09 Our Father sent us His ‘SELFIE’ in the HEART of Jesus - Sr. Manisha Gonsalves RSCJ

posted May 30, 2018, 11:04 AM by Neil D'Souza   [ updated May 30, 2018, 11:04 AM ]
The Incarnation of Jesus makes all the difference: an invisible God becomes visible in Jesus. "We beheld His glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father." (Jn 1:14) How else could we ever recognise the "Face" of the Father? How would we ever realise the essence of God's Nature as unconditional, perfect Love? The Heart of Jesus as an open "Book" mirrors/manifests for us the depths of the Father's infinite Love for our world, for entire humanity, for EACH of us. "He who has seen me has seen the Father," said Jesus to His disciples reassuringly, as they asked Him to "show" them the Father. Through His words and teaching, He reiterated clearly, "The Father and I are one." We too are invited to celebrate this Reality through the Feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. It calls us to "study"/contemplate that open Heart, to discover Its deep desires, to dwell in It as in our Home, and to renew our commitment as partners in Jesus' Mission to spread the Fire of the Father's Love to the ends of the earth.

Devotion to the Heart of Jesus in the Church has a long, glorious history. Much was done to propagate and popularise this devotion by St Margaret Mary Alacoque (1647-1690) who, after personal visions of Christ, wrote, "He disclosed to me the marvels of His Love and the inexplicable secrets of His Sacred Heart." The 'promises' of Jesus to those who consecrate themselves and their families to Him, to those who make reparation for the outrages against Love, and fulfil other recommended practices have attracted the attention of Catholics for many centuries to date. Pope Pius XII in his encyclical 'Haurietis Aquas' (1956) highlighted the Sacred Heart as a symbol of the divine Love which Jesus shares with the Father and the Holy Spirit. However, the veneration of the Heart of our Redeemer dates back to Calvary, when the soldier's lance pierced the side of the crucified Christ - "They shall look on Him whom they have pierced." (Jn 19:37)

What can this mean for us in the third millennium? The piercing of the heart of Jesus is not an event of 2000 years ago. When we contemplate the wounded heart of christ, we touch the pierced heart of humanity. We become more aware of our own brokenness that begs for the healing waters that flowed from his open side. We recall Jesus' open invitation: "come to me, all who labour and are heavy laden, and i will give you rest..." (mt 11:28) that invitation flows from our heavenly father who cares for his children at all times, especially in their moments of pain and sorrow. It is the father who has entrusted the son with every grace to satisfy the deep longings of the human heart. "all things have been delivered to me by my father, and no one knows the son, except the father, and no one knows the father, except the Son AND anyone to whom the son chooses to reveal him." (mt 11:27).