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Friday, June 18, 2004

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Sacred Heart of Jesus

Ezekiel 34:11-16
Romans 5:5-11
Psalm 23
Luke 15:3-7

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his heart is running

"It is precisely in this that God proves His love for us: that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us." —Romans 5:8

God became incarnate. He became a human being. "In Jesus Christ God not only speaks to man but also seeks him out. The Incarnation of the Son of God attests that God goes in search of man. Jesus speaks of this search as the finding of a lost sheep (cf Lk 15:1-7). It is a search which begins in the heart of God and culminates in the Incarnation of the Word" (Towards the Third Millennium, 7). God is the Good Shepherd, humbling Himself to the point that He runs after and pursues His lost sheep. The all-holy, almighty God empties Himself (see Phil 2:7) and chases after mere human beings. This humble love of God is revealed in the prophetic vision of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

In imitation of the incarnate Jesus, the Good Shepherd, and His Sacred Heart, let us:

  • humbly chase after sinners to show God's love for them,
  • wash the feet of others (see Jn 13:4ff),
  • open and expose our hearts to others (see 2 Cor 6:11-13), even in crucified vulnerability, and
  • lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters in Christ and even for our enemies (1 Jn 3:16).

Jesus commanded and promised: "Take My yoke upon your shoulders and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble of heart" (Mt 11:29). Learn not only to love the Sacred Heart of Jesus but also to love as the Sacred Heart loves.

Prayer:  Sacred Heart of Jesus, on this day devoted to prayer for the holiness of priests, I ask for Your mercy. I put my trust in You.

Promise:  "The love of God has been poured out in our hearts through the Holy Spirit Who has been given to us." —Rm 5:5

Praise:  Praise the exposed, wounded, thorn-crowned, bleeding, and merciful Heart of Jesus!

Reference:  (For a related teaching, order our tape Sacred Heart on audio AV 19-1 or video V-19.)

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert A. Stricker, December 13, 2003

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, December 18, 2003