Friday, June 7, 2013

Feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus


Today is the first Friday of June, the Feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.  I had posted the devotion for the Sacred Heart here. If you would like a detailed description of the meaning and history of the Sacred Heart Devotion, you can go here to the New Advent website.  It holds a 1913 version of the Catholic Encyclopedia which is still beneficial for historical information, is in the public domain and accessible free online.

The devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus started about 1000 years ago.  It was associated with the piercing of Christ’s side on the cross, and the wounding of His heart was considered as representing God’s love.

Sagrado Corazón de Jesús I
by Rjcastillo
Then in the 1600’s, a nun named Margaret Mary Alacoque reported visions in which she saw and heard Jesus Christ. He talked of His love for mankind and encouraged the renewal of the devotion to His Sacred Heart. She took the request to the superior of a Jesuit house, Father de la Colombière.  Through his efforts the devotion grew in popularity and eventually popes got involved in approving and promoting it.

Margaret Mary was a Visitandine, from an order established by Saint Francis De Sales.  It was originally intended that the members of this order would visit the poor.  But due to local circumstances, they became an enclosed cloister.  Eventually, they moved in the direction of education and exist as such today. 

The founder, St. Francis, is a doctor of the church and considered the patron saint of writers.  I include this information because a prayer said along with the devotion supplicates for those who disdain the Christian faith, seeking that they may be converted to the Truth.  The New Evangelization depends greatly on education and communication as well as prayer.

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