Do you know the saint of Lithuania and why John Pope II proclaimed her to be blessed?
The story begins in a wooden one-storey house with a penthouse in 1908, where the monastery of the Congregation of the Sisters (Magdalene) of the Merciful Mother of God was established on a plot purchased by Duchess Radvilienė. The sisters took care of ex-prisoners, prostitutes and convicted minors.
St. Faustina (Helena Kowalska, 1905-1938) lived in the house in 1929 and from 1933 to 1936.
She was the daughter of ordinary gardeners and became a nun in 1925. St. Faustina experienced mystical visions: in 1931 in Plock, Jesus appeared to her twice, commanding her to paint his image. During 1933-1936, Faustina lived in Antakalnis Vilnius, at the home of the Magdalene Congregation and frequently visited St. Michael's Church.
In 1934, artist Eugenijus Kazimirowskis (1873-1939) painted the Divine Mercy according to her visions, and the painting now has a special sanctuary near the Dominican Church. St. Faustina saw the vision again in Vilnius. The nun talks about this in her diary, which was also published in Lithuanian in 2005. Pope John Paul II declared Faustina to be blessed (1993) and a saint (2000). She is the pioneer of the cult of Divine Mercy.
The wooden house where the mystic lived is included in the Register of Lithuanian Cultural Heritage Values. In 2005, the house was taken over by the Divine Mercy Foundation and housed the Memorial Centre for Pilgrims. In 2008, the house was renovated and both the authentic chapel and Faustina's room were restored.