October 5 is a feast day in the Catholic Church honoring Saint Faustina Kowalska. She was an early 20th century nun and mystic who is said to have experienced a number of apparitions of Jesus Christ. Throughout her life, she reported on these visions and conversations in her diaries.
At Wednesday's Mass for the St. Joseph School student body, Father Tony Robbins wore colorful vestments depicting one of Saint Faustina's apparitions. In 1931, after partially recovering from tuberculosis, she said Jesus appeared to her wearing a white garment with two large rays, one red and the other pale, emanating from His heart. They denoted blood and water. "These two rays issued forth from the very depths of my tender mercy when my agonized heart was opened by a lance on the cross," Jesus said. "You are my secretary of mercy, Sister Faustina. I have chosen you for that office in this life and the next life." He also asked her to paint a special image that would reflect His mercy and help spread the message of His great love. He wanted the world to know of His mercy through that image. Sister Faustina couldn't paint, but in 1933 she worked with a Polish artist named Eugeniusz Kazimirowksi and did her best to describe her vision.
Sister Faustina's visions lead to the creation of the Feast of Divine Mercy which Catholics around the world celebrate the Second Sunday of Easter. She'd gone from being an obscure nun with little education to achieving sainthood more than 60 years after her death. In 1997, Pope John Paul II made a pilgrimage to Sister Faustina's tomb in Poland calling her "the great apostle of Divine Mercy of our day." She was canonized a saint on Divine Mercy Sunday in 2000 in a ceremony conducted by the Pope himself. She became the first saint of this millennium.
The children pictured with Father Tony are elementary school students Charlotte Meeks, Lucas Negrete and Ryder Palmer.