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Catholic Dictionary




The love of God beyond what humankind deserves. In one sense, every manifestation of God's love is an expression of mercy, since, absolutely speaking, God is not obligated even to create. But more properly, mercy is the exercise of divine charity toward those who have sinned. Mercy, then, is God's continued love of humans although they have sinned, his forgiving love that invites them to be reconciled with the God against whom they have sinned, his condoning love that mitigates and is even willing to remove all the punishment due to sin, and his superabundant love that mysteriously blesses the repentant sinners beyond what they might have received from God had they not sinned.