A Chance
for Life


Reconciliation Beyond Church Community

Day 8: Sunday, week 2


Mandala Miserere Mei Domine – Lord, Have Mercy On Me

Looking closely at the word Mercy (chesed) in the original Semitic language, (misericordia in Latin and Italian), we discover that it describes God’s unconditional love for each one, which never fails and expects nothing in return. Thus, God’s mercy holds everything in existence and sustains the world in unbreakable love.

‘Misericordia’ combines two words ‘miseri,’ relating to those who are poor and ‘cordia,’ heart. Praying ‘God have mercy on me’ includes then a desire for empathy and compassion to feel the plight of many of our sisters and brothers near and far, including creation. (Walter Kasper, Mercy, p. 23) Mindful of our own faults and failings, our prayer expresses our desire that passion be unleashed in us to join with people of good will to find solutions to the injustices and inequalities in our world today. Forgiveness and reconciliation are its fuel. Mercy, then, is not about God’s ‘pity’.



  • How does an expanded understanding of God’s mercy influence how I will pray to God for mercy in the future?

“God’s mercy can make even the driest land become a garden, can restore life to dry bones (Cf. EZ 37:1-14). … Let us be renewed by God’s mercy, let us be loved by Jesus, let us enable the power of God’s love to transform our lives too; and let us become agents of this mercy, channels through which God can water the earth, protect all creation and make justice and peace flourish” (Ez 37:1-14). (Pope Francis, Urbi et Orbi, Easter, 2013)

Mandala created by Rachel

Take time to gaze at the mandala…

  • What connections do I see between the mandala and the words of Pope Francis above?

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