Mercy lies at the heart of the Christian faith. Catholics believe in a God of Mercy. He manifested His Mercy, first and foremost, in the Incarnation of His Word in the Person of Jesus Christ, who died on the cross for our sins. When He walked this earth, Jesus lived for others and greeted everyone He met with mercy and compassion. Mercy was the reason He entered this world. Mercy was why He forgave sins. Mercy was why He cured people of their physical ailments. Mercy was why He cast out demons. Mercy was why He suffered and died for us. Mercy for others was what He asked of his Father from the cross. Mercy was what flowed from His pierced side in the form of blood and water. Mercy was why He sent his Spirit to dwell in the hearts of the members of His body, the Church. Mercy was the reason for the sending of His Spirit at Pentecost.
The Holy Spirit is the Fountain of Mercy. He is the soul of the Church, the sacrament of Christ. He is invoked at the celebration of every sacrament. He is the source of Mercy, because He is the Bond of Love shared by the Father and the Son. From that Bond everything else flows: Baptism, Confirmation, Eucharist, Reconciliation, Orders, Matrimony, Anointing. These sacraments give honor and glory to the Father. They are actions of Christ. They are the works of the Spirit. Through them we receive His manifold gifts and fruits. Holy Spirit, Fountain of Mercy, pray for us.
-Rev. Dennis J. Billy, C.Ss.R., Krol Chair of Moral Theology, St. Charles Borromeo Seminary
How to Live It
During the Holy Year of Mercy, begin the practice of invoking the Holy Spirit as soon as you wake up in the morning. Use the Veni, Sancte Spiritus or similar prayer to the Holy Spirit. Take note of the special daily mercies that result from this simple act of dependence on the Third Person of the Trinity.
Quote from Catholic Tradition
“Come, Holy Spirit. Spirit of truth, you are the reward of the saints, the comforter of souls, light in the darkness, riches to the poor, treasure to lovers, food for the hungry, comfort to those who are wandering; to sum up, you are the one in whom all treasures are contained. Come! As you descended upon Mary that the Word might become flesh, work in us through grace as you worked in her through nature and grace. Come! Food of every chaste thought, fountain of all mercy, sum of all purity. Come! Consume in us whatever prevents us from being consumed in you.” ‐St. Mary Magdalene de Pazzi