Starting the morning off with God
is the key to strength and success in your day!
The Solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus is celebrated on the octave day of the feast of Corpus Christi. In the 17th century Jesus appeared in a vision to St. Margaret Mary Alacoque asking her to request that this feast be celebrated in honor of his Sacred Heart in reparation for the ingratitude of mankind toward the sacrifice of his love on the Cross. Pope Pius IX extended the feast of the Sacred Heart to the universal Church in 1856. The imagery of Christ pointing to his heart, on fire with love, signifies his immense and infinite love for humanity which took Him to the Cross to die for our salvation. The Sacred Heart of Jesus desires that all mankind draw close to Him in love and trust. Today this devotion, given to the faithful by Our Lord himself, is among the most popular of the Catholic Church.
St. Barnabas (1st c.) was a Jew from the island of Cyprus who was given the name Joseph at birth. He is mentioned by name in the New Testament. A convert to the Christian faith in Jerusalem, he sold his property and preached the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles alongside St. Paul the Apostle and St. Mark the Evangelist. He was given the surname Barnabas, meaning 'Son of Exhortation' and was highly esteemed among the Christian leaders at Jerusalem and Antioch, almost ranked among the twelve Apostles themselves. St. Luke said of him, "...for he was a good man, full of the Holy Ghost and of Faith." It was Barnabas who vouched for the genuineness of St. Paul's conversion and had him accepted as a Christian by the other Apostles. Barnabas was the cousin of St. Mark, and Barnabas famously disputed with St. Paul over bringing Mark along on their missionary journey, which caused the two famed preachers to part ways and travel separately as recorded in the Acts of the Apostles. They were later reconciled. Barnabas was eventually stoned to death around the year 61 A.D. His feast day is celebrated on June 11.
Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus is one of the most popular Catholic devotions. Although it was beloved in previous centuries, Jesus appeared to St. Margaret Mary Alacoque in 1673, showing her a vision of the now-famous image of His Sacred Heart, surrounded by flames. He said to her: “My Heart is so full of love for men that It can no longer contain the flames of Its burning love. I must discover to men the treasures of My Heart and save them from perdition." She was given the special mission to spread devotion to His Sacred Heart throughout the Church. Jesus gave St. Margaret Mary many promises associated with this devotion, and requested that a feast day in honor of His Sacred Heart be instituted on the Friday after the Octave of Corpus Christi. In 1856, the Feast of the Sacred Heart was spread to the Universal Church, and in 1899 Pope Leo XIII solemnly consecrated all mankind to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, calling it “the great act” of his pontificate.
O Jesus, through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I offer you my prayers, works, joys, and sufferings of this day for all the intentions of your Sacred Heart, in union with the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass throughout the world, for the salvation of souls, the reparation of sins, the reunion of all Christians, and in particular for the intentions of the Holy Father this month. Amen.
Almighty and everlasting God, have mercy upon Thy servant, Pope Francis, our Supreme Pontiff, and direct him, according to Thy loving kindness, in the way of eternal salvation; that, of Thy gift, he may ever desire that which is pleasing unto Thee and may accomplish it with all his might. Through Christ Our Lord. Amen.
Our Father. Hail Mary.