Greetings for the Feast of the Sacred Heart 2024 

The Feast of the Sacred Heart (7 June) marks a special day in the life of the Sisters of Saint Joseph. When seeking approval for the Institute from Rome, the Sacred Heart was part of the official title bestowed upon the new Institute.  

For us as Josephites, the symbol of the Sacred Heart, speaks of God’s great love for each one. It tells us that our God is a God who is full of compassion, tenderness, and mercy whose love is boundless. The Sisters’ Constitutions reminds us ‘that God’s compassionate love, symbolised by the Sacred Heart’ and calls us to be the compassionate face, hands and feet in our world today. 

In the gospel Jesus invites us “Come to me you who are weary and find life burdensome and I will refresh you, for I am gentle and humble of heart”. (Mt 11:28-30) Mary MacKillop heard this invitation and when life was difficult she would rest in the heart of God. She writes to the Sisters: “When storms rage… I quietly creep into the abyss of the Sacred Heart and securely sheltered there my soul is in peace”. Like Mary MacKillop, Pope Francis invites us in times of loneliness, exhaustion, frustration, oppression and homelessness to surrender our worries and fears into the heart of the loving God and to find in these moments, ‘The riches hidden in the Heart of Jesus.’ (Pope Francis – 2020)  

As I pondered the significance of the Feast of the Sacred Heart for the Sisters of Saint Joseph, I was drawn to reflect upon two words – sacred and heart. At the heart of our lives, we are called to become the presence of the Sacred in our world and to honour that Sacredness in one another and in all of creation. For the Sacred Heart holds the infinite capacity for love. Drawn into this mystery, we discover the call to witness to what God is doing through us and through every act of kindness and concern, we let the world know that it is loved.   

May Christ dwell in your hearts on this day as you celebrate the gift of the Sacred Heart in our story. 

Sr Monica Cavanagh
Congregational Leader