“I want this image, which you will paint with a brush, to be solemnly blessed on the first Sunday after Easter; that Sunday is to be the Feast of Mercy.”
(Words attributed to Jesus by Faustina in her diary, Diary, 47)
The Image of Merciful Jesus is a depiction of Jesus based on the devotion initiated by Saint Faustina Kowalska.
“Suddenly, I saw the Lord who said to me: Know, that if you neglect the matter of painting the image and the whole work of Divine Mercy, you will have to answer for a multitude of souls on the day of judgment.”
(Saint Faustina's Diary 154)
Faustina Kowalska was a Polish nun who joined the convent of Our Lady of Mercy in Warsaw 1925. In her diary, which was later published as the book Diary: Divine Mercy in My Soul, Faustina wrote about a number of visions of Jesus and conversations with him.
Faustina wrote that Jesus' right hand was raised in a sign of blessing and the left one was touching the garment near his breast, and that from beneath the garment slightly down, aside his breast, emanated two large rays, one red, the other white.
“The two rays denote Blood and Water. The pale ray stands for the Water which makes souls righteous. The red ray stands for the Blood which is the life of souls. These two rays issued forth from the depths of My tender mercy when My agonized Heart was opened by a lance on the Cross. Happy is the one who will dwell in their shelter, for the just hand of God shall not lay hold of him.”
(Saint Faustina's Diary 299)
The veneration of the Divine Mercy image also takes place in conjunction with the Divine Mercy Chaplet and Novena. The Vatican biography of Faustina states that the veneration of the Divine Mercy image is part of the second component of her message, namely "entreating God's mercy for the whole world". Praying before the Divine Mercy image (with the signature "Jesus I trust in you") is not only encouraged in Catholic devotions, but is mentioned as a partial condition for some of the indulgences associated with Divine Mercy Sunday.