Grow in mercy this year with Our Sunday Visitor

Let’s face it: It’s not that easy to be merciful. In fact, it comes much more naturally to our fallen selves to lean the other way, into a spirit of disapproval or ill will; into a lack of compassion; into selfishness, cruelty or intolerance. And many times, we simply don’t know where to begin. Luckily, this is where Our Sunday Visitor excels. Here are some resources that can help you grow in mercy this year.

Brush up on your “Icons of Mercy.” On the first Sunday of every month during the entire jubilee year, beginning this week, OSV Newsweekly will feature a new series called “Icons of Mercy.”

Once a month for the next 12 months, we’ll feature men and women who lived and breathed mercy — both mercy they received humbly from God and mercy that they shared with others. This week, the icon is St. Padre Pio, a devout and humble man whose life was based on a foundation of mercy. The Newsweekly will have many other stories on the Year of Mercy in the paper throughout the next year, including several In Focuses and a special issue on mercy in April. 

Learn more about the Church’s relationship with mercy. Our Sunday Visitor is the exclusive publisher of a series of eight books promulgated specifically for the Year of Mercy by the Vatican’s Pontifical Council for the Promotion of the New Evangelization.

The eight-book series includes “Celebrating Mercy,” “The Psalms of Mercy,” “The Parables of Mercy,” “Mercy in the Fathers of the Church,” “The Saints in Mercy,” “Mercy in the Teaching of the Popes,” “The Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy,” and “Confession: The Sacrament of Mercy.” These short books are perfect for group or individual study, are easy to read and tie in the concept of mercy with a variety of elements in the Church. Available at

Reflect on mercy daily with OSV’s “365 Days to Mercy” app. For those of us who are attached to our smartphones, the “365 Days to Mercy” app is ideal for accompanying us in our spiritual journey during this Year of Mercy for three reasons: It contains original daily reflections on mercy that are thoughtful and pertinent; it has a ton of other content, including information on the holy year, prayers centering on mercy, and the latest Year of Mercy news; and finally, it’s free! Download it by searching for “365 Days to Mercy” in the App Store and Google Play store, or go here for a direct link to both:

Share mercy. Because mercy is for giving away as much as for receiving, a Year of Mercy pamphlet, both in Spanish and English, and a Year of Mercy prayer card are available at

The Year of Mercy begins on Dec. 8, the feast of the Immaculate Conception. Now is the perfect time to plan for how the jubilee year will shape your life for the next year. Wishing you a blessed jubilee year!

Thoughts? Email and follow on Twitter @GretchenOSV.