Sacred Heart of Jesus

Part of our task as faithful Christians and citizens of the world is to engage the deep and probing questions that the great thinkers, wisdom figures, and commentators raise. Perhaps no question is more penetrating, more challenging, and more important than that offered by the amateur philosopher, Tina Turner: “What’s love got to do, got to do with it? What’s love but a second-hand emotion?” It is the question for the ages.

It is the question for today as we celebrated the Solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus – a feast that offers up in high relief the love of God that has been poured into the world – and continues to the source, the fountain of love that ever pours into the world. (You can read more about the Sacred Heart here.) Today is a feast we celebrate the Love of God. Continue reading

Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus

This week, we celebrate The Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, our church’s namesake.  The Sacred Heart of Jesus is a devotional with long and historic provenance within Christianity, and in modern times has been established as a Solemnity for the universal Church.

The Solemnity was first celebrated in France. The liturgy was approved by the local bishop at the behest of St. John Eudes, who celebrated the Mass on August 31, 1670. The celebration was quickly adopted in other places in France. In 1856, Pope Pius IX established the Feast of the Sacred Heart as obligatory for the whole Church. Continue reading

Most Sacred Heart of Jesus

In 1905, at the dedication of our current church, our parish was renamed “Sacred Heart” and consecrated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. The Sacred Heart of Jesus is a devotional with long and historic provenance within Christianity, and in modern times has been established as a Solemnity for the universal Church.

The Solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus is a celebration that falls 19 days after Pentecost, on a Friday. The liturgical feast was first celebrated in Rennes, France. The liturgy was approved by the local bishop at the behest of St. John Eudes, who celebrated the Mass at the major seminary in Rennes on August 31, 1670. You’ll notice that the first celebration was not situated in the days following Pentecost. St. John Eudes composed a Mass and a set of prayers for outside the Mass (referred to as an “Office”) that were quickly adopted in other places in France.  Continue reading

Love and the Sacred Heart

Sacred-Heart-JesusToday we celebrate the patronal feast of our parish, the Solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus. Simply put, what we celebrate is the love of God symbolized by the heart of Jesus. You can read more about the devotion and solemnity by following the link on the front page of our parish website.

Think about it…if we are celebrating the love of God – and especially symbolized by the heart of Jesus – we are celebrating God’s love for us; a pretty awesome thing to contemplate. Of course, your contemplation will be shaped by what you already think of love. You know… in English we can say “I love you” and… not a lot more without adding modifiers or descriptors. For example, “I really, really love you” – which sounds more like trying to convince someone than an intimate moment. “I like you” or “I am fond of you” does not carry the same gravitas or conviction. Love and the English language is road that does carry you too far. Kiswahili is a different road with lots of choices. There are as many as 21 different verbs for love. In addition to the love a parent has for a child (different that which a child has for the parent) and such other familial loves, Kiswahili acknowledges that the love shared by newlyweds is different from the love shared between a couple who forged their love in the cauldron of marriage over a 50 year different. Continue reading