June 30: The Means and Ways of the Apostolate of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus

Based on the Writings of St. Joseph Sebastian Pelczar

Whoever would like to be called a devotee and lover of the Heart of Jesus, beholding this Heart, must work as much as possible to increase God’s glory upon earth. Zeal for the glory of God should be our first care and daily task.  As St. Joseph Sebastian Pelczar says, following from St. John Chrysostom: “If we seek only our own gain, we live in the world in vain. Be therefore like the industrious worker in what refers directly to God’s glory and increases it upon earth.”

The lover of the Heart of Jesus desires also the salvation of others.  First of all, the love of God compels him.  He who loves God and wants to please Him shares the Divine intention and is concerned for its fulfillment. The example of Christ urges Him on to care for each person, knowing that the price of salvation is immeasurable. Moreover the person is a royal work of God, more precious than the whole world. Each person’s worth is as much as the Blood of the Savior. Whoever participates and supports the priests in their pastoral work, gives great joy to the Heart of Jesus. St. John Chrysostom says even that whoever will convert but one sinner is more pleasing to the Lord than the one who gives all his possession to the poor. The source of such an apostolate proceeds from zeal for the glory of God, care for the salvation of people and the good of the Church. These only can impel us to action to fulfill God’s great plans.

The apostolate of the Heart of Jesus is realized through prayer, penance, suffering, sacrifice and deeds. The Heart of Jesus ardently desires a prayerful intercession, therefore the true apostle prays eagerly and frequently for the intentions of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus.  A true apostle of this Heart also spreads His Kingdom through penance and suffering. He makes expiation not only for his own sins but for those of others as well. The crosses that the Lord sends him, he carries eagerly and courageously so that God will be honored.  A true apostle of the Heart of Jesus contributes to His glory by spiritual and material gifts that help toward the educational and charitable work of the Church. He works also, as his state of life and abilities allow him, to spread faith and devotion in individuals, families and society. He conscientiously fulfills his obligations yet at the same time works for the sanctification of those around him. He gives testimony to his faith before unbelievers or those indifferent in their faith. He distributes valuable books, magazines and films. Having access to the mass media, he makes use of it to spread truthful information and good and to defend moral and religious values.

He cares for the fainthearted, the abandoned and those lost in life. In a word, the apostle of the Heart of Jesus does as much good as he can, and does not seek in it his own gain. He does all this in union with the Church and strives interiorly for meekness, courage, prudence and wholehearted love for neighbor.

Today, how much we need such apostles of the Heart of Jesus, full of renunciation, dedication and zeal!


Heart of Jesus, Hear! – Sung by our Sisters
Here I Am, Lord – Sung by our Sisters
I Have Loved You – Sung By Our Sisters
Holy Is His Name – Sung by our Sisters

June 29: The Apostolate as the Expression of Our Love for the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus

Based on the Writings of St. Joseph Sebastian Pelczar

The Christian who truly strives for perfect love for the Lord Jesus is one who is overcome with ardent devotion for His Heart, shares His aspirations and desires, and strives with all his strength that they may be fulfilled. What then are these desires of the Heart of Jesus who is reigning now in glory and is hidden in the Sacred Mystery of the Altar?

As in His earthly life, so now also He desires glory for His Heavenly Father and the salvation of mankind.  This is the reason why the Son of God took upon Himself a human body, why He lived hidden in Nazareth and publicly proclaimed the Good News. For this purpose He also instituted the sacrament of the priesthood, died upon the cross and remained with us in the Most Blessed Sacrament. The Heart of Jesus ardently desires that His Church would be spread to all nations throughout the whole world and would embrace all centuries. He desires that His Church would live and grow in peace, and would enlighten and sanctify all people. Everything that helps the Church in fulfilling its mission is dear to the Heart of Jesus.  In this task, what is most necessary and helpful for the Church is: the submission in faith to the Holy Father, the holiness and zeal of priests and religious, the just government of people, the propagation of missions and the development of charitable works of mercy and the various Catholic organizations.

True devotees and lovers of the Heart of Jesus assume His aspirations and desires. They not only strive eagerly for their own sanctification alone but become apostles of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus as well. St. Joseph Sebastian Pelczar urges: “Brothers and sisters in Christ, especially you fathers and mothers of families, you should watch that your children be holy and that each of your homes become a domestic Church. All of you should remain beneath the banner of the cross, close to your bishops and priests. All of you should be Catholic ‘in spirit and in truth’ and, at the same time, must work for the sanctification of your families. Participate in Catholic organizations and activities, and do not push Catholic-social action only onto the priests and a few volunteers…There are not many with strong Catholic norms who are always and everywhere faithful to them in private and public life, at home and school, in government and everywhere else. There are not many with an ardent heart who will identify with the joys and sufferings of the Church, and who, for every religious cause will be ready to sacrifice. There are not many with an apostolic spirit who, grateful for their grace of faith, try to draw others to God.”

There is also a great number of half-hearted and lukewarm Christians who remove themselves from the life of the Church and avoid priests and going to church. There are many who serve only the gods of the modern world, namely, pleasure, riches and vainglory. The task, now, for the apostles of the Divine Heart and to which the love of God compels them, is to enkindle the spirit of Christ in human hearts.

I Have Loved You – Sung By Our Sisters
Soul of My Savior – Sung by our Sisters
Veni Sponsa, Christi – Come, Spouse of Christ, receive the crown the Lord has prepared for you for all eternity. Sung by Sr. Mary Joseph Calore, SSCJ accompanied by Sr. Mary Barbara Hoyt, SSCJ on organ, and Sr. Angela Marie Igou on violin.

June 28: The Heart of the Most Tender Father

Based on the Writings of St. Joseph Sebastian Pelczar

From the creation of the world, God has shown Himself to be a Father to the whole human family, but in a special way towards His chosen people.  Nevertheless, it was only the Lord Jesus who brought to earth the most joyful news: that God is our best Father. He knows what we need and what is good for us. God the Father cares for us incomparably more than other creature, and He loves us infinitely. The Heart of the Son of God was always most closely united to His Heavenly Father.  This was shown especially in His prayer in Gethsemane.

Jesus Christ not only taught about His Father but He also showed Himself to be the best Father to us. With what great love He taught the ignorant, healed the weak, consoled the afflicted and fed the hungry with spiritual and earthly bread. In the parables of the Good Shepherd, the lost sheep and the prodigal son, the Lord Jesus revealed the depths of His Heart filled with love toward sinners and the desire for their conversion. Longing to give His children supernatural and eternal life, He died for them, enduring the most horrible pains and insults. Can there be any greater love? He has loved us to the end, to the end of the ages, and beyond all measure, for He has remained among His children – remaining not simply in one place, Palestine, but remaining upon all the altars in so many churches. He remained not in the radiance of glory as on Mount Tabor, but clothed Himself instead in the garment of the greatest humiliation, so as not to terrify His children, but rather by meekness to draw them to Himself. He remained with us, although foreseeing that many of His ungrateful children would reject and even insult Him. Jesus stayed not only to live among His children in churches but also to visit them in their homes and to enter their souls. O Lord, how good a Father you are!  Truly, you have kept the promise that you made to us at the Last Supper: Do not let your hearts be troubled (Jn 14:1). I will not leave you orphaned (Jn1 4:18).

For the sake of His children, this Father has built a great home –the Catholic Church, with which He has supplied everything that serves their good and salvation, that is, light, warmth and nourishment. He lives and acts continually in this home; He governs this home; and He protects this home that the waves of the ages will not carry it off or fill it with error or sin. As our Father, the Lord Jesus is providing food for us His children, since He has left in His home the spiritual bread – the bread of truth and bread of Sacrament – and which will never be wanting.

The Heart of the Father loves all children although He does not provide for them all in the same way. Those who serve Him faithfully or try to serve Him better, He exalts and showers with supernatural gifts and sweetness, as we see in the lives of so many Saints. Unfortunately, there are also blind children who run from Him and thereby perish forever out of hunger. Oh, how His Heart grieves over them!

Relying on the omnipotence and goodness of God, trust God in everything and throughout your entire life; and affectionately nestle upon this Heart. This Heart is the throne of mercy from which we can always hear:  Come, all you, to me (Mt 11:28).

Here I Am, Lord – Sung by our Sisters
Good, Good Father – Chris Tomlin

June 27: The Heart of the King

Based on the Writings of St. Joseph Sebastian Pelczar

The Solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus can also be called the feast of Christ, King of the Universe since the reign of the Divine Heart is based upon true love. The preface for this day expresses it beautifully, speaking about the Kingdom of truth and life, holiness and grace, justice, love and peace.

St. Joseph Sebastian Pelczar teaches that as God-Man and King of heaven, the Lord Jesus lowered His royal majesty, took upon Himself the form of a servant and emptied Himself unto death on the cross. Now all the hosts of Angels and Saints humbly bow before Him and sing an endless hymn of glory.

The Lord Jesus is King of the earth. All people are subject to His authority and, if not in life, then after death they must bend the knee before Him. Unseen, He rules in His Kingdom that is the Church, thus the gates of hell shall not prevail against her.

The Lord Jesus is the victorious King who conquers the kingdom of Satan, for He has vanquished his gates, and by His death He has conquered the prince of darkness.

Jesus Christ is also King of the Church Suffering, that is, of the souls in Purgatory who endure their torments as the temporal punishment they did not expiate during their life. The Lord Jesus has pity upon the souls who are there. “Without a doubt,” St. Joseph Sebastian writes, “these souls, uniting themselves with the Church Triumphant and Militant, adore their Savior and King, present on the Altar and in our tabernacles.” He permits us on earth to help the souls in Purgatory by our prayers, almsgiving, good deeds, fasting, mortification, and, above all, by the Sacrifice of the Holy Mass. This gracious King permits that we recommend our needs to their prayers, all of us who are continuing on the path to His Kingdom.

The Lord Jesus as Lord and Creator is King to all people, but especially of Christians. The soul, heart and conscience of Christians must be completely surrendered to the rule of Christ the King. St. Joseph Sebastian Pelczar writes: “Through holy baptism the Lord Jesus becomes King of the soul, and the soul becomes His Kingdom. The soul, therefore, declares through the lips of the godparents that it renounces the kingdom of Satan and surrenders itself totally under the scepter of Jesus Christ. From this time forward the soul will be ruled by His principles, listen to His commandments and offer Him due sacrifice. Joy to the soul, who throughout its entire life, fulfills this promise and never rebels against its King, or who after each transgression will return immediately to God’s grace. In such a soul the Lord Jesus reigns completely, and His Kingdom is a Kingdom of light, for, with Jesus, trust, love and patience enter the human heart. This Kingdom is also the Kingdom of freedom, for wherever He reigns there is a holy freedom. It is also the Kingdom of glory because He makes His servants kings.”  Each Christian is the friend of the Heavenly King whom the Lord honors with His great mark of confidence. If one would be great, powerful and glorious, more than any king or monarch in the world, then wholly surrender to the dominion of the King of the kings, who is Jesus Christ the Lord.

Motto of Our Congregation – Sung by our Sisters
Heart of Jesus, Hear – Sung by our Sisters
Sacred Heart Song – Michael John Poirier
Behold This Heart – Fr. Joseph Gill

June 26: The Heart of the Master, our Shepherd and Guide

Based on the Writings of St. Joseph Sebastian Pelczar

The Apostles and disciples of the Lord Jesus saw in Him their good Teacher and Master. They were full of admiration for His teaching and power, but especially for the virtues that radiated from His Person.  Above all, they held Him in the highest esteem since there was also no contradiction between His teaching and His way of life. They were in awe of the inexhaustible love He showed them and to all whom He met. They also felt intuitively that the power of His love exceeded their greatest expectations in this regard.

Closer to our times, St. Joseph Sebastian Pelczar, disciple and apostle of the Heart of Jesus presents us not only with what is taken from the tradition of the ages but also draws upon what he himself found.  He writes that Jesus Christ, while even still in the womb of Mary, by his life was teaching us to love obedience, recollection, silence and mortification.  In the manger He showed us surrender, poverty of spirit, humility and meekness.  Later, in His earthly life, He was continually giving examples of sacrifice and entrustment to Divine Providence. In Nazareth and Jerusalem during His boyhood, He taught us how to advance in goodness, how to love religious observance and customs, and how to live a hidden life of obedience, devotion and hard work. As He grew up, He was giving us the example of perfect prayer, of how to combat Satan and to fight the temptations of the flesh, the world and the pride of life.

The Lord Jesus became the Master because He brought God’s truth and proclaimed it by His life and His words. He taught it with great respect and love, as well as with clarity, accommodating Himself to His listeners and often using parables. In many places and situations He also spoke by His very demeanor to those mentioned in the Gospel.  He has spoken clearly by His Passion and death; likewise, through His glorious life and by remaining with us in the Most Blessed Sacrament. Today the Lord Jesus teaches His truth and Divine life – from the lips of His Church and by His presence in the most holy mystery of the Altar.

The Heart of the Lord Jesus is also the exemplar and Master since it is the school of all virtues. In It, the inexperienced can learn a holy life, and especially love, for it was out of love that this Heart has sacrificed Himself upon the cross and continues to sacrifice Himself in the Sacrament of the Altar. He calls out to us: Learn from me, for I am gentle and humble of heart (Mt 11:29). The Heart of Jesus is at once purest and holiest. It is meek and sweet, merciful and sensitive. It burns with zeal for the Father’s glory and our salvation. It reveals itself as humble, patient and obedient unto death.

Jesus Christ is also our best Shepherd and Guide to heaven. He penetrates the hidden matters of the human heart and draws His sheep to Himself. He seeks them out in the wilderness, carries them in His arms, and feeds them with His very self.

The Lord Jesus, our Guide, is at once our best Counselor. If we come to Him with trust and ask, “Lord Jesus, direct me”, He immediately responds to us.

To receive light in all doubts and difficult situations, knock at the Heart of your Shepherd, hidden in the Most Blessed Sacrament, and call as well upon the intercession of our Mother of Good Counsel.

Shepherd Me, O God – Sung by our Sisters

Heart of Jesus, Hear! – Sung by our Sisters
Sacred Heart Song – Michael John Poirier
Behold this Heart – Fr. Joseph Gill

June 25: The Heart of the Most Faithful Friend

Based on the Writings of St. Joseph Sebastian Pelczar

Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, I believe in your love for me!

In our life we sometimes feel alone and abandoned.  We desire to have someone close who would be a support, help and consolation. The Holy Scripture calls such a faithful friend a treasure that not everyone finds (cf. Eccl 6:14).  St. Joseph Sebastian Pelczar writes, “The Lord Jesus is such a friend to everyone, especially in the Most Blessed Sacrament.  During His earthly life, the Lord Jesus loved everyone infinitely, yet His Heart was not indifferent to the human sentiments of friendship towards some. By this He wanted to give us an example of what kind of friendship we should keep and what this friendship entails.”

Among His chosen friends were, above all, His disciples, whom He kept close to Him throughout three years and whom He not only taught but also endured and sanctified. During the Last Supper He said to them openly: I no longer speak of you as slaves, for a slave does not know what his master is about. Instead, I call you friends, since I have made known to you all that I heard from my Father (Jn 15:15).  Among those He called friend were Lazarus from Bethany, Peter and James –who accompanied Him on Mount Tabor, and John – to whom He entrusted His Mother from the cross.

When He ascended into heaven, He did not cease to be a friend to all, especially to those who believe in Him, trust Him and love Him. For them, He remains on earth a prisoner of love in so many tabernacles, and desires to be united most intimately with them. In holy baptism the Lord Jesus admits the soul to union with Himself. Later, He strengthens and perfects this friendship whenever the Christian receives Him devoutly in Holy Communion.

The Lord Jesus is a faithful friend, since He accompanies us at each step of our life to support us in our work, shield us in battle, console us in suffering, and lift us up when we fall. 

He accompanies us to the very end…

St. Joseph Sebastian Pelczar

He is a sincere friend in that He desires not his own benefits, but our true good.  He is a noble friend, since He shares everything with us, and not only gives His life for us, but even gives His very self as food.  He is a tender friend, because He never abandons us unless we ourselves reject Him. But if we do so, He draws close to us, seeking our reconciliation with Himself.  If we shed but one tear of sincere contrition, but, with confession cry out: ‘I have sinned, but, do Thou, O Lord, forgive me!” He immediately forgets even the gravest transgressions and restores us to His friendship.  The Lord Jesus is a faithful friend, since He accompanies us at each step of our life to support us in our work, shield us in battle, console us in suffering, and lift us up when we fall.  He accompanies us to the very end, until with His assistance we happily enter that eternal realm where Jesus bestows His glory and satisfies us with His happiness.

 Consider that the goodness and tenderness of this Friend is shown especially when He consoles the afflicted – for example at the wedding at Cana, or when He is approached by the Canaanite woman; when He raises Lazarus from the dead and consoles his two sisters; or when in Naim He restores a young man to life, thus taking pity on a mother’s tears. This Friend does not even abandon us at the final and sometimes great agony at our moment of death.


I Have Loved You – Sung By Our Sisters
Abide With Me – Matt Maher

Sacred Heart Song – Michael John Poirier
Behold This Heart – Fr. Joseph Gill

June 24: The Heart of Our Most Beloved Spouse

Based on the Writings of St. Joseph Sebastian Pelczar

Para mi Jesús es:  La vida que quiero vivir,  la luz que quiero reflejar,  el amor que quiero expresar,  el gozo que quiero compartir. Amén 🙏

Receiving holy baptism, the soul opens itself to the love of God. At the same time the Lord Jesus becomes the Spouse of the soul and the soul is made His bride. He espouses the soul with the ring of union with Himself; introduces the soul to His home, that is, the Church; allows participation in His treasures on earth and afterward in His Kingdom in heaven. He does this under the condition that the bride will remain faithful to Him.

“Oh, how great your dignity, O human soul,” St. Joseph Sebastian Pelczar writes, “that you have such a Spouse whose beauty the sun and moon admire. Arise and know how great you are in the eyes of God. Christ, your Spouse, did not spare His blood for you; He bountifully made you rich; He shared with you His Kingdom and raised you to His throne. See how much you should love Him; what ardent thanks you should offer Him; and how faithful you should be to Him in everything.”

The Lord Jesus became the Bridegroom of all. In Him we find the strongest love and support, the surest advice and consolation. He is the example and author of a life both chaste and wholly dedicated to God. Not only is the God-Man alone the purest, but He loves chastity in us as well. He chose for His Mother the Immaculate Virgin; He loved above all others the virgin disciple John; and lastly He recommended virginity as a counsel and means to perfection. Moreover, to all who love chastity, the Lord Jesus gives a bountiful reward and the beatitude of seeing God.

 We can say of the religious life that it is similar to the marriage resulting from the wedding vows. Therefore we rightly call religious profession a marriage with Jesus Christ.  Entrusting his heart to the bride, the bridegroom eagerly shares with her his goods also. Similarly, the Lord Jesus shares with the person given to Him in religious consecration not only His truth, His grace, His merits, His Mother, and the gifts placed within the treasury of the Church, but He also gives Himself to her in order to transform her into His very self. He asks only our faithful and lasting love, which He promises to abundantly reward in His Kingdom.

Whoever responds to this bridal love of Jesus by undertaking the evangelical counsels, may experience the paradox that confounds others. Renouncing his own will through obedience, he gains true freedom in God. Renouncing the disposal of material goods for the care of the interior life, he is filled with the inexhaustible treasures of God’s grace. Finally, taking the vow of chastity opens him to the wider perspective of complete union with God in love.

By the grace of God, millions of priests, hermits, religious men and women and lay people as well have kept and are keeping chastity. They imitate in this life the chaste, poor and obedient Lord Jesus. He Himself gave these counsels so as to remove the greatest obstacles from those who would embrace them, while at the same time giving the means for resemblance to Him and the way to draw near to Him.

  Blessed are the single-hearted for they shall see God (Mt 5:8).

Veni, Sponsa Christi – Vocalist-Sr.Mary Joseph Calore, Organist-Sr. Mary Barbara Hoyt, Violin-Sr. Angela Marie Igou
As I Kneel Before You – Sung by our Sisters
Heart of Jesus, Hear – Sung by our Sisters
Sacred Heart Song – Michael John Poirier
Behold This Heart – Fr. Joseph Gill

June 23: The Heart of the God Man

Based on the Writings of St. Joseph Sebastian Pelczar

St. Joseph Sebastian Pelczar writes, “What can be more wonderful in heaven or on earth, what more worthy of honor and love, than the Heart of the God-Man and thus the Heart of Supreme Wisdom, of holiness itself and infinite love, the Heart of our Creator… Savior … King … Friend … Brother … and Father.”

This Heart is the most perfect of God’s masterpieces, encompassing within Itself the ineffable treasures of God’s wisdom and love. This Heart is the seat of the holiest emotions, the school of the noblest virtues, the exemplar and font of sanctity. The Lord Jesus, being God-Man, has two wills, and therefore has a twofold love: Divine and human. This Divine love is infinite since it is an attribute of the divine nature belonging to the three Persons of the Most Holy Trinity.  Who can comprehend it?  No one can even put into words the human love of the Savior. It is higher than the heavens, deeper than the ocean, wider than the universe and longer than eternity. If we would combine the love of all the Apostles, martyrs, confessors and virgins, in a word, of all the saints who throughout the ages adorned God’s Church; if we would gather all the ardent desires and enclose them in one heart; adding to it the whole ardor with which the choir of Angels burns toward their God; if we would crown all these with the marvelous fire that burns within the Immaculate Heart of the Most Holy Mother of God, we will then see only a faint reflection of the love the Lord Jesus has toward each one of us, regardless of our malice and unworthiness.

[I]t was not enough for the love of the Lord Jesus that He has offered Himself upon the altar of the cross. He desired to remain with us at every moment until the end of the ages and thus He allowed Himself to be locked in churches as the prisoner of love.

In the Bethlehem manger, this love shone with an ineffable radiance, for God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten one, that this Son of God – taking upon Himself a human body from the Immaculate Virgin Mary, could manifest Himself as an infant in swaddling clothes. This love was even more radiantly revealed on the cross.  Thus, did not the Savior say: There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends (Jn 15: 13), and He Himself gave His life for His enemies, that is, for sinners. However it was not enough for the love of the Lord Jesus that He has offered Himself upon the altar of the cross. He desired to remain with us at every moment until the end of the ages and thus He allowed Himself to be locked in churches as the prisoner of love. The Most Blessed Sacrament of the Altar is the summit of the love of the God-Man.  According to the words of St. Augustine, God, although most wise, knew not how to give more; though most powerful, was not able to give more; though richest, had nothing more to give. He could demand that we build for Him temples of marble and jewels and yet He does not disdain even the poorest of churches, if only human hearts would resemble His Heart that is full of love.  This Most Sacred Heart, reigning now upon a throne of glory in the glorified Humanity of Christ, is the throne, center, and sign as well of His Divine and human love.

O what great happiness that in our churches, both day and night, the Lord dwells in all His power and in all His love!

St. Joseph Sebastian Pelczar

O what great happiness that in our churches, both day and night, the Lord dwells in all His power and in all His love!

Ave Verum Sung by our Sisters
Heart of Jesus, Hear – Sung by our Sisters

June 21: The Commandment of Love

Based on the Writings of St. Joseph Sebastian Pelczar

Love is the desire of the human heart and its very life. The commandment to love both God and neighbor is the Divine Heart’s covenant of love.  You shall love the Lord your God with your whole heart, with your whole soul, and with all your mind. You shall love your neighbor as yourself (Mt 22:37.39).  “Such is the way commanded us by the Divine Master and highest Lawgiver,” writes St. Joseph Sebastian Pelczar, “and is also enjoined on us by the mind, enlightened by faith, which teaches us that we are all children of the one Father in heaven and at the same time are members of one great family and brothers among ourselves…Our love of neighbor is the measure of our love for God. There is a close connection between the two. They are like two streams flowing from one spring, like two flames from one fire, such that one cannot exist without the other. The love of neighbor is the characteristic of true Christians. It is the most beloved virtue of Christ. The Savior not only gave us this commandment, but by His life also taught us how to fulfill it.”

Jesus loves us with a most tender love, and this, the love of a father, brother, friend and spouse. He has loved us to the point of pouring Himself out for us.  He has endured for us all suffering, bitterness and the shame of the cross.  Jesus gave Himself completely to us.  He has loved us to the end.

In the Cenacle on the eve of His Passion, the Lord Jesus repeated the commandment of love for neighbor: I give you a new commandment: Love one another. As I have loved you. (Jn 13:34). And how did He love us? Even before we were able to know Him and to respond to His love, He first loved us.  The Lord Jesus loved those who were unworthy of His love and who would often repay Him with ungratefulness. Jesus loves us with a most tender love, and this, the love of a father, brother, friend and spouse. He has loved us to the point of pouring Himself out for us.  He has endured for us all suffering, bitterness and the shame of the cross.  Jesus gave Himself completely to us.  He has loved us to the end.

Despite our human mistakes and ingratitude, the Lord Jesus does not break our friendship with Him.  In a like manner, we too must love our neighbor. St. Joseph Sebastian Pelczar develops this thought using the canvas of St. Paul’s hymn on love.  Such a love should be pure, not self-interested; it must be persistent and extending to all, even our enemies. It is to be expressed in thought, heart, word and deed.  Thus, it avoids suspicion and rash judgments, does not exclude anyone but rather respects others because of God.  This love allows us to respect our neighbor as a creature of God and to see in him the image of the Creator.  We further see in him a child of the Heavenly Father, a temple of the Holy Trinity and above all a brother and friend of Christ. True love for neighbor avoids hatred and the desire for revenge; it repels any aversion and duplicity.  Moreover, it forgives injury and is undeterred by unkind words; it guards against antipathy or our acting upon the caprices of the heart.  The spirit of faith and Christian charity governs true love. The person nurturing within himself the love of neighbor, guards against hardness of heart and envy; he wishes others well and rejoices in their happiness. He avoids slander, so common and damaging a fault. The speech of love is true yet delicate; kind but without hypocrisy; sweet yet without flattery; finally it is meek and gracious but without exaggeration. The one who loves neither hurts his neighbor nor consciously and willfully causes him any pain, rather he works zealously for his benefit and salvation.

As I Kneel Before You – Sung by our Sisters

June 22: Mercy According to the Sacred Heart of Jesus

Based on the Writings of St. Joseph Sebastian Pelczar

St. Luke has written in reminding us of the Lord Jesus’ sermon about having a practical love for our enemies: Be merciful as your Father is merciful (Lk 6:36).  Mercy that meets the spiritual and temporal needs of others is our Christian duty, and must be the norm of the disciples of Christ. and yet of itself it principally belongs to the natural disposition of the human heart.

“God has formed the human heart,” St. Joseph Sebastian Pelczar writes, “in a such way, that it increases in nobility, peace, consolation and power in proportion to its compassion and mercy shown to others. Also sometimes one of our noble deeds will serve as the means for our conversion or sanctification.”  Moreover, the good of the believer requires fulfilling deeds of mercy, for their fruits also are inestimable. Nothing draws as many souls to God as does mercy joined to mortification and suffering. The testimony that is most eloquent is that of our deeds and sacrifices.  In such manner, mercy becomes a sign of zeal for God’s glory and the building up of the Church.

 Mercy is shown above all by our practical love of neighbor. First of all, this means the preservation and pursuit of justice. “Do no harm to your neighbor,” writes St. Joseph Sebastian, “rather do him as much good as you are able.”  Such is demanded of us by our intellect and heart, likewise by justice and society, since humanity is one great family, one great body in which individual members should care for one another and bring real help to all.

Mercy is needed especially for those who are spiritually suffering.  To be ignorant of doctrine, to suffer anxiety and sadness, to have a lack of faith and grace, to experience sin and the punishment for sin, are great spiritual sufferings. They are more painful than bodily sufferings therefore do they need greater mercy. One who loves God cannot look indifferently at how those are perishing for whom Christ shed His Blood. The rescue of sinners means to cooperate with God for the salvation of people. The hidden apostolate is a sacrificial offering most pleasing to God, since God chose to save people, and this, also through others. How then are we to help those who are suffering like this?  To not spare our pains and sacrifices in our work for their conversion; to pray for the wandering; to offer up our own crosses; to be a good example, a thing most effective; and also to admonish in an appropriate way.  These are the ways to be of help.

Mercy also demands our obedience and gratitude to God. We receive everything from God, and, through us, God desires to show forth His Heart toward the many who are needy. Mercy is an imitation of the example of Christ who became mercy to the beggars and bread to the hungry. To the thirsty He comes as the source of grace, to the sick He comes not only as the physician but as the medicine as well. He is consoler to the suffering and shepherd to those who stray. Whoever fulfills mercy imitates Christ and becomes like a “merciful God to his neighbor” and an instrument of divine Providence.

I Have Loved You – Sung By Our Sisters
“Heart of Jesus, Hear” – Sung by our Sisters
Sacred Heart Song by Michael John Poirier
Behold this Heart – By Fr. Joseph Gill