Vatican City, Apr 16, 2023 / 08:00 am
A message by Pope John Paul II for Divine Mercy Sunday, written prior to his death, was read April 2, 2005 — the day of his death — at the end of the first funeral Mass celebrated for the pontiff.
Then-Archbishop Leonardo Sandri read the text before the recitation of the Regina Coeli, which during the Easter season replaces the Angelus.
The feast of divine mercy, celebrated on the first Sunday after Easter, was dear to the late pontiff, who instituted the feast day in 2000.
“To all of mankind, who so often seems lost and dominated by the power of evil, egoism, and fear, the risen Lord offers as a gift his love, which pardons, reconciles, and opens the soul again to hope,” the pope had written. “It is a love that converts hearts and gives peace. How the world needs to understand and welcome divine mercy!”