The Sacred Heart is an invitation to ask ourselves, ‘How did Jesus love?’

Digital illustration by Ciaran Freeman

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This week we celebrate the Beautiful Solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus.  The main origins of the feast are with the visions received by St. Margaret Mary Alocoque, a 17th-century Visitation nun in a town called Paray-le-Monial, France.  Her visions of Jesus presenting himself with his heart, were initially disbelieved by her fellow sisters.  Then Jesus promised her in prayer that he would send her his “faithful servant and perfect friend.”  Shortly afterwards, a Jesuit named Claude la Colombiere showed up at the convent to serve as a spiritual director for the sisters.  He saw that Sister Margaret Mary’s visions were authentic, and devotion to the Sacred Heart spread from there.


Some people might be turned off by the devotion thanks to kitschy representations of Jesus pulling open his cloak and pointing to his Sacred Heart.  But if we set this devotion aside, we will miss out on a great opportunity to meditate on one of the most important aspects of Jesus’s life: the way that he loved.  The Sacred Heart is an invitation to ask ourselves, “How did Jesus love?” and “Whom did Jesus love?” For me the answers to those two questions are: abundantly, totally and completely; and everyone, especially those who were poor or marginalized.  But there are other questions that Solemnity of the Sacred Heart raises: “How do I love?” and “Whom do I love?”  And the most important question of all, “How can I love like Jesus?”  Maybe that’s a question you can ask yourself all week, as you encounter each person with the love of your own heart, which seeks to love as Jesus’s Sacred Heart did.

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Comments are automatically closed two weeks after an article's initial publication. See our comments policy for more.
William McCormick
2 months ago

The Sacred Heart of Jesus devotion is most precious. Indeed, I keep failing in my lifelong quest to receive Holy Communion on nine consecutive months. This devotion is opposed to homosexual acts.

Dale Athlon
1 month 3 weeks ago

To Catholics, June is not pervert LGBT sodomitic month, but devoted to the Sacred Heart of Jesus Christ for reparation for sin. Look it up. Don’t let Fr. Martin fool any of you. I am confirmation sponsor for 3 nephews and I work to keep their souls away from Fr. Martin.

Lisa M
1 month 3 weeks ago

Dale, what part of Catholicism teaches you so much hate towards those you do not share an understanding with? With all due respect, if you are the Catholic guide for your nephews, I truly hope they receive other examples. How on one breath you can speak of devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, and on another spew such contempt for your fellow man is truly astonishing, and that is coming from someone who parts ways with some of Fr. Martin's thinking. Sadly, it is once again another example of picking and choosing what you believe should be the focus of the faith, and ignoring all else, at the expense of completely missing Christ's message.

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