Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus…
n 1673, a French Visitandine (Visitation) nun named Margaret Mary Alacoque had a private revelation of Jesus, in which he asked the Church to honour his Most Sacred Heart.
In particular, Jesus gave to St. Margaret Mary 12 specific promises made to all who venerated and promoted devotion to the Sacred Heart.
Jesus said to St. Margaret Mary, “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 … I promise you that My Heart shall expand Itself to shed in abundance the influence of Its Divine Love upon those who shall thus honour It, and cause It to be honoured.”
The entire purpose of this devotion is to draw a person closer to the heart of Christ. If a person spreads devotion to the Sacred Heart, it is natural for him or her to be closer to God. The moment that this devotion is observed in a superstitious manner, neglecting the need to live a virtuous life, all bets are off and Jesus’ promises are null and void.
Jesus wants us to rest on his heart, like St. John, and the Sacred Heart devotion is an opportunity for us to encounter him more than just on Sundays and to deepen our love of him.
The 12 Promises of the Sacred Heart Devotion
I will give them all the graces necessary in their state of life.
I will establish peace in their homes.
I will comfort them in all their afflictions.
I will be their secure refuge during life, and above all, in death.
I will bestow abundant blessings upon all their undertakings.
Sinners will find in my heart the source and infinite ocean of mercy.
Lukewarm souls shall become fervent.
Fervent souls shall quickly mount to high perfection.
I will bless every place in which an image of my heart is exposed and honoured.
I will give to priests the gift of touching the most hardened hearts.
Those who shall promote this devotion shall have their names written in my Heart.
I promise you in the excessive mercy of my Heart that my all-powerful love will grant to all those who receive Holy Communion on the First Fridays in nine consecutive months the grace of final perseverance; they shall not die in my disgrace, nor without receiving their sacraments. My divine heart shall be their safe refuge in this last moment. Source
In the past, we’ve discussed the 12 Promises of Our Lord to all who venerate and promote devotion to His Sacred Heart. We’ve compared “favourites”, so to speak. I’ve probably quoted a very close friend of mine who told me that it was only when she read the above promises and undertook to spread this devotion in her own home, and wherever possible outside, that she experienced a change in herself which she attributes to Christ’s promise that lukewarm souls shall become fervent. She certainly became fervent: she changed from being a lukewarm Sunday Catholic to being devoted to the Faith and fervent in many areas of Catholic life – not least in her active support for Catholic Truth.
So, share your thoughts about the 12 Promises, as well as posting your favourite prayers and hymns – all to honour the Sacred Heart of Jesus on this lovely Feast. A very happy Feast day to one and all !