Posted by: fvbcdm | June 23, 2016

Feast of Saint Joseph Cafasso (23 June 2016)

“The Word was made flesh and dwelt among us.” This very simple but enormously profound statement from the beginning of Saint John’s gospel is familiar to all of us. God became man. Man has a heart. We speak of the heart as the center of love: “I give you my heart; you have stolen my heart; my heart is broken over the death of my beloved, etc.” So the heart of the God-made-man is the element in the person of Our Divine Lord whereby he loves us and asks us to love him in return.

We speak of “incarnational theology.” Theology is the study of God, and the incarnation is the process whereby “the Word became flesh,” or God became man. The Father and the Holy Spirit did not become man, so don’t have a heart. But the Word, the Divine Son, did enter into our human flesh, and so has a heart which we adore.

In the 17th century, God raised up two saints in the Church who preached a special devotion to the heart of Jesus. They were Saint John Eudes, a priest, and Saint Margaret Mary Alacoque, to whom Jesus appeared a number of times and said to her, “Behold this heart which has loved men so much and has been so little loved in return.”

Then, in the 20th century, God raised up for us another saint, this time Saint Faustina Kowalska of Poland who died in 1938, to whom he also appeared. This time he appeared with white and red rays emanating from his Sacred Heart. He explained to Faustina that these rays represented the water and the blood that flowed from his heart when the soldier opened his side while he was hanging dead on the cross. And that water and blood, in turn, symbolize the graces that flow to us through the sacraments of Baptism and the Eucharist. It is the love of Christ for us, shown principally by his sufferings and death on the cross, that gives to his church the power of sanctification and salvation. Divine love is the fuel, if you will, by which power is produced to keep the Church and all its members and activities in successful operation. The Sacred Heart of Jesus is the divine generator sending the power of sanctity into all those who come into contact with Christ our Lord. We say in the Litany of the Sacred Heart, “Heart of Jesus, glowing furnace of love, have mercy on us.” Let that be our prayer. Thank you for seeking God’s truth. God bless you. Father Victor Brown, O.P.

Note:  This message was composed some years ago.

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