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.
What is the Divine Mercy Chaplet?
The Origin of the Chaplet
In the 1930s, Jesus appeared to St. Faustina Kowalska, a humble and kind Polish nun, and revealed to her the depths of His mercy. St. Faustina entered the Congregation of the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy in 1925, but she passed away just thirteen years later from tuberculosis in 1938. Throughout her life of holiness, she continually received revelations from Jesus and diligently wrote down what He told her in her diary. St. Faustina was canonized by St. (Pope) John Paul II on April 30, 2000.
In 1935, an angel appeared to St. Faustina, and she heard the call to pray for mercy. The next day, Christ appeared and urged her to pray the Chaplet herself and with others at the hour of death. She wrote down this revelation in her diary:
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
Praying the Divine Mercy Chaplet
The Divine Mercy Chaplet can be prayed with traditional Rosary beads, though to do so isn’t necessary. The Chaplet only takes a few minutes, and thousands of Catholics around the world pray it every day to ask for God’s mercy.
Why do we pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet?
We pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet for mercy — in our own lives and in our neighbors, too. And we also pray to remind ourselves that we must rely on God; we must recognize our weakness and replace our anxieties and worries with abounding trust in God. We pray so that we might honestly live out the words “Jesus, I trust in You.”
Those who sincerely say ‘Jesus, I trust in You’ will find comfort in all their anxieties and fears … There is nothing more man needs than Divine Mercy – that love which is benevolent, which is compassionate, which raises man above his weakness to the infinite heights to the holiness of God.Saint (Pope) John Paul II (Krakow, Poland – June 7, 1997)
When do we pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet?
You can pray the Chaplet at any time, but here are three times that are especially impactful when praying for God’s mercy:
The Divine Mercy is an intercessory prayer that extends the offering of the Eucharist, so it is especially appropriate to use it after receiving Holy Communion at Mass.
Before the Feast of Mercy
The Chaplet may be prayed at any time, but our Lord specifically told St. Faustina to recite it as a novena 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.” (St. Faustina’s Diary, 796)
At 3:00 p.m.
3:00 p.m. is known as the “hour of great mercy” in remembrance of Christ’s death on the cross at 3:00 p.m. on Good Friday. Similarly, people often pray the Stations of the Cross at this time.
How to pray: Divine Mercy Chaplet
Using regular Rosary beads (or your ten fingers), follow this structure:
Prepare your heart and mind
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.
Prayer of Saint Faustina
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)
Pray 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.
Pray 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.
Pray 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.
On the first large bead
In the traditional Rosary prayer, we say the Our Father for each of the large beads. In the Divine Mercy Chaplet, we pray the following:
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 the ten small beads
In a traditional Rosary prayer, we pray the Hail Mary on each small bead. In the Divine Mercy Chaplet, we pray the following:
For the sake of His sorrowful Passion, have mercy on us and on the whole world. (x10)
Repeat this pattern 4x
For each decade: begin with the “Eternal Father” prayer, and then praying “For the sake” ten times.
After five decades, pray for mercy
Repeat the following prayer three times:
Holy God, Holy Mighty One, Holy Immortal One, have mercy on us and on the whole world. (x3)
Close your time in prayer
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.
On Hallow, you can pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet (10, 12, and 14 minute options) or the Divine Mercy Novena led by Jonathan Roumie, the actor who plays Jesus in The Chosen.
We look forward to praying with you.
May God’s mercy be with you.