Friday, June 12, 2009

The Twelfth Day of June

The Wound of the Heart of Jesus.

"All the wounds of our Lord are so many gates of salvation, thrown open to all the world; but the wound of His Heart is the widest.

"All His wounds are so many fountains, whence His graces flow in abundance; but the wound of His Heart is the clearest and most refreshing.

"All His wounds are so many streams of purple, in which we may plunge the powers of our soul, and thus heighten the price of our thoughts, words, and actions; but the wound of His Heart gives them a deeper color, a brighter luster, a more precious tint.

"All His wounds are so many characters of the book of life, in which is contained the science of the saints; but the wound of His Heart instructs us in a deeper learning than them all.

"All His wounds are places of refuge, in which the greatest criminals may find their retreat; but the wound of His Heart is the most favorable and most secure.

"The wound of His Heart speaks, like an eloquent tongue, within the secret depth of our hearts, it reminds us of the love which Jesus bears us, and asks for our love in return" (Nouet).

Let us hear the devout St. Bernard on this subject: "'This adorable Heart was pierced, that by means of this visible wound we might gain some knowledge of the invisible wound which love has inflicted on it. Ah, how could Jesus convince us more powerfully of His love, than by allowing not only His body, but even His Heart to be pierced for us?"

The melancholy and disgust, which we feel in this life, are often hurtful to our souls; it is for this reason that the Heart of Jesus has taught us to enter into His wounds, especially into that of His Sacred Heart, in order that we may find there a source of joy and consolation. Blessed Henry Suso, while plunged one day in a deep melancholy at the thought of the uncertainty of his salvation, heard a voice from heaven, which consoled him greatly. "Arise and enter into my wounds; for it is in them that your only happiness is to be found." St Austin says: "I can feel no terror at the sight of the multitude of my sins as often as I call to mind the death of our divine Lord; for my sins cannot outweigh the merits of such a death. The nails and the spear tell me that I am truly reconciled to Jesus Christ, if I love Him. Longinus opened for me the side of Jesus Christ with his lance; I entered therein, and there I rest full of security. Let him who fears, love; love casts out fear."

"O amiable wound!" exclaims St. Bonaventure, "it is by you that I have found an entrance even into the very bowels of the charity of Jesus Christ. There I take up my abode; there I find an abundance of consolation beyond all that I can express. Oh I the blindness of the children of Adam, who know not how to enter into Jesus Christ by His sacred wounds! Through them the happiness of angels is opened to us; the wall, which closed the entrance against us, is broken down, and yet we neglect to enter! Believe me, blinded men, did you but know how to enter into Jesus Christ by these sacred openings, you would there find an admirable abode. What sweetness does the soul taste in uniting itself, through those sacred wounds, to the Heart of Jesus! I have not words to explain it; make but the experiment, and you will find therein a treasure of every good.

"Here the gate of Paradise is thrown open; the flaming sword, which guarded its entrance, has been turned aside by the soldier's lance; the treasure of wisdom and eternal charity is disclosed; enter in, then, by the opening of those divine wounds. O happy lance, which was found worthy to make such an opening! Oh, had I been in its place, never would I have quitted my Savior’s side, but I should have said: ‘This is the place of my rest for ever; here will I dwell, for I have chosen it,’ Faithful soul, created to the image of God, how can you fail to be transported out of yourself! Behold your amiable spouse, who, by an excess of love, has opened for you His side, in order that He might give you His Heart!"

We read in the Chronicles of St. Francis, that a gentleman of rank who had entered a monastery of the order, not finding there the enjoyment and pleasures which he had abandoned, resolved to betake himself again to the world. The temptation was so strong, that no consideration could restrain him. But observing, as he was going away, a crucifix, on the road by which he passed, he threw himself on his knees before it, to beg for mercy. Oh! how tender and good is the Heart of Jesus! He had no sooner finished his short prayer, than he felt himself raised in ecstasy; at the same time our Lord presented Himself to him, with His Blessed Mother, and asked him why he was going away. He replied that, having been accustomed to live delicately in the world, he could not bear the austerity of the rule. Upon this, our Savior, showing him the wound of His side, comforted him, saying: "My son, bring hither your hand, and dip it in the blood of my wound, and you will find that everything will be easy to you, however difficult it may appear in itself." The novice obeyed, and afterwards, whenever any temptation or annoyance came upon him, he called to mind the Passion of the Son of God, and the loving wound of His Heart, and found that every difficulty changed at once into holy delights.

Practice: Set apart one day in the week to honor the Heart of Jesus in a special manner: Friday, for example, which has been appointed for this purpose by the Church. Pay a longer visit than usual that day to Jesus in His Blessed Sacrament, and read some book which treats of His Sacred Heart; this will help you to keep alive your fervor in this devotion. For, if you do not supply it with fuel, it will be in danger of soon dying out.

Ejaculatory Prayer: May my eyes, and my heart, O Jesus, remain forever fixed on the wound of Thy Heart! Oculi mei et cor meum ibi cunctus diebus (2 Paralip. vii. 16).

Sacred Heart of Jesus, hare mercy on us.
Immaculate Heart of Mary, pray for us.

1 comment:

Anne said...

Enter into His wound. I will set aside one day a week to do just that! I love this Sacred Heart novena and prayers. Thank you so much!