St. Faustina’s message comes to Denver

One-woman drama to depict saint’s life

Christ is waiting, ready to pour out his mercy to every sinner who turns to him.

Through her one-woman drama coming to Colorado this week, actress Maria Vargo is working to spread this message given to St. Faustina Kowalska in the 20th century.

“It doesn’t matter what we’ve done in our life,” Vargo said. “He wants more than anything for every soul to come to him.”

In the 90-minute performance “Faustina: Messenger of Divine Mercy,” the California-based actress portrays the life and faith of St. Faustina, known for being the start of the Divine Mercy devotion.

After entering the Sisters of Our Lady of Mercy convent, the young nun saw mystical visions in 1930 of Jesus, who appeared in white garments with red and white rays emanating from his heart.

She kept a record of her experiences in a dairy, which sparked a movement of devotion to the mercy of Christ. St. Faustina was canonized in 2000, making her the first declared saint of the third millennium. St. John Paul II called her “the great apostle of Divine Mercy in our time.” He declared the Sunday after Easter “Mercy Sunday.”

In preparing for her role, Vargo delved into the saint’s dairy and life. She visited the Our Lady of Mercy convent in Dorchester, Mass. She spent a week with the nuns to learn about their way of life.

“There was also a book there I read that had some key eyewitness accounts of (St. Faustina),” Vargo said. “She was a joyful person. She wasn’t afraid and didn’t shy away from correcting people if they were doing something wrong.”

She said she learned the nun was also very prayerful.

“The diary helped me prepare interiorly,” Vargo said about her role. “And to have an understanding of whom she was in her relationship with our Lord and those around her.”

Vargo said she tries to stay as true as possible to the spirit and essence of the saint in her performance.

“Every time, I do the performance with my heart and soul in it. I’m passionate about the show, and I want everyone seeing it to get the same experience and truly feel what’s happening,” she said.

In Denver, Vargo will give the last performances on Faustina until the fall. She will give her 75th performance of the play.

The drama is directed by Leonardo Defilippis, president of St. Luke Productions, a Washington-based drama, film TV, radio and web programming companying that depicts the lives of the saints and Scripture. The company produced the film “Thérèse” and performed “Maximilian: Saint of Auschwitz and Vianney” in Denver last year. The productions use actors, theatrical lighting, video imagery and original film scores to produce its dramas.

The performances of “Faustina are a freewill offering and suitable for ages 13 and up.

Vargo hopes that faithful will see the play to hear Christ’s message.

“We need to know that we, too, can be like Faustina and we can pray for the conversion of this world,” she said. “We all need mercy every day because we’re sinners.”

‘Faustina: Messenger of Divine Mercy’ Drama Schedule
8 p.m. May 31: Our Lady Mother of the Church, 6690 E. 72nd Ave., Commerce City. Call 303-289-6489
7 p.m. June 2: St. Peter Church, 55 N. Jefferson St., Monument. Call 719-866-6492 or email editor@coloradocatholicherald.com.
7:30 p.m. June 4: St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Church, 5450 S. Lemay Ave., Fort Collins. Call 970-226-1303 or email vtarasi@seas-parish.org.
7 p.m. June 5: St. Francis of Assisi Church, 2746 E. Fifth St., Castle Rock. Call 303-688-3025 or email mmccann@stfranciscr.org.

The dramas are suitable for ages 13 and up. Admission is a freewill offering. See www.stlukeproductions.com for information about the production company.

 

COMING UP: Colorado bishops issue letter on the Hyde Amendment and other pro-life Congressional policies

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We, the Catholic bishops of Colorado, urge Congressional Representatives to support the Hyde Amendment and the Walden Amendment. We also ask the Faithful to sign The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) petition to lawmakers encouraging them to preserve the Hyde Amendment, which can be accessed at: NoTaxpayerAbortion.com, and to contact their Congressmen and women to support the Hyde and Walden amendments.

The House Appropriations Labor and Health and Human Services subcommittee recently passed a spending bill that strips protections for pre-born children, healthcare providers,and American taxpayers by excluding pro-life provisions, including the Hyde and Weldon amendments.

The Hyde Amendment, which prohibits taxpayer dollars from being used to fund abortion in most cases, except for rape and incest, has received bipartisan support since its inception in 1976 – including by pro-abortion administrations. Hyde is critical in saving lives. The Charlotte Lozier Institute estimates that approximately 60,000 pre-born babies are saved every year because of the Hyde Amendment.[1] This is the first time in 40 years that the Hyde Amendment was not included in the annual appropriations bill[2] and failure to include pro-life amendments will only further increase divisions in our country.

The Weldon Amendment prevents any federal programs, agencies, and state and local governments from discriminating against health care practitioners and institutions that do not provide abortion services. It ensures that pro-life individuals and organizations can enter the health care profession without fearing that the government will force them to perform a procedure that violates their well-founded convictions. It has also received bipartisan support and was added to the appropriations bill every year since it was first enacted in 2005. [3]

Congress’ recent actions endanger the lives of pre-born children and infringe on the rights of millions of Americans who do not wish to participate in the moral evil of abortion. A recent Knights of Columbus/Marist poll found that 58 percent of Americans oppose taxpayer funding of abortions[4] and a 2019 Gallup poll shows that 60 percent of Americans think abortion should either be illegal or only legal in a few circumstances.[5]

The government should neither use taxpayer funds for the killing of pre-born children nor compel medical practitioners and institutions to violate their well-founded convictions. Congress must uphold these long-standing, common-sense bipartisan policies that promote a culture of life in our nation.

Human reason and science affirm that human life begins at conception. The Church objects to abortion on the moral principle that each and every human life has inherent dignity, and thus must be treated with respect due to every human person. There has never been and never will be a legitimate need to abort a baby in the womb.

It is critical that Congress continue its long-history of supporting policies such as the Hyde and Walden amendments, and that all Colorado Catholics and people of good will make their voice heard in supporting these life-affirming policies.

Sign the petition to Congress here: www.NoTaxpayerAbortion.com

Contact your Congressional Representatives here: https://cocatholicconference.org/news/

Sincerely yours in Christ,

Most Reverend Samuel J. Aquila
Archbishop of Denver

Most Reverend Stephen J. Berg
Bishop of Pueblo

Most Reverend James R. Golka
Bishop of Colorado Springs

Most Reverend Jorge Rodriguez
Auxiliary Bishop of Denver