Feast of the Sacred Heart.

The heart of Jesus is viewed as a symbol of “God’s boundless and passionate love for humankind” [1] and in light of the writings of Teilhard de Chardin, Thomas Merton, Elia Delio, Beatrice Bruteau and others, is referred to as the Sacred Heart enflamed, the incarnate Word, the Cosmic Christ, the Centre of centres – intimately personal and yet boundlessly cosmic.

In living the gospel of today through the lens of the Sacred Heart, Richard Rohr reminds us that we are living in a liminal space between two worlds – before and after COVID -19. [2] Consciously aware of the suffering and impact of the current pandemic we take the opportunity to raise our consciousness of love and new tenderness in communion with the Sacred Heart and with each other with a passion for God, for humanity and all the Cosmos.

The following musings may resonate with us as we contemplate the love of the Sacred Heart in the context of the Heart of Jesus, Heart of the Cosmos and our own heart.

Teilhard de Chardin’s spirituality revolved around his childhood and adult devotedness to the Sacred Heart. His vision of the Sacred Heart as the centre of the universe assists us in enlarging our heart’s consciousness of the reality of who we are and the reality of God-in-matter – a lovingly beating world-heart at one with our heartbeat and the heartbeat of our God. [3]

Elia Delio speaks of our Life in God as a daring adventure of love—a continuous journey of putting aside our securities to enter more profoundly into the uncharted depths of God. [4]

The words of Scripture and St. Mary MacKillop testify to God’s loving presence in our lives:

I have come that you may have life, life to the full, (John 10:10) and Near the Sacred Heart we are strong and without fear.Mary MacKillop (21.02.1870)

Thomas Merton captures the vitality and intensity of God’s love as conveying the extravagance, the sheer exuberance, of love. [5]

In the writings of David Richo, we are invited to contemplate God seeking us:

Love comes looking for us. [6]

Historically the connection between the heart of Jesus and that of the heart of individuals is attributed to French Benedictine, Swami Abhishiktanananda.

As one passes from depth to depth in one’s own heart, the awakened disciple reaches the ultimate depth of the heart of Jesus. [7]

Pope Francis challenges us to touch the wounds of Jesus as Thomas asked: to enter Jesus wounds. [8]  We do this with open and responding hearts in communion with the Sacred Heart for all the suffering in today’s world particularly relating to COVID-19 that as people of hope a new world of greater compassion, equality and justice post COVID-19 might be a new reality for all.

Mary Oliver’s words could reflect the love of the Sacred Heart in the mystery of God’s exuberant and inclusive love in our troubled world when she invites us to:

Keep some room in your heart for the unimaginable. [9]
This Photo by Unknown Author is licensed under CC BY-SA-NC

Margaret Cleary rsj

[1]  Wikipedia definition
[2]  Center for Action and Contemplation,Richard Rohr- 28 April 2020
[3]  Everything Ablaze, David Richo, P. 59
[4] Omega, Elia Delio – dated 27 April, 2020
[5]  ‘The Art of Thomas Merton, John Moses, P.46
[6]  Everything Ablaze, David Richo, P.57
[7]  Radical Optimism, Beatrice Bruteau, P.96
[8]  Daily Reflections, Pope Francis, P.129
[9]  Daily Love – National Geographic (March 22)