||Grace Mazza Urbanski, director of children’s ministry for the Apostleship of Prayer, teaches students at St. Peter School in Ashton about mercy before leading them in the Divine Mercy Chaplet. (Catholic Herald photo/Kevin Wondrash)
ASHTON -- "I want to talk to you today about something very special that we can pray about," said Grace Mazza Urbanski, director of children's ministry for the Apostleship of Prayer, to students at St. Peter School in Ashton.
That "very special thing" was mercy.
"We're going to pretend we are mercy walking through the world," Urbanski said.
The Apostleship of Prayer, based in Milwaukee, encourages Christians to make a daily offering of themselves to the Lord for the coming of God's Kingdom and for the Holy Father's monthly intentions.
Urbanski spoke recently to both the students at St. Peter and the students in the parish's religious education programs on the importance of prayer and mercy in the Year of Mercy.
The power of mercy
When explaining to the students how to live a life of mercy, she said, "We have power and we use it to help people not to hurt people."
She compared it to being like a superhero.
"Your power can either make people feel better or your power can make people feel worse, and mercy is using your power to make people feel better," Urbanski said.
She stressed the importance of getting the strength to be a "mercifier" from Jesus, emphasizing the "best source of power" is in receiving Communion and the Sacrament of Reconciliation.
Closer to Jesus through prayer
Urbanski helped the students grow closer to Jesus by leading them in an exercise of "imagination prayer."
She said it's one way to pray, looking into the face of Jesus, the "face of the father's Mercy."
She showed them an image of Jesus from a Last Supper painting where St. John has his head resting on Jesus.
She encouraged the students to close their eyes and imagine they are also a "disciple Jesus loved," resting their heads on Jesus.
"Think about what it feels like to be up against Jesus's chest," Urbanski told the students to reflect on as they were praying.
She then told them to pretend they were looking up at the face of Jesus knowing "he loves you so much."
She encouraged them then to "think of something important in your heart that you want to tell Jesus," even though "Jesus already knew what you were going to say, but he loves hearing you say it in your own words."
Following Urbanski's presentation on mercy, the students and teachers prayed the Divine Mercy Chaplet during the 3 o'clock hour -- the hour of mercy.
For more on the Apostleship of Prayer, visit its website at apostleshipofprayer.org