Wednesday, June 1, 2011

June is the month of the Sacred Heart

Devotion to the love of God has always been present in the Church, but a specific devotion to this love under the figure of the wounded Heart of Jesus did not take definite form until the eleventh century AD.  This devotion appears to have arisen in monasteries, and was then adopted widely throughout the Church.  However, it remained an individual and private devotion until the 17th century, when St. John Eudes added a public character to Sacred Heart devotion by providing it with an Office, and by helping to establish a Feast of the Sacred Heart.  Also in the 17th century, St. Margaret Mary Alacoque, a Visitation nun, was granted a series of visions in which Jesus revealed to her His desire that the wonders of His great love be made known to all mankind, that He wished to be honored under the figure of the Sacred Heart, and that He wished certain devotions to be adopted by the Faithful, promising numerous benefits to those who practiced these devotions.  Accounts of St. Margaret Mary's visions and descriptions of the devotions requested by Jesus were spread widely by means of books written by St. Margaret Mary's confessor and others close to her.  Many Popes have promoted these devotions.  For example, Pope Pius IX extended the Feast of the Sacred Heart to the entire church, and Pope Leo XIII consecrated the entire world to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. 

Here are the 12 promises Our Lord made to St. Margaret Mary for those that are devoted to His Sacred Heart.

1.I will give them all the graces necessary for their state in life.
2.I will give peace in their families.
3.I will console them in all their troubles.
4.They shall find in My Heart an assured refuge during life and especially at the hour of death.
5.I will pour abundant blessings on all their undertakings.
6.Sinners shall find in My Heart the source and infinite ocean of mercy.
7.Tepid souls shall become fervent.
8.Fervent souls shall speedily rise to great perfection.
9.I will bless the homes in which the image of My Sacred Heart shall be exposed and honoured.
10.I will give to priests the power to touch the most hardened hearts.
11.Those who propagate this devotion shall have their name written in My Heart, and it shall never be effaced.
12.The all-powerful love of My Heart will grant to all those who shall receive Communion on the First Friday of nine consecutive months the grace of final repentance; they shall not die under My displeasure, nor without receiving their Sacraments; My Heart shall be their assured refuge at the last hour

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