercy), he reminded MES participants that mercy is not for the unrepentant sinner, and that God’s merciful patience is “not a weakness” but an opportunity for everyone to be saved.
“Mercy is God’s greatest attribute,” stressed the priest during the MES hosted by the Missionaries of Mary, a lay community.
‘Apostle of Mercy’
“God is always and everywhere and at all times merciful, from healing the sick, feeding thousands of people, teaching, exorcising, and even dying on the Cross as Victim of Love,” added Tiquia.
MES attendees were treated with Bible verses from both Old and New Testament that talked about God’s covenant with His people.
Quoting the prophet Isaiah, Tiquia said: “For the mountains may depart and the hills be removed, but the Lord’s steadfast love shall not depart, and His covenant of peace shall not be removed….”
St. Faustina Kowalska, also known as the “Apostle of the Divine Mercy”, was credited with formulating the relationship between love and mercy expressed when she said: “Love is the flower, mercy is the fruit” (Diary, 148).
The saint, who received extraordinary revelations from Jesus Himself, was born to a poor family that struggled during the World War I years and only had three years’ of formal schooling, so hers were the humblest tasks in the convent: either in the kitchen or in the garden.
The spiritual director of Mary Help of Christians and Alliance of Holy Family International (Philippines), introduced his talk with a good definition of mercy and how it is differentiated from “grace”.
According to the priest, the ancient Church Fathers say the Church herself was born “from the wounded side of Christ”, and Baptism and the Eucharist, the two chief Sacraments, “from His heart.”
In his three-hour talk, Tiquia also focused on the Eucharist and Jesus’ revelations and requests for more frequent Eucharistic visits to St, Margaret Mary Alacoque, the 17th Century Catholic nun, who would later on be called the “Apostle of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.”
Participants of the MES, which is held four times annually at the University of Santo Tomas, Manila, shared their insights after the talk with CBCPNews.
“Fr. Tiquia’s talk reminds me and other Catholics the attendees to build and establish a strong devotion to the Holy Mass and the Eucharist,” said Filipino fashion designer Yuri dela Luna.
Joji Gargantiel Carneo from the Most Holy Trinity Parish in Sampaloc, Manila said: “What struck me most is that the devotion to the Divine Mercy and Sacred Heart are same. It boils down to the love of Jesus!” (Carl Jamie Simple S. Bordeos / CBCP News)