How Divine Mercy saved a Satanist
Tess Poling, membership director of the Divine Mercy Support Network of the Diocese of Sacramento in California (Photo: Nirva Delacruz)
MANILA– How does it feel to have a miracle happen right in front of your eyes? A Divine Mercy devotee based in the U.S. recounted on Jan. 17 what she calls a “Divine Mercy miracle” story at the sidelines of day 2 of the 4th World Apostolic Congress on Mercy (WACOM) about a young American inmate who claimed he came from a line of Satan-worshipers but who would later on have a stunning conversion.
“He tells me his grandpa, dad, and himself were all Lucifer-worshipers, and he cuts himself and drips blood on people he prays over because he said Satan has given me a gift of healing,” said Tess Poling, membership director of the Divine Mercy Support Network of the Diocese of Sacramento in California.
According to her, she met the 24-year old high security inmate during one of her visits to the Folsom State Prison as a chaplain volunteer in the 1990s.
During their first conversation, “Michael” revealed he loved the Psalms and got to read them when someone gave him a Bible when he was incarcerated in the county jail but was unwilling to give up his Satanic “gift of healing”.
“’Whatever I’m going to say will be coming from Jesus because He’s standing right here in front of you…because He’s reaching out to you. He loves you and He cares for you.’ That’s how we started our conversation,” said Poling, who first helped organize the Divine Mercy devotees in her parish St. John the Baptist in Folsom, Sacramento.
The encounter ended with Poling praying aloud and “Michael” chanting.
Needless to say, she was resolved to pray for the young man’s conversion.
“What I did for him..I did the Stations of the Cross keneling down..And I told Satan, ‘You distract me. Each time I get distracted I will repeat the Stations of the Cross from station 1. The more you distract me, the more prayers go up to heaven,” she said during an interview with CBCPNews at the UST Quadricentennial Pavilion.
The following Saturday Poling visited the prison, Michael exhibited such a glowing physical change that would soon prove to be spiritual as well.
“And wow… When we went back this inmate came in and his cheeks were rosy, his eyes were like [a] baby’s eyes, and I don’t know what shampoo he used but he was so beautiful.”
“And he was so happy to come back … The inmates, the volunteers all saw the transformation,” shared Poling.
Young man’s conversion
That day, for the first time, Michael was allowed to assist at Mass, reading the Psalms.
“And from then on, he started praying, started looking [at how to] pray the rosary,” she said.
After some time, Poling found out Michael had requested a priest to hear his confession and would eventually convert to Catholicism.
“He became Catholic. He became very active [assisting the prison chaplain,] said Poling.
According to her, this happened around the time that the first Divine Mercy group was organized in the All Hallows’Parish in Sacramento.
Poling came with 9 other delegates from the Diocese of Sacramento in the U.S. to attend WACOM 4, which runs from Jan. 16 to 20. CBCPNews