March 13, 2000
volume 11, no. 51
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Will Be Canonized by John Paul II on April 30

    VATICAN CITY, MAR 10 ( Among the saints to be canonized during this Jubilee one of the best known is Faustina Kowalska.

    Elena, as she was baptized, was born in 1905 in the Polish town of Glogowiec. From a very young age, she felt called to the religious life, but her parents would not allow her to enter a convent. Because of this, she herself tried to suppress her calling. However, visions of the sufferings of Christ radically changed her life. As a result, she left for Warsaw on August 1, 1925, to enter the Congregation of the Virgin Mary of Mercy. She took the name Sister Mary Faustina, and spent 13 years in several houses of the Congregation, in particular in Krakow, Vilnius and Plock, where she worked as cook, gardener and porter.

    On the outside, no one could have suspected the extraordinary mystical life Sister Faustina experienced. She did her chores with enthusiasm, was careful in observing all the religious rules and silence, but at the same time she expressed an overwhelming, selfless love. In an apparently ordinary, monotonous and gray life, she concealed extraordinary union with God. She received exceptional graces: revelations, visions, hidden stigmata, the gift of ubiquity, the ability to read people's souls, and the gift of prophecy.

    Mysteriously, this simple woman became the apostle of God's Divine Mercy for the 20th century, to proclaim this great truth to the world, which gives man freedom and life. Her mission rested on her veneration of the image of the merciful Jesus, who touches his Sacred Heart from which spring beams of white and red light. The movement she was inspired to begin has gathered thousands of supporters throughout the world, especially in Poland and the United States, inspired by the motto, "Jesus, I trust in you."

    Faustina Kowalska died in Krakow from sickness and suffering at 33, leaving an impressive mystical legacy. She will be canonized by John Paul II on April 30. ZE00031010


March 13, 2000
volume 11, no. 51

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