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BLESSED FRATHER MICHAEL SOPOCKO

"This is the visible help for you on earth.
He will help you to carry out My will on earth" (Diary, 53).

Divine Providence entrusted a very important role in St. Sister Faustina's mission to her confessor and spiritual director Fr. Michael Sopocko. During Sister Faustina's stay in Vilnius (Lithuania)
in the years 1933-1936, he was for her an irreplaceable help in discerning interior inspirations
and visions. Obedient to his orders, she wrote a DIARY, which is an now an extraordinarily valuable document of Catholic mysticism. In the DIARY one can also find evidence of Fr. Sopocko's extraordinary character and his work in fulfilling the desires of the Lord Jesus.

Blessed Fr. Michael Sopocko
(1888-1975)

"He is a priest after My own Heart
(...) Through him it pleases Me to proclaim
the worship of My mercy" (Diary, 1256).

"His thought is closely united with Mine, so be at peace about
what concerns My work. I will not let him make a mistake,
and you should do nothing without his permission" (Diary, 1408)

The painting of the Image of Merciful Jesus and the exposition of the Image for public honor, making the Chaplet to the Divine Mercy widely known, undertaking preliminary efforts to establish the Feast of the Divine Mercy and the founding of the new Congregation all took place in Vilnius thanks to Father Michael Sopocko. From that time the collaborative efforts, brought to fruition
at the cost of prayer and suffering, now radiate to embrace the whole world.

"Seeing Dr Fr. Sopocko’s great sacrifice and effort in his work, I admired his patience and humility. This all cost a great deal, not only in terms of toil and various troubles, but also financially, as Dr Fr. Sopocko was taking care of all the expenses. I can see that Divine Providence had prepared him to carry out this work of mercy before I had asked God for this. Oh, how mysterious are Your ways, O God! And how happy are the souls that follow the call of the Divine mercy!" (Diary, 422).

Frather Michael Sopocko was born in Nowosady, near Vilnius (Lithuania). He studied theology
at the University of Vilnius between the years of 1910 and 1914. He then went on to complete
at the Pedagogical Institute in Warsaw. After obtaining his doctorate in moral theology in 1926,
he became the Spiritual Director of the seminary in Vilnius. He was tenured in 1934. He worked
as lecturer of pastoral theology at the Theology Department of Stefan Batory University in Vilnius and at the Higher Theological Seminary in Bialystok (1928-1962). Between 1918 and 1932 he was
a chaplain in the Polish Army in Warsaw and in Vilnius.
In his published research works, Fr. Sopocko laid down a theological basis for the new forms
of devotion to the Divine Mercy, to which he was a dedicated apostle. He was deeply engaged
in social work. He was the confessor for religious and lay communities. In his letters to the newly formed congregation of the Divine Mercy, he helped to compose the constitution of the congregation according to the thinking and proposals of sister Faustina. He composed prayers
to the Divine Mercy based on her texts. He kept in contact with sister Faustina until the time
of her death, and afterwards took it upon himself to complete the tasks given to her in her apparitions. In the DIARY of Saint sister Faustina
there are testimonies bearing witness
to the beautiful personality and inner riches of this holy priest.

"O my Jesus, You see how very grateful I am to Father Sopocko, who has advanced Your work so much. That soul, so humble, has had to endure all the storms. He has not allowed himself to become discouraged by adversities, but has faithfully responded to the call of God" (Diary, 1586).

"I was talking with my spiritual director, I had an interior vision, of his soul in great suffering, in such agony that God touches very few souls with such fire. The suffering arises from this work. There will come a time when this work, which God is demanding so very much, will be as though utterly undone. And then God will act with great power, which will give evidence of its authenticity. It will be a new splendor for the Church, although it has been dormant in it from long ago.
That God is infinitely merciful, no one can deny. He desires everyone to know this before He comes again as Judge. He wants souls to come to know Him first as King of Mercy. When this triumph comes, we shall already have entered the new life in which there is no suffering. But before this, your soul (of the spiritual director) will be surfeited with bitterness at the sight of the destruction of your efforts. However, this will only appear to be so, because what God has once decided upon, He does not change. But although this destruction will be such only in outward appearance, the suffering will be real. When will this happen? I do not know. How long will it last? I do not know" (Diary, 378).

"Jesus, this is Your affair, so why are You acting this way toward him? It seems to me that You are making difficulties for him while at the same time ordering him to act.
Write that by day and by night My gaze is fixed upon him, and I permit these adversities in order to increase his merit. I do not reward for good results but for the patience and hardship undergone for My sake" (Diary, 86).

"There will be as many crowns to form his crown as there will be souls saved by this work" (Diary, 90).



"I received a letter from Father Sopocko. I learned that God’s work is progressing, however slowly.(...) I have come to learn that, for the present, so far as my participation in the work is concerned, the Lord is asking for prayer and sacrifice.(...) I have learned from this letter how great is the light which God grants to this priest. This confirms in me the conviction that God will carry out this work through him despite the mounting obstacles. I know well that the greater and the more beautiful the work is, the more terrible will be the storms that that rage against it" (Diary, 1401).

"God, in his unfathomable decrees, often allows it to be the case that those who have expended the most effort in accomplishing some work do not enjoy its fruits here on earth; God reserves all their joy for eternity. But for all that, God sometimes lets them know how much their effort please Him. And such moments strengthen them for further struggles and ordeals. These are the souls that bear closest resemblance to the Savior who, in the work which He founded here on earth, tasted nothing but bitterness"
(Diary, 1402).

"Jesus let me know how everything is dependent on His will, sa as to give me profound peace regarding the security of His work. Listen, My daughter, although all the works that come into being by My will are exposed to great sufferings, consider whether any of them has been subject to greater difficulties than that work which is directly Mine - the work of Redemption. You should not worry about adversities too much. The world is not as powerful as it seems to be; its strength is strictly limited" (Diary, 1643).




Frather Sopocko writes in his DIARY: "There are the truths which are known and often heard and spoken but not understandable. It was like that with me, concerning the truth of Divine Mercy. So many times I mentioned this truth in my sermons and thought about it during the retreats. I repeated it in church prayers - especially in Psalms - but I didn’t understand the meaning of this truth, and I didn’t get to the core of its essence,
that it is the highest attribute of God’s external activity. It was only this simple nun,
S. Faustina from the Congregation of the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy (Magdalens), who, by telling me this truth in simple terms and often repeating it, stimulated me to examine, study and think about this truth.
(...) in the beginning I didn’t know what the problem was; I listened, distrusted, thought, studied and sought advice from others - but only several years after did I understand the greatness and importance of this work. Only then was i convinced about the effectiveness of this old, but hugely neglected life-giving devotion, and the neccesity for its renewal in or times. (...) Trust in God’s Mercy, and the spreading of devotion to His mercy among others will be the general principle of the rest of my life. With the help of His immeasurable mercy I will devote of all thoughts, words and deeds to it, without a shadow of myself
".


"The message of the Gospel does not depend on proclaiming
that sinners should become good, but rather that God is good for sinners"
(Frather Michael Sopocko)


Frather Michael Sopocko died considered as a saint in Bialystok on the 15th of February 1975
(the feast day of St. Faustina).


REMEMBERANCE CHAMBER - The home where Fr. Michael Sopocko spent his last years and where
he died. Presently the HOUSE OF CONGREGATION OF THE SISTERS OF MERCIFUL JESUS.

Bialystok, 42 Poleska street.

SHRINE OF THE DIVINE MERCY - Resting place of the earthly remains of Fr. Michael Sopocko,
founder of the Congregation of Sisters of Mercifull Jesus. Bialystok, 1 Radzyminska street.

Frather Sopocko with the spiritual daughters.



"As a result of his efforts,
a new light will shine in the Church of God for the consolation of souls" (Diary, 1390).

"At the feet of Jesus I saw my confessor, and behind him a great number of the highest ranking ecclesiastics, clothed in vestments I had never seen before, except in this vision; and behind them, groups of religious from various orders; and further still I saw enormous crowds of people, which extended far beyond my vision. I saw two rays coming out from the Host, as in the image, closely united but not intermingled; they passed through the hands of my confessor, and then through the hands of the clergy and from their hands to the people, and then they returned to the Host..." (Diary, 344).


28 September 2008 in the Divine Mercy Church in Bialystok (Polonia) took place the beatification
of the Servant of God Fr. Michael Sopocko.

 

 

 

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