How to Pray: Divine Mercy Chaplet

Illustration of Divine Mercy Chaplet

The Divine Mercy Chaplet, also known as the Chaplet of The Divine Mercy, is a powerful prayer in which we ask for God’s mercy to be on us and on all people throughout the world.

The Origin of the Chaplet 

In the 1930s, Jesus appeared to St. Faustina – a Polish nun – and revealed to her the depths of His mercy. He inspired her to pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet and to share it with others, and she wrote down much of what He told her: 

Encourage souls to say the Chaplet which I have given you. Whoever will recite it will receive great mercy at the hour of death. When they say this Chaplet in the presence of the dying, I will stand between My Father and the dying person, not as the just Judge but as the Merciful Savior. Priests will recommend it to sinners as their last hope of salvation. Even if there were a sinner most hardened, if he were to recite this Chaplet only once, he would receive grace from My infinite mercy. I desire to grant unimaginable graces to those souls who trust in My mercy. Through the Chaplet you will obtain everything, if what you ask for is compatible with My will. 

St. Faustina’s Diary

When to pray:

You can pray the Chaplet at any time, but here are a few times that are especially impactful:

  • After Mass: The Divine Mercy is an intercessory prayer that extends the offering of the Eucharist, so it is especially appropriate to use it after having received Holy Communion at Mass.
  • As a Novena: It may be said at any time, but our Lord specifically told St. Faustina to recite it during the nine days before the Feast of Mercy (the first Sunday after Easter). He then added: “By this Novena, [of Chaplets] I will grant every possible grace to souls.” (796)
  • At 3:00 PM: known as the “hour of great mercy” in remembrance of Christ’s death on the cross. 

How to pray:

Using regular Rosary beads (or your ten fingers!), follow this structure:

Begin with the Sign of the Cross and this prayer:

You expired, Jesus, but the source of life gushed forth for souls, and the ocean of mercy opened up for the whole world. O Fount of Life, unfathomable Divine Mercy, envelop the whole world and empty Yourself out upon us. 

On each of the three small beads, pray: 

O Blood and Water, which gushed forth from the Heart of Jesus as a fount of mercy for us, I trust in You! (x3)

Then, an Our Father:

Our Father, Who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name; Thy kingdom come; Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil, Amen.

A Hail Mary:

Hail Mary, full of grace. The Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou amongst women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death, Amen.

And the Apostle’s Creed:

I believe in God, the Father almighty, Creator of heaven and earth, and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died and was buried; He descended into hell; on the third day He rose again from the dead; He ascended into heaven, and is seated at the right hand of God the Father almighty; from there He will come to judge the living and the dead. I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and life everlasting. Amen.

First Decade:

  • On each of the large beads (the Our Father beads during a Rosary) pray:
    • Eternal Father, I offer you the Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity of Your Dearly Beloved Son, Our Lord, Jesus Christ, in atonement for our sins and those of the whole world.
  • On each of the ten small beads, pray:
    • For the sake of His sorrowful Passion, have mercy on us and on the whole world. (x10)

Repeat this pattern for the next four decades:

Eternal Father -> For the sake of His sorrowful Passion (x10)

After all five decades, pray this three times:

Holy God, Holy Mighty One, Holy Immortal One, have mercy on us and on the whole world. (x3)

Close with:

Let us pray: Eternal God, in whom mercy is endless and the treasury of compassion — inexhaustible, look kindly upon us and increase Your mercy in us, that in difficult moments we might not despair nor become despondent, but with great confidence submit ourselves to Your holy will, which is Love and Mercy itself.

In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, Amen.

We look forward to praying the Divine Mercy Chaplet with you on Hallow. May God’s mercy be with you.