Skip to comments.Catholic Prayer and Devotion: June the Month of the Sacred Heart
Posted on 06/01/2006 8:27:34 PM PDT by Knitting A Conundrum
Catholic Devotional Ping!
June Devotion: The Sacred Heart
The devotion consists in the divine worship of the human heart of Christ, which is united to His divinity and which is a symbol of His love for us. The aim of the devotion is to make our Lord king over our hearts by prompting them to return love to Him (especially through an act of consecration by which we offer to the Heart of Jesus both ourselves and all that belongs to us) and to make reparation for our ingratitude to God.
O Heart of love, I put all my trust in Thee; for I fear all things from my own weakness, but I hope for all things from Thy goodness.
Saint Margaret Mary Alacoque
PRAYER TO THE SACRED HEART
Devotion to the Sacred Heart was the characteristic note of the piety of Saint Gertrude the Great (1256-1302), Benedictine nun and renowned mystic. She was, in fact, the first great exponent of devotion to the Sacred Heart. In our efforts to honor the Heart of Jesus we have this prayer as a model for our own:
Hail! O Sacred Heart of Jesus, living and quickening source of eternal life, infinite treasure of the Divinity, and burning furnace of divine love. Thou art my refuge and my sanctuary, 0 my amiable Savior. Consume my heart with that burning fire with which Thine is ever inflamed. Pour down on my soul those graces which flow from Thy love, and let my heart be so united with Thine, that our wills may be one, and mine in all things be conformed to Thine. May Thy divine will be equally the standard and rule of all my desires and of all my actions. Amen.
FOR THE CHURCH
O most holy Heart of Jesus, shower Thy blessings in abundant measure upon Thy holy Church, upon the Supreme Pontiff and upon all the clergy; to the just grant perseverance; convert sinners; enlighten unbelievers; bless our relations, friends and benefactors; assist the dying; deliver the holy souls in purgatory; and extend over all hearts the sweet empire of Thy love. Amen.
A PRAYER OF TRUST
O God, who didst in wondrous manner reveal to the virgin, Margaret Mary, the unsearchable riches of Thy Heart, grant that loving Thee, after her example, in all things and above all things, we may in Thy Heart find our abiding home.
ACT OF LOVE
Reveal Thy Sacred Heart to me, O Jesus, and show me Its attractions. Unite me to It for ever. Grant that all my aspirations and all the beats of my heart, which cease not even while I sleep, may be a testimonial to Thee of my love for Thee and may say to Thee: Yes, Lord, I am all Thine;
pledge of my allegiance to Thee rests ever in my heart will never cease to be there. Do Thou accept the slight amount of good that I do and be graciously pleased to repair all m] wrong-doing; so that I may be able to bless Thee in time and in eternity. Amen.
Cardinal Merry del Val
MEMORARE TO THE SACRED HEART
Remember, O most sweet Jesus, that no one who has had recourse to Thy Sacred Heart, implored its help, or sought it mercy was ever abandoned. Encouraged with confidence, O tenderest of hearts, we present ourselves before Thee, crushes beneath the weight of our sins. In our misery, O Sacred Hear. of Jesus, despise not our simple prayers, but mercifully grant our requests.
Prayer Source: Prayer Book, The by Reverend John P. O'Connell, M.A., S.T.D. and Jex Martin, M.A., The Catholic Press, Inc., Chicago, Illinois, 1954
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus,
overflowing with love for all people and so empty of the love due to Thee,
behold us prostrate before You, eager to repair the damage caused to Your Heart
by the hateful actions, neglect and indifference heaped upon Your Heart by the people you love so much.
We are mindful, Lord, that we ourselves have failed to give You the honor and love that You deserve,
and we pray that we will never allow ourselves to wander from the love of Your Most Sacred Heart again.
We grieve, O Lord, that people continue to turn away from You in spite of Your love of them
and pray that by our words and deeds we might bring as many of these to You as we are able.
In the meantime, Lord, please accept our offering of our small sacrifices as reparation for all of the offenses committed
against Your Most Sacred Heart. Count our sacrifices worthy although we know that there is no sacrifice we can make
that will ever compare to the sacrifices that You have made for us.
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us.
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, I love you.
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, I trust in you.
Prayer of Saint John Eudes
Oh, how good and delightful it is to dwell in the Heart of Jesus!
Thy Heart, O good Jesus, is a precious treasure, a precious pearl
which we have found by digging the field of Thy Body.
Who will cast aside this pearl? Nay, rather I will give all I have,
I will exchange all my thoughts and desires and purchase it.
I will cast all my care on the Heart of the Lord Jesus and He will
provide for me without fail. I will adore in this temple,
this Holy of Holies, this Ark of the Testament, and I will praise the name
of the Lord, saying with David, "I have found my heart that I may pray
to my God. And I have found the heart of my King, my Brother, my Friend,
the benign Jesus, and why shall I not adore?" Assuredly I shall pray.
For His Heart is mine. I will say it boldly, for Christ is my Head,
is not what belongs to my Head mine? Therefore as the eyes of my corporal
head are truly my eyes, so is my spiritual heart my heart.
Therefore, it is well with me: truly I have but one Heart with Jesus
and what wonder that there should be but one heart with the multitude of believers.
O most holy Heart of Jesus, fountain of every blessing, I adore You, I loved You, and with a lively sorrow for sins, I offer You this poor heart of mine. Make the humble, patient, Pure and wholly obedient to Your will. Grant, good Jesus, that I may live in You and for You. Protect me in the midst of danger; comfort me in my afflictions; give me health of body, assistance in my temporal needs, Your blessing on all that I do, and the grace of a holy death.
Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus
by Fr.. William G. Most
1. Devotion to the Sacred Heart is part of the mainline of our faith: The reason is that it is basically honor paid to the love of God as seen in and symbolized in the Heart of Jesus. Without that Divine Love we would not exist at all, nor would we have been redeemed. For to love is to will good to another for the other's sake.It is because (1) He willed us the good of existence that we exist at all and continue to exist; (2) Our existence would be miserable without the redemption, which was needed not just for original sin--which if one had nothing else would not result in eternal punishment--but also and principally for the reparation of our personal sins, without which most persons would be eternally doomed.
So Pius XI, in his Encyclical, Miserentissimus Redemptor, wrote (as cited by Pius XII, in Haurietis aquas): "Does not this one devotion contain a summary of all our religion, and a guide to a more perfect life? Indeed, it more easily leads our minds to know Christ the Lord intimately, and it more effectively turns our hearts to love Him more ardently and to imitate Him more perfectly."
So it is not a peripheral devotion, like that to St. Anthony, for example, or to other Saints. To honor the love of God is the very heart of our faith.
2. Hypostatic union: The term means union of two natures in one Person, the divine Person. It is because of this that we can direct our devotion immediately to the physical Heart of the Redeemer. Pius XII wrote ("Haurietis aquas" par. 21): "We recognize that His Heart, the noblest part of human nature, is hypostatically united to the Person of the divine Word. Consequently, there must be paid to it that worship of adoration with which the Church honors the Person of the Incarnate Son of God Himself."
3. Triple Love: Haurietis aquas pars. 55-57: "It is a symbol of that divine love which He shares with the Father and the Holy Spirit, but which He, the Word made flesh, alone manifests through a weak and perishable body, since 'in Him dwells the fullness of the divinity in a bodily way' [Col 2:9]. It is, besides, the symbol of that burning love which, infused into His soul, enriches the human will of Christ and enlightens and governs its acts by the most perfect knowledge derived both from the beatific vision and that which is directly infused. And finally--and this in a more natural and direct way--it is the symbol also of sensible love, since the body of Jesus Christ, formed by the Holy Spirit in the womb of the Virgin Mary, possesses full powers of feelings and perception, in fact, more so than another other human body."
To fill in on the triple love:
1) 1 John 4:8 says "God is love." In speaking of humans, we can see that he or she has love. But that is a duality. The perfectly undivided character of God means we must not say He has love,but that He is love. He is love within Himself since--in view of the fact that to love is to will good to another for the other's sake - the Father eternally wills the Supreme Good of the Divine Nature to the Son. That will is effective, and thereby the Son is begotten from the Father. Father and Son together will that same Supreme Good to the Holy Spirit: thus the Holy Spirit originates, is effected from and by both.--In His divinity He, the Divine Second Person of the Holy Trinity loves us, that is He wills to us the divine good of a share in the Divine Nature (cf. 2 Pet 2:4) making possible the superhuman happiness of the Beatific Vision in eternity.
2) The human will of Jesus, the Incarnate God, also wills us that same eternal happiness. We can as it were get a measure on this love. For if to love is to will good to another for the other's sake, then, if someone sets out to bring good to the other, but is stopped by a small obstacle, then that is a small love. If it takes a great obstacle to stop it, it is a great love. But if even an immense obstacle does not stop it - that love is immense, beyond measure.
So St.Paul says in Romans 5:8: that God "proved His love for us, since at the right time, Christ died for us." And what a death! Hideously painful. And He knew from the first instant of His conception what it was, for, as we shall explain later, His human soul from the first instant saw the vision of God, in which all knowledge is available. He let us as it were look inside Himself twice. In Luke 12:50: "I have a baptism to be baptized with, and how am I straitened until it be accomplished." That is: I know what dreadful suffering awaits me. I am in a tight spot, cannot be comfortable until I get it over with. About a week before His death, He was speaking to a crowd in Jerusalem. He decided again to let us see within Him - for surely He could have held back the anguished cry (John 12:27): "Now my heart is troubled! What shall I say? Father, save me from this hour." If we have a long running pain or stress, it wears the skin thin, as it were, and it becomes all the more unbearable. We, however, can take comfort in the thought: May be it won't come--maybe it won't be so bad. But the vision of God was merciless; it showed Him infallibly everything to the last horrid detail. Since as Pius XII told us, He had the most perfect of all human bodies, being formed by the Holy Spirit in the womb of the Immaculate Virgin, it would feel pain more than others. The vision showed Him too the coldness and ingratitude of so many who rejected Him. So He is said to have told St.Margaret Mary that that pain of rejection was worse than the physical suffering.
We can get a gauge on the severity of rejection too. The pain is in proportion to the form the rejection takes, and the love the rejected one has for the one who is rejecting. The form it took on Him? - the worst possible death. As to His love, it was shown by what lengths He would go to to bring us eternal happiness - so that love was beyond measure. So the pain of rejection was similarly beyond measure.
3) The third kind of love is a love of feeling. In human affairs, love itself is in the spiritual will; but normally along with that goes a parallel on the bodily side, which psychologists call somatic resonance. That is a love of feeling. Since, recalling again what Pius XII told us, that His human body was most perfect, it would be most perfectly resonant to the love in His spiritual will. Centuries before, God had told the people through Isaiah (55:9): "As high as the heavens are above the earth, so high are my ways above your ways." On hearing this one might say in dismay: How can we hope to please Him? But now we know in Christ He has a human heart, with human feelings, that responds as our hearts do, minus our imperfections.
4. Covenant and love: We saw one measure of His love, the obstacles it could overcome. There is another way to gauge its force: the new covenant.
A covenant is a sort of contract. In Ex. 19:5 God said to the people through Moses: "If you really hearken to my voice and keep my covenant, you will be my special people." That means: "If you do this, I will do that." Now in a contractual type of arrangement, each party gives the other something of at least closely equivalent value. What was that which Christ gave to the Father? His own obedience unto death. How much was that worth? Of course, it was infinite. Therefore, what the Father pledged to give in turn would be similarly infinite. In other words, He bound Himself to make available, on behalf of our race as a whole, an infinite, inexhaustible measure of forgiveness and grace.
We said He did this for our race as a whole. That is true, but there is more: In Gal 2:20, St.Paul tells us that "He loved me, and gave Himself for me." Was that true only for St.Paul, a most special person? Not at all. Vatican II, in Gaudium et spes par. 22 taught: "Each one of us can say with the Apostle: The Son of God loved me, and gave Himself for me." To translate that into contractual language: Our Redeemer generated an infinite objective title to forgiveness and grace not just for our race as a whole, but He created an infinite title in favor of each one of us individually.
In passing: How can anyone be lost with an infinite title to forgiveness and grace? Could he not go on sinning greatly for years,and then pull up short just before the end? We reply: God would not be unwilling to grant grace even to such a one, if he would really repent But there are two problems: First, if someone planned in advance to sin a long time and then quit in time--would there be really a change of heart? Hardly; it was all preplanned. Secondly, it is one thing for Him to give, another for us to take in what He gives. By sinning long and gravely a person makes Himself incapable of receiving. Much sin over time will result in hardness or blindness. So God might give, but the sinner could not see at all what God was trying to tell him. For the first thing an actual grace needs to do is to give the person the good thought of what God wants him to do. But the pull of habit coming from many sins can cancel out, overwhelm the pull of grace, which is gentle, in that it respects our freedom; while the pulls of creatures, if one lets himself be deeply enmeshed, do not respect his freedom: they take it away.
5. His knowledge and love: Pius XII, in his Encyclical on the Mystical Body, wrote: "The most loving knowledge of this kind, with which the divine Redeemer pursued us from the first moment of the Incarnation, surpasses the diligent grasp of any human mind; for by that blessed vision which He enjoyed when just received in the womb of the Mother of God, He has all the members of the Mystical Body continuously and perpetually present to Himself, and embraces them with saving love.... In the manger, on the Cross, in the eternal glory of the Father, Christ has all the members of the Church before Him and joined to Him far more clearly and far more lovingly than a mother has a son on her lap, or than each one knows and loves himself."
6. Consecration and reparation: The essential devotion does not consist in singing hymns or lighting vigil lights, though these are good. Nor is it identified with the Nine First Fridays, though the Church highly favors these. Rather, Pius XII, in Miserentissimus Redemptor, explained: "Certainly, among the other things which properly belong to the worship of the Sacred Heart, that consecration stands out and is notable, by which we, recognizing that we have received all that we are and have from the eternal love of God, dedicate ourselves and all that we have to the Divine Heart of Jesus." But Pius XI added: "...if the first and chief thing in consecration is the repayment of the love of the creature to the love of the Creator, the second thing at once follows from it, that, if that Uncreated Love has been neglected by forgetfulness or violated by offenses, compensation should be made in some way for the injustice that has been inflicted: in common language we call this debt one of reparation...."
There are, then, two essentials: consecration and reparation.
When Pope Leo XIII consecrated the world to the Sacred Heart in 1899, he explained it this way: "For we, in dedicating ourselves, not only recognize and accept His rule explicitly and freely, but we actually testify that if that which we give were ours, we would most willingly give it, and we ask Him to graciously accept from us that very thing, even though it is already His."
In other words, in consecration we as it were say that we acknowledge He already has most full rights over us, as Creator and Redeemer, and we owe Him everything, and He would not need to repay us at all. But we say that we beg Him to kindly accept the very same service on a title of love, and propose to serve Him better.
As to reparation: All sin is a debt. The Holiness of God wants it paid. A rabbi, Simeon ben Eleazar (Tosefta, Kiddushin 1.14) wrote: "He [anyone] has committed a transgression. Woe to him. He has tipped the scale to the side of debt for himself and for the world." The sinner takes from one pan what he has no right to have. The scale is out of balance. He could begin to rebalance in case of theft, by giving the property back; in case of a stolen pleasure, he begins to rebalance by giving up some other pleasure he could have had. But this only begins: for even one mortal sin has an infinity: Infinite Person offended. Therefore if the Father willed full rebalance - did not have to, but did will it - the only way was to send a Divine Person to become Man. He could generate an infinite value to fully rebalance. This does not mean we can do nothing. St.Paul makes clear that we are saved and made holy if and to the extent that we are members of Christ, and like Him - so we must be like Him in this work of reparation: rebalance is a most essential part. Pius XII, in Miserentissimus Redemptor: "If the soul of Christ was made sorrowful even to death on account of our sins, which were yet to come, but were foreseen, there is no doubt He received some consolation from our reparation, likewise foreseen."
Text of the file "Devotion to the Sacred Heart" by Rev. William G. Most.
Monks of Adoration have a history of the Sacred Heart too. I'll find the link again tomorrow. Thank you for the wonderful thread.
Sacred Heart of Jesus,
Thank you for all the pain
you have suffered for love of us,
unworthy as we are to listen to your soft voice.
Sacred Heart of Jesus,
Thank you for being willing to come to us,
day by day,
in the mystery of the mass
waiting for us to love you in return.
Sacred Heart of Jesus,
wounded by the indifference and scorn and ingratitude
of the world you poured your heart's blood for,
forgive me for all those times
I forgot the true giver,
I looked with unseeing eyes,
I turned a deaf ear,
I chose not to love.
Sacred Heart of Jesus,
You who are worthy of all my love
I give you my heart,
no matter the cost.
Jesus, gentle and humble of heart,
make my heart like yours.
You gave me a dream one day, O Lord,
of midnight on a storming sea,
Hurricane winds blowing free,
washing up on an unprepared shore.
I watched as the waters swirled and rose,
huge swells washing all away
there in the darkness far from day,
The works of hands shattered in the water flows.
I watched how puny are the works we prize
The works of hands and sweat and dreams
Falling there beneath the streams
Nothing of man stopped the water's rise.
And yet, there on the water's face
Bobbing lightly as the waves moved on,
Survivors surfacing towards the dawn
Rafts and boats and planks and boards in place.
Even though wind tossed, and frightened there
even though battered in the night
they escaped into the light,
By the hand of loving care.
"My mercy," said the Lord to me
"I gave them refuge in my heart,
As the darkness took their world apart
Because they put their trust in me.
"Take care to understand and know
When darkness seems too dark to see
That I will hold you close to me
In darkest night, when storm winds blow
"If you will give your heart to me
To keep within my heart of love
You will always float above
The darkness of that midnight sea.
"Cling to my mercy now, this day,
The storm clouds gather, the darkness grows,
The seas are rising, the dark wind blows,
Come into my heart or wash away."
The Revelation of the Sacred Heart of Jesus Paral-le-Monial, France
It was to St. Margaret Mary Alacoque, a humble nun of the Order of the Visitation of Our Lady that Our Lord chose to reveal to the world His Sacred Heart, thus opening a New Era of Grace and Mercy in the history of the Church and the world. These private revelations took place during the years 1673-1675, and are drawn from the diary of St. Margaret Mary Alacoque, the witness of her fellow sisters, and that of her spiritual director, St. Claude de La Colombiere.
The First Apparition: December 27, 1673
On the Feast of St. John the Evangelist Our Lord came to St. Margaret Mary, while she was in prayer before the Blessed Sacrament, and granted her the same privilege as He had done to St. Gertrude. This is how St. Margaret Mary describes the event in her autobiography:
"One day, having a little more leisure-for occupations confided to me left me scarcely any-I was praying before the Blessed Sacrament, when I felt myself wholly penetrated with that Divine Presence, but to such a degree that I lost all thought of myself and of the place where I was, and abandoned myself to this Divine Spirit, yielding up my heart to the power of His Love. He made me repose for a long time upon His Sacred Breast, where He disclosed to me the marvels of His Love and the inexplicable secrets of His Sacred Heart, which so far He had concealed from me. Then it was that, for the first time, He opened to me His Divine Heart in a manner so real and sensible as to be beyond all doubt, by reason of the effects which this favor produced in me, fearful, as I always am, of deceiving myself in anything that I say of what passes in time. It seems to me that this is what took place:"
"My Divine Heart is so inflamed with love for men, and for you in particular that, being unable any longer to contain within Itself the flames of Its burning Charity, It must needs spread them abroad by your means, and manifest Itself to them (mankind) in order to enrich them with the precious graces of sanctification and salvation necessary to withdraw them from the abyss of perdition. I have chosen you as an abyss of unworthiness and ignorance for the accomplishment of this great design, in order that everything may be done by Me."
"After this He asked me for my heart, which I begged Him to take. He did so and placed it in His own Adorable Heart where He showed it to me as a little atom which was being consumed in this great furnace, and withdrawing it thence as a burning flame in the form of a heart, He restored it to the place whence He had taken it saying to me:"
My well-beloved, I give you a precious token of My love, having enclosed within your side a little spark of its glowing flames, that is may serve you for a heart and consume you to the last moment of your life; its ardor will never be exhausted, and you will be able to find some slight relief only by bleeding. Even this remedy I shall so mark with My Cross, that it will bring you more humiliation and suffering than alleviation. Therefore, I will that you ask for it with simplicity, both that you may practice what is ordered you and also to give you the consolation of shedding your blood on the cross of humiliations. As a proof that the great favor I have done to you is not imagination, and that it is the foundation of all those which I intend further to confer upon you, although I have closed the wound in your side, the pain will always remain. If before, you have taken only the name of My slave, I now give you that of the beloved disciple of My Sacred Heart."
"After such a signal favor which lasted for a long time, during which I knew not whether I was in heaven or on earth, I remained for several days, as it were, on fire and inebriated (with divine love) and so completely out of myself, that I had to do myself violence in order to utter a single word. The effort I had to make in order to join in recreation or to take food was so great that it was all I could do to overcome myself, which was a cause of considerable humiliation to me. I was not able to sleep, because of the pain of the wound, which is so precious to me; it produces such heat within me that it burns and consumes me alive. I also felt such a plentitude of God, that I could not explain myself to my Superioress, as I should have wished, regardless of any suffering and confusion which the recital of these favors might cause me. I would rather have accused myself of my sins before the whole world than speak of these graces on account of my extreme unworthiness. It would have been a great consolation to me had I been permitted to read aloud my general confession in the refectory, in order thereby to make known the depth of corruption which is in me, so that none of the favors I received might be attributed to me."
Our Lord makes known the Devotion of the First Fridays: June 1674
"On the First Friday of each month, the above-mentioned grace connected with the pain in my side was renewed in the following manner: the Sacred Heart was represented to me as a resplendent sun, the burning rays of which fell vertically upon my heart, which was inflamed with a fire so fervid that it seemed as if it would reduce me to ashes. It was at these times especially that my Divine Master taught me what He required of me and disclosed to me the secrets of His loving Heart. On one occasion, while the Blessed Sacrament was exposed, feeling wholly withdrawn within myself by an extraordinary recollection of all my senses and powers, Jesus Christ, my sweet Master, presented Himself to me, all resplendent with glory, His Five Wounds shining like so many suns. Flames issued from every part of His Sacred Humanity, especially from His Adorable Breast, which resembled an open furnace and disclosed to me His most loving and most amiable Heart, which was the living source of these flames. It was then that He made known to me the ineffable marvels of His pure love and showed me to what an excess He had loved men, from whom He received only ingratitude and contempt.
"I feel this more than all that I suffered during My Passion. If only they would make Me some return for My Love, I should think but little of all I have done for them and would wish, were it possible, to suffer still more. But the sole return they make for all My eagerness to do them good is to reject Me and treat Me with coldness. Do you at least console Me by supplying for their ingratitude, as far as you are able."
"On representing to Him my inability, He replied:"
"Behold, this will supply for all that is wanting to you."
"And at the same time His Divine Heart being opened, there issued from It a flame so ardent that I thought I should be consumed, for I was wholly penetrated with it, and being no longer able to bear it, I besought Him to have pity on my weakness."
"I will be your strength. Fear nothing, but be attentive to My voice and to what I shall require of you that you may be in the requisite disposition for the accomplishment of My designs. In the first place you shall receive Me in Holy Communion as often as obedience (to your confessor and superiors) will permit you, despite the mortification and humiliation it may cause you, which you must receive as pledges of My Love. You shalt, moreover, communicate on the First Friday of each month. Every night between the Thursday and the (first) Friday I will make you share in My mortal sadness which I was pleased to feel in the Garden of Olives, and this sadness, without you being able to understand it, shall reduce you to a kind of agony harder to endure than death itself. And in order to bear Me company in the humble prayer that I then offered to My Father, in the midst of My anguish, you shall rise between 11 P.M. and midnight, and remain prostrate with Me for an hour, not only to appease the divine anger by begging mercy for sinners, but also to mitigate in some way the bitterness which I felt at that time on finding Myself abandoned by My Apostles, which obliged Me to reproach them for not being able to watch one hour with Me. During that hour you shall do what I shall teach you. But listen, My daughter, believe not lightly and trust not every spirit, for Satan is enraged and will seek to deceive you. Therefore, do nothing without the approval of those who guide you; being thus under the authority of obedience, his efforts against you will be in vain, for he has no power over the obedient."
Our Lord Purifies His Servant
After this apparition St. Margaret began to suffer from a mystical fever. The Most Holy Trinity appeared to her on another occasion. At the request of her religious superiors, she was asked to pray for a cure to her strange sickness. In response the Blessed Virgin Mary came to her and granted her request. The next year (1675) Our Lord came and asked her for a bitter sacrifice to appease His justice which was aroused by the sins of a single house of religious. She accepted to make this sacrifice. And so, on the vigil of the Presentation (February 2), for the length of one long night she suffered mystically the indescribable tortures of hell and volunteered herself for an extraordinary public penance, which in her humility she does not describe for us. The next morning, at Mass, Our Lord spoke to her:
"At last peace is restored, and My Sanctity of justice is satisfied by the sacrifice you have made in honor of that which I made at the moment of My Incarnation in the womb of My Mother. I wished to renew and unite the merit thereof with this act of yours in order to apply it in favor of charity, as I have shown you. Hence it is that you must no longer lay any claim to whatever you may do or suffer, either to increase your merits or to make satisfaction by penance or otherwise, since everything is sacrificed in favor of charity. Therefore, in imitation of Me you must act and suffer in silence without any other interest than the glory of God, in the establishment of the Reign of My Sacred Heart in the hearts of men, to whom I wish to manifest It by your means."
Thus Our Lord spoke to her, after she received Him in Holy Communion.
Our Lord Requests the Devotion of First Fridays be practiced: June 16, 1675
During the octave in preparation for the Solemnity of Corpus Christi, while St. Margaret was close to the choir grate, Our Lord appeared to her upon the Altar.
"Behold the Heart which has so loved men that it has spared nothing, even to exhausting and consuming Itself, in order to testify Its love; and in return, I receive from the greater part only ingratitude, by their irreverence and sacrilege, and by the coldness and contempt they have for Me in this Sacrament of Love. But what I feel most keenly is that it is hearts which are consecrated to Me, that treat Me thus. Therefore, I ask of you that the Friday after the Octave of Corpus Christi be set apart for a special Feast to honor My Heart, by communicating on that day, and making reparation to It by a solemn act, in order to make amends for the indignities which It has received during the time It has been exposed on the altars. I promise you that My Heart shall expand Itself to shed in abundance the influence of Its Divine Love upon those who shall thus honor It, and cause It to be honored."
The Devotion is Made Known to the World
Our Lord had St. Margaret ask that a Feast in honor of His Heart be offered Him by the Church on the Friday after the Solemnity of His Body and Blood (Corpus Christi), that such homage be paid to Himself by the King of France, and that the mission of propagating this devotion was to be entrusted to the Order of the Visitation Sisters and to the priests of the Society of Jesus.
After St. Margaret made this known to her spiritual director, the future St. Claude de la Colombiere. He consecrated himself to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and began to spread the devotion. From Paray-le-Monial, her convent, this devotion spread rapidly, under the care of the Jesuits, to the entire Church. Today, just out side of Paris, France, you can visit the Basilica built as a Act of National Reparation to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, which commemorates the Apparitions of the Sacred Heart to St. Margaret Mary Alacoque. She is buried at Paray-le-Monial, which is between Lyons and Paris. Her feast day is October 16. --George Pollard
Source: Catholic Culture
Morning Prayer to the Sacred Heart
This day, O Lord,
may all my works, words and thoughts
be permeated by the sweet love you have given me,
and give willingly to all who will accept it.
Use my imperfect hands to pass on the wonder of your touch,
Use my mouth, too often guilty of words of harm, to pass on words of your blessing,
Use my imperfect mind to realize your presence even in the most unseemly person,
and thus kindle in me
and those I come in contact with
the fire of your love.
O Sacred Heart of Jesus,
gentle and humble,
loving beyond comprehension,
make my heart like yours.
Short Litany of Aspirations
May I prove to You my love, O heart of Jesus, by a spirit of self-sacrifice for your interests.
May I cheerfully make every sacrifice You demand of me, 0 heart of my Jesus.
May the sacrifices You ask of me glorify You, *
May each sacrifice made forYour love draw me nearer to You,
By increasing in the spirit of self-sacrifice, may I become more like You.
May the sacrifices I make be agreeable to You,
May each sacrifice win one soul to You,
May each sacrifice prevent one mortal sin,
May each sacrifice earn a special grace for some soul,
May each sacrifice merit a holy death for some soul,
May each sacrifice relieve a soul in purgatory,
May each sacrifice ascend as a prayer to You,
May each sacrifice be as a hymn of praise to You,
May Your Holy Spirit instruct me more and more in the spirit of self-sacrifice,
May the spirit of self-sacrifice increase in our family,
May the same spirit be propagated throughout the whole Church, 0 Heart of my Jesus,
And may it hasten the Church's triumph.
O Lanb of God, sacrificed for us, give us a spirit of self-sacrifice.
O Lamb of God, daily immolating Yourself upon the altar for us, give us grace to immolate our wills for Your sake.
O Lamb of God, dying for us, give us grace to die to all that wounds your Sacred Heart.
* O Heart of My Jesus
O Lord Jesus Christ, whose whole life was one continual sacrifice for the glory of Your Father and the salvation of our souls, grant us the grace to find our joy in making sacrifices for You and for the interests of Your Sacred Heart. Amen.
Prayer to the Wounded Heart of Jesus
O my Most Loving and Gentle Jesus, I desire with all
the affections of my heart, that all beings created and
uncreated, should praise Thee, honor Thee and glorify
Thee eternally for that Sacred Wound wherewith Thy
Divine side was rent. I deposit, enclose, conceal in that
wound and in that opening in Thy Heart, my heart and
all my feelings, thoughts, desires, intentions
and all the faculties of my soul.
I entreat Thee, by the Precious Blood and Water that flowed
from Thy Most Loving Heart, to take entire possession of me,
that Thou may guide me in all things.
Consume me in the burning fire of Thy Holy Love,
so that I may be so absorbed and transformed
into Thee that I may no longer be but one
with Thee. Amen.
Act of Contrition to the Sacred Heart
MOST Sacred and Adorable Heart of Jesus!
humbly and with contrite heart I prostrate myself before Thee,
bitterly bewailing that I was remiss
in Thy love and have offended Thee
by my ingratitude and unfaithfulness,
thereby becoming unworthy of the manifestations of Thy love. Filled with confusion and fear,
I can but say,
"I have sinned against Thee, I have sinned!"
Most Amiable and Divine Heart,
have mercy on me,
though I do not deserve mercy.
Reject me not, but reveal, rather,
I beseech Thee, the excess of Thy mercy by granting me,
a poor sinner,
who appears before Thee
in the abyss of his nothingness and misery,
pardon for my sins.
O Christ Jesus, I acknowledge Thee as King of the world.
All that exists has been created for Thee. Exercise Thy rights upon me.
I renew my baptismal vows and renounce Satan with all his works and pomps, and I promise to lead a good Christian life. I particularly promise to do all in my power for the triumph of God and His Church.
O divine heart of Jesus, I offer Thee all my actions in order that all mankind may acknowledge Thee as their King and that Thy divine peace may reign throughout the whole world. Amen.
I forgot I had a graphic and needed to add html to my last post:
Here it is, reparagraphed:
This is my favorite Sacred Heart image I have seen. Jesus wears the crown of thorns, the crown the world gave him in mockery of his kingship, sign of how the world rejected him, yet also the most recognizable badge of his suffering.
There are tears on his cheeks, aching grief not for his pain, but a lover's tears because he is rejected by those he gave so much for, who he loves so deeply, who he wants to bring joy and life to, but who spurn him. His heart burns with that light which is the life of man, glowing with that light which is there to drive out all the darkness that hurts us, kills us. It is a wounded heart, cut once by the lance, but continually cut by man's rejection.
This is similar to pictures of Jesus as the Bridegroom in eastern tradition...mocked, scourged and crowned, this is the festal dress our Lord wore, dressed in his wounds and his blood and the mocking garments of those who would make him seem small and insignificant, instead of the silks and gold that he deserved to wear, because these wounds were of infinite more worth than any fabric of man's making, because they were the price he was willing to bear to purchase his bride the Church. By his blood and his death, the blood of God, he who was there at the creation, come down to earth to fetch her, he obtained the dazzling white array to dress his bride in, but this rarest of gifts is so often spurned.
The inscription reads, Sic Deus Dilexit Mundum, For God So Loved the World. O look upon him you have pierced, this loving heart, this burning light who would heal you, purify you, make you into something you never knew you could be, keep you safe forever in his heart.
Weep for the griefs and tears you have caused him, and know this: if you were the only sinner in the world, he would still have done this all for you, to save you.
O my Jesus,
I contemplate your poor battered face this evening,
Your hair sticky and wet from the blood beneath your crown,
your cheeks bruised and bloodstreaked,
your nose swollen.
I behold the King on his way to his betrothal,
in just those garments that show
the depth of your love,
how far you are willing to go
in pursuit of you bride,
what a bride price you are willing to pay
to dress her in the dazzling white you promised.
Let me contemplate this gift,
and not forget the pain throbbing through your body
because of me, and all like me,
brother and sister in our lack of holiness,
pain you bear willingly,
pain rooted in our lack of perfection,
and our turning away from your light,
pain rooted in our hunger for good twisted into things we should not want,
all braided together like the thorns you wear around your head.
How heavy this burden you carry
on that abused but precious head, O Lord,
and I, with all of mankind, heaped that burden on you,
hammered the thorns into your flesh,
mocked you for who you are,
King and Bridegroom for an unfaithful world.
What reparations could I make
that would make this reality go away?
But, pricked to the heart,
I offer you my tears,
and grief at the necessity,
and bowing before you,
offer you the little love I have,
my abject sorrow,
and eternal gratefulness at your willingness to love.
(now it's easier to read!)
Prayer for Pardon and Grace
O DIVINE REDEEMER!
humbly prostrate at the foot of Thy Cross,
I call upon Thee to incline Thy Sacred Heart to pardon me.
Jesus, misjudged and despised-----have mercy on me!
Jesus, calumniated and persecuted-----have mercy on me!
Jesus, abandoned by men and tempted in the desert-----have mercy on me!
Jesus, betrayed and sold-----have mercy on me!
Jesus, insulted, accused, and unjustly condemned-----have mercy on me!
Jesus, clothed in a robe of ignominy and contempt-----have mercy on me!
Jesus, mocked and scoffed at-----have mercy on me!
Jesus, bound with cords and led through the streets-----have mercy on me!
Jesus, treated as a fool and classed with malefactors-----have mercy on me!
Jesus, cruelly scourged-----have mercy on me!
Jesus, held inferior to Barabbas-----have mercy on me!
Jesus, despoiled of Thy garments-----have mercy on me!
Jesus, crowned with thorns and reviled-----have mercy on me!
Jesus, bearing the Cross amid the maledictions of the people-----have mercy on me!
Jesus, bowed down by ignominies, pain, and humiliations-----have mercy on me!
Jesus, crucified between thieves-----have mercy on me!
Jesus, dying for my sins amid all kinds of suffering-----have mercy on me!
LET US PRAY
SACRED HEART of Jesus, my Redeemer! Exercise, I beseech Thee, Thy office of mediator with me, and permit not that Thy sufferings and cruel death be in vain for my salvation, but let them bring forth, for Thy glory, fruits of salvation in me, that my heart may love, praise, and glorify Thee for ever and ever. Amen.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.