Here is an excerpt from an interesting article, A World Ablaze With Divine Mercy, Devotions Abound, Thanks Largely To The Laity, by JOSEPH PRONECHEN that appeared on April 15-21, 2007 isssue and was posted 4/10/2007 on the National Catholic Register website. You can read the whole article here.
In the Philippines, on Divine Mercy Sunday an average 100,000 people arrive at the National Shrine of the Divine Mercy in Marilao, an urban municipality in the province of Bulacan.
According to Francis Bourdon, executive director of the Association of Marian Helpers in Stockbridge, Mass., most walk because of the surrounding area’s great poverty.
Msgr. Josefino Ramirez, national spiritual director of the Divine Mercy Apostolate of the Philippines, reports that, in areas and parishes where the devotion is widespread, nearly the entire congregation attends. And, he says, the devotion continues beyond Mercy Sunday.
Msgr. Ramirez describes Filipinos’ reaction as “almost phenomenal. Everywhere is almost saturated with the Divine Mercy portrait and the chaplet or the 3 o’clock prayer is recited almost everywhere by religious groups and private individuals.”
He points out that radio stations and even a TV network have caught the fire. (Check out divinemercytvchannel.com.)
Scores of churches, chapels, private homes — and yes, government offices — have enthroned the Divine Mercy image. There are novenas expounding on mercy. And, through the apostolate, Msgr. Ramirez directs Mercy Centers helping the needy.
In short, it’s safe to say that the Philippines is being transformed into a veritable hot spot of Divine Mercy.