This Friday, July 1, we celebrate the Feast , or Solemnity, of the Sacred Heart. Falling 19 days after Pentecost, this year’s celebration comes later than most years. Usually it is a June feast day.
The first liturgical Feast of the Sacred Heart was celebrated in France on August 31, 1670, through the efforts of St. John Eudes. A Mass for the Sacred Heart was approved by the Holy Father in 1765 for use in Poland and Portugal, and in 1788 a similar Mass was given approval for use in Venice, Austria and Spain. In 1856, Pope Pius IX established the Feast of the Sacred Heart in the liturgical calendar.
The founder of the Priests of the Sacred Heart, Fr. Leo John Dehon, credits his mother with his own devotion to the Sacred Heart. She kept close to her the Manual of the Sacred Heart, which Fr. Dehon later said “Was the real guide to my spiritual life.”
Fr. Dehon was convinced that God’s love can have an impact on our lives and that his grace can affect and move us. This was the bedrock of his appreciation of the Sacred Heart devotion and its message, “Behold this heart that has loved so much.”
Oblation, reparation and a devotion to the Sacred Heart are at the heart of who we are as Priests of the Sacred Heart. These are the fundamental concepts, based in the love found in the Sacred Heart of Jesus, upon which Fr. Leo Dehon built his religious community. They are the concepts upon which we base our lives.
Devotion to the Sacred Heart helps us see Jesus in our hearts, our homes and the Eucharist. This devotion inspires us to love, to be compassionate and forgiving, and to reach out to those in need.
“The Heart of Jesus is overflowing with tenderness and compassion for all those who suffer, those who endure hardships, those who go hungry, and for the sick and the infirm.
“His is the Heart of a Father, the Heart of a Mother, the Heart of a Shepherd. His is a priestly Heart which suffers with us when we are suffering.”
-Fr. Leo John Dehon
Join us in a special feast-day Mass at Sacred Heart Monastery on July 1, at 11 a.m. For more information contact Carrie Beuning at 414-425-3383 or email@example.com.
Click here to read Fr. General’s feast-day letter.