When Val Conlon, arrived in Vilnius some years ago, very few people knew that this was the place where Saint Faustina had received the Chaplet of Divine Mercy. From her diary, Divine Mercy devotees knew that it happened in Vilnius but no one could tell where exactly the place was.
It took Val some time to discover the ruined convent which had only one surviving house, which through some extraordinary miracle happened to be the house where Saint Faustina lived, where she wrote the Diary and received the “Chaplet of Divine Mercy”. It was a revelation and an astonishing miracle at the same time, that this although a ruin should be the only convent house left out of five that made up the whole convent community in Faustina's time.
Amidst wars, destruction, Nazi and Communist occupations, this part of the convent survived.
Val felt God must have preserved this part of the convent for a holy purpose. It must be one of the most important places associated with the Divine Mercy revelations, the place where He gave her the prayer with such promise's attached to it, for those who recited it in certain circumstances, especially in preparation for the Feast of Mercy, to achieve complete cleansing of the soul.
And on the occasion of saying it at the bedside of a dying person, a promise to save that soul, regardless of the sins they had committed in life. This extraordinary prayer is so related to the mass, giving ordinary people an opportunity to offer up the sacrifice of Christ on the Cross to the eternal Father in atonement for our family’s sins and those of the whole world, especially now when in many parts of the world there is no priest to celebrate the mass.
Vilnius is now known as the “City of Divine Mercy”, a place that must have been highly favoured by Jesus. This is where His sacred image, the original “Image of Divine Mercy” was painted and exposed to the world for the first time, it is here that the “Chaplet of Divine Mercy” was given to the world; it is here that the “Feast of Mercy” was celebrated for the first time in 1934. It was here the Diary of St. Faustina was written, “Divine Mercy in My Soul”. It was here that the congregation of the “Sisters of Merciful Jesus” was founded as asked for by Jesus in the Diary of Faustina.
It is the City where Blessed Fr. Michael Sopocko proclaimed and made known to the world the revelations on Divine Mercy for the first time. No single place on this earth is more associated with Jesus and Divine Mercy than this city of Vilnius, in Lithuania, which of course was politically part of Poland in Faustina’s time, and that is why when Vilnius is mentioned in the Diary, it is in Poland because Lithuania was part of Poland at that time.