The Divine Mercy Chaplet
Through Saint Faustina, Jesus also revealed special ways to live out the response to His mercy-one of which is the Chaplet of Divine Mercy, as both a novena and a prayer for the three o’clock hour-the hour of His death. The Chaplet of Mercy is recited using ordinary rosary beads of five decades. At the National Shrine of Divine Mercy in Stockbridge, Massachusetts the Chaplet is preceded by two opening prayers from the Diary of Saint Faustina and followed by a closing prayer. 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. Our Lord said to Saint Faustina: 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. We, too, can make a novena of prayer for these intentions and others, especially by praying the Chaplet of The Divine Mercy.
Second DayToday bring to Me THE SOULS OF PRIESTS AND RELIGIOUS. Most Merciful Jesus, from whom comes all that is good, increase Your grace in men and women consecrated to Your service, that they may perform worthy works of mercy; and that all who see them may glorify the Father of Mercy who is in heaven. Father of mercy and of all goodness, I beg You by the love You bear these souls and by the delight You take in them: Bless the whole world, that all souls together may sing out the praises of Your mercy for endless ages. Seventh DayToday bring to Me THE SOULS WHO ESPECIALLY VENERATE AND GLORIFY MY MERCY. Most Merciful Jesus, whose Heart is Love Itself, receive into the abode of Your Most Compassionate Heart the souls of those who particularly extol and venerate the greatness of Your mercy.
These souls are a living Gospel; their hands are full of deeds of mercy, and their hearts, overflowing with joy, sing a canticle of mercy to You, O Most High! I beg You O God: Show them Your mercy according to the hope and trust they have placed in You. Father of Mercy, I beg You by the bitter Passion of Your Son and by His three-hour agony on the Cross: Let them, too, glorify the abyss of Your mercy.
Disabled people and the inclusive society: or the times they really are changing
The United Nations itself estimates that the above quote applies to some 500 million disabled people across the World and given that the UN Declaration has been in existence for 50 years, it is clear that large numbers of disabled people have suffered human rights abuses for a long time. To return to the theme of the exclusion of disabled people rather than our creation, while a comprehensive history and anthropology of disability has yet to be written, it is clear from what evidence we do have that disabled people are not excluded from all societies. In our own society disabled people have and continue to face all these forms of exclusion. Society had to do something about disabled people and it did; not being shy about using all the forms of exclusion mentioned above. A noble aim which has been somewhat tarnished in its implementation: while the Government intends to lop £750 millions off benefits for disabled people immediately, so far only 50 disabled people have found jobs under the new deal.
The problem is that the Government’s plans to get disabled people into work are focused around 2 initiatives: a small number of special schemes and job coaches for individual disabled people. At a conservative estimate, there are a least one million disabled people of working age who are employable and such trifles are unlikely to have any significant impact on the unemployment rate amongst disabled people. Disabled people in Britain will recognise an earlier version of this policy when in the late 1960s and early 1970s the Disablement Income Group and the Disability Alliance proposed a national disability income available as of right to all disabled people. This proposal was not simply attacked on the grounds of cost but disabled people themselves argued that such a proposal would serve as a basis for the further exclusion of disabled people from other parts of society; if disabled people didn’t need jobs, why bother to educate them or given them the means to travel – so the argument went. Many disabled people fear that our disappearance from the future will not be a matter of progress but one of bitter regret, for society as well as for ourselves.
We can be confident about this because disability studies, in Britain at least, is developing as a genuine partnership between disabled people and the academy and as a consequence of this, the voice of disabled people will be heard far louder than it otherwise might. If nothing else it will allow the voice of disabled people to be heard in fora where otherwise it would not and I am confident that the Strathclyde Centre for Disability Research will play a role in giving the disabled people of Strathclyde a voice.