Divine Mercy Enthroned in Former Soviet Nation

Mission Director Says Devotion Proves Love Stronger Than Hate

By Nieves San Martín

DUSHANBE, Tajikistan, APRIL 8, 2008 (Zenit.org).- A former Soviet nation in Central Asia has a renewed opportunity to grow in devotion to God’s mercy after two images were enthroned in the “sui iuris” mission.

On the feast of Divine Mercy, two images of the devotion were enthroned in Tajikistan, a nation slightly smaller than Wisconsin, nestled between China and Afghanistan.

Incarnate Word Father Carlos Ávila, superior of the mission, affirmed that the devotion “is the most concrete preaching that love overcomes hate.”

“From now on,” he told ZENIT, “the small community of Catholic faithful in Tajikistan can approach the merciful Jesus with more trust and enthusiasm.”

“In effect,” Father Ávila added, “this devotion that Our Lord has brought to us through St. Faustina invites us to have full trust in the mercy of God, and to always be merciful with others in our words, actions and prayers, since, ‘faith without works, for as strong as it may be, is useless’ — an affirmation of Our Lord that is of utmost importance for the mission ‘ad gentes’ in these lands of Central Asia, where the roots of Christianity date back to the first centuries.”

The community of the nation prepared for the celebration by praying the chaplet of divine mercy and distributing educational materials about the devotion.

“It is an enormous grace for each one of us, above all to be able to participate in the propagation of the devotion to divine mercy among the men of the world today, where we can perceive not only the loss of the sense of sin, but also a great lack of faith and hope in the mercy of God for men, especially for the most sinful,” Father Ávila continued. “Devotion to divine mercy is the most concrete, real and effective preaching that grace is stronger than death, that love triumphs over hate.”

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