Here is a simple story, familiar to many of us…
A young man displayed his heart, one day.
It was a sight to behold – without a single flaw.
>> “The most beautiful heart in town” he proclaimed and attracted the crowds to admire it.
Then an aged man joined the big crowd.
“Why, my heart is beautiful too”, he said quietly.
All eyes turned to see his heart…
It was beating strongly, but had a number of scars, patches, deep gouges and several jagged edges.
The people stared at that heart!
>> How could he claim to have a “beautiful” heart, they wondered!
The young man remarked, “You must be joking. My heart is perfect, whereas yours is a mess of scars and patches!”
“Well”, said the old man, “The heart’s worth is measured by love!”
>> “In giving love, you tear out a piece of your heart – that leaves a gouge – which is patched when you receive love.
If you give more than you receive, then the gouges remain.
>> They can be painful – but that is the risk you take…”
The young man realized the worth of love.
Inspired by the true symbol of the heart, the young man, ripped of a piece of his heart, and offered it, with trembling hands to the old wise man.
>> Then he patched the gauged with the large piece that the old man gave him!
As the crowd watched in amazement, the two embraced each other!
Love, by its nature, gives away…
>> The heart, which is deep-rooted in love, thus bears wounds and patches.
Today on this Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, we contemplate in adoration and meditation on the Heart of our Blessed Lord – pierced and broken and shared – in love for each one of us.
In the year 1673, Our Blessed Lord appeared to St. Margaret Mary and made her to rest her head upon His Heart; and during which He revealed to her the wonders of His love.
He revealed to her, His Sacred Heart…
… and requested her to establish the Feast of the Sacred Heart – the Friday after the Corpus Christi, the feast of the Body and Blood of Christ- in order to make reparation for sins which offend His Sacred Heart.
In her vision, she saw His wounded heart, on fire with love, saying, “Behold this Heart which has loved men so much and has received such little love in return.”
It was on June 11, 1899 Pope Leo XIII solemnly consecrated the whole humankind to the Sacred Heart of Jesus.
The Gospel of the day presents the account of how the Heart of our Blessed Lord was pierced with a lance, on Mount Calvary.
“But one soldier thrust his lance into His side, and immediately blood and water flowed out” (Jn 19: 34)
The Catholic tradition identifies the water as the symbol of Baptism and the Blood as the symbol of the Holy Eucharist.
· The Water symbolizes purification.
· The Blood symbolizes atonement.
The Sacred Heart of Jesus is today one of the most recognizable symbols of the Christian faith.
· The picture consists of the Heart, with the wound of the lance in its side, a crown of thorns about it, a cross above it and flames surrounding it.
This Sacred Heart of Jesus represents not simply His physical heart but His love for all humankind.
This Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of the Lord teaches us many things…
a. It teaches us the immense love that the Lord possesses for each one of us, personally.
Have I experienced the tremendous love that the Lord has for me?
>> I may feel myself low.
>> I may consider myself to be not very good.
>> I may think that my life is just not worth living.
>> I may deem that my past has ruined my life very badly.
>> I may judge that situations around me can never be changed.
Even with all these things, am I convinced that “Jesus loves me”, still… and that He will take me through, by the power of His love?
b. It teaches us the pain and the agony that the Lord still undergoes as a result of our sin and the sins of the world
Do I realize that a sinful life brings tears to the Lord and causes more wounds to the Precious Heart of the Lord?
>> There is nothing which pains the Lord more than sin.
>> It was for our salvation that He shed even the last drop of His blood.
>> He not just wants but insists and demands and commands us to live in holiness.
Do I give heed to this “passionate and sincere” call of the Lord to live our lives in sanctity and in accordance to God’s Will in my life?
c. It teaches us the need to be part of the process of redemption that Christ has won for us and to be shareholders in His mission of bringing God’s love to all
Do I become aware that Christ is calling me to be part of His redemptive work of salvation?
Christ still suffers and undergoes pains.
>> From the Cross, He cried, “I thirst” (Jn 19: 28)
He desires that people who have known and experienced His love become effective agents of bringing His love to others.
>> By a life of sacrifices (tiny or great…little or huge), by simple acts of love, compassion and mercy and by greater participation in the Sacramental Life of the Church, the love of the Sacred Heart can be brought to many more people.
Am I willing to take up this responsibility that the Lord is handing on to us?
The Heart of the Lord is pierced, broken and shared for each one of us.
In the Holy Eucharist, we have the privilege to receive this greatest treasure.
>> In turn, we are to break our hearts and share it with others, to bring the love and compassion of the Lord to the world.
May this Solemnity of the Precious Symbol of True Love stir the flames of God’s Love in our hearts and inspire us to set ablaze the world on fire, with His Love and Compassion!
Sacred Heart of Jesus, may we ever remain close to You!
Happy Feast of the Most Blessed Heart of the Lord!
God Bless! Live Jesus!
Quotable-quote-a-day-with-St Francis de Sales (SFS) – “May thy heart dwell always in our hearts!
>> May thy blood ever flow in the veins of our souls!
O sun of our hearts, thou givest life to all things by the rays of thy goodness!
I will not go until thy heart has strengthened me, O Lord Jesus!
May the heart of Jesus be the king of my heart!
Blessed be God. Amen.”