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The Feast of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus

Were it expedient, I would for thee alone suffer all that I have suffered for the whole world.” –Our Lord to Saint Gertrude the Great

 

 “My love for souls is yet the same as that love which I bore them at the time of my Passion; I would die as many times as there are souls to save.” –Our Lord to Saint Mechtilde

 

Jesus loves each one of us as much as He loves all men.” –Saint John of the Cross

 

There is no devotion greater, more essential, or more foundational than that of the Love of Jesus Christ a.k.a. His Sacred Heart.  Indeed, it is our Lord Himself who commanded this devotion when He said:

 

Take up my yoke upon you, and learn of me, because I am meek, and humble of heart: and you shall find rest to your souls. (Matt. 11:29)

 

Is it any wonder that Saint John desired to rest his head upon the chest of our Lord just over His most precious and Sacred Heart during the institution of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, and his very own ordination?!

 

Peter turning about, saw that disciple whom Jesus loved following, who also leaned on his breast at supper… (Jn 21:20)

 

It is said that those who knew Saint Philip Neri desired to remain close to Him and in particular his heart, because when they did so they were freed from all temptations and were inflamed with a love of God.  Saint Philip’s heart burned with such an intense love for Christ that the part of his Cassock over his heart was often physically scorched as if burned.  What must it have been to be close to the Heart of Christ!

 

But we don’t have to wonder, because the devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus finds perfect expression and application in the devotion to the Blessed Sacrament.  It is interesting to note that when tests have been done on Eucharistic miracles where the Host bled or actually became flesh it was discovered that the flesh was heart tissue.

 

Anyone who has spent any amount of time devoutly praying before the Blessed Sacrament will know the incredible power of the presence of our Lord and the effect the nearness of the Sacred Heart of Jesus has on one’s prayer.  This is why Saint Alphonsus Liguori and Saint Teresa of Avila, the Doctor of Prayer, both most highly recommend making ones daily meditation, if at all possible, before our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament.

 

Now the devotion to our Lord’s Sacred Heart goes all the way back to apostolic times as I have said, but as happens throughout the history of the Church there was a great cooling of this greatest of all devotions over the centuries as the Mystical Body was dealt many terrible blows and was event rent asunder.

 

In the late 13th century two incredibly holy sisters were living together in a Benedictine convent and one of the two was even the Abbess.  They were Saint Mechtilde and Saint Gertrude the Great.  Our Lord appeared to both Sisters and revealed to them this great devotion of His Sacred Heart, but the world was not read to hear this great message from Heaven.

 

It was not until four centuries later when our Lord appeared to Saint Margaret Mary Alacoque in her convent in France and gave her the revelations of His Sacred Heart and commissioned her to publish this devotion far and wide.  And so now we are blessed in the Church with this glorious Feast, and this most wonderful devotion to which the entire month of June is especially devoted since this feast most often falls in this month.

 

Now, in regard to the devotion to the Sacred Heart one cannot omit a mention of that great work: Humility of Heart, by Father Cajetan Mary de Bergamo.

 

This book, without a doubt, will cut you to the quick.  It will lay bare your sinfulness to you and your pride most of all.  This book if read with the correct spirit and in conjunction with much prayer will most certainly change your life, because it can bestow upon you one of the greatest graces we can obtain: knowledge of self.  It is so very important that we come to knowledge of ourselves and it is something we should pray for each day.  When we know ourselves we know our predominant faults and we can see why we do the things we do, but most importantly we can then begin the long process of overcoming these faults by the sweet merciful grace of God.

 

This book is short and to the point and it will give you a clear vision into your own heart and soul, which will allow you to draw close to our Lord Jesus and His Sacred Heart. The English translation of this book was made by Cardinal Herbert Vaughn, Archbishop of Westminister England, in 1903.  In the last months of his life he wrote and introduction to the work which concludes with this final paragraph:

 

“I have the strongest possible conviction that our Lord desires to be served, especially in a country like England, where we are ‘the little flock,’ by a great development of religious activity among the laity, acting in co-operation with and under the guidance of the clergy. But I am equally convinced that unless these new workers are formed on the humility of heart which our Lord told all of us to learn of Him they and their overtures will be rejected by God and man. It is for this reason that I have dedicated this volume, written by a most holy and learned missionary, many times commended by zealous popes and bishops, to the Ladies of Charity as well as to the Priests for whose Ordination I have been responsible.”

 

Once this book has broken you down the next book you ought to read, meditate upon, and seek to live out is: The Imitation of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, by Father Peter J. Arnoudt S.J..  This book will teach you in a most precise and yet inspiring way how to become a saint and to unite your heart with that of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

 

 

 

Saint Alphonsus Maria de Liguori

 

Taken from the Section Concerning the Novena to the Sacred Heart of Jesus

 

The devotion of all devotions is love for Jesus Christ, and frequent meditation on the love which this amiable Redeemer has borne and still bears to us. A devout author laments, and most justly, the sight of so many persons who pay much attention to the practice of various devotions, but neglect this ; and of many preachers and confessors, who say a great many things, but speak little of love for Jesus Christ: whereas love for Jesus Christ ought to be the principal, indeed the only, devotion of a Christian; and therefore the only object and care of preachers and confessors towards their hearers and penitents ought to be to recommend to them constantly, and to inflame their hearts with, the love of Jesus Christ. This neglect is the reason why souls make so little progress in virtue, and remain grovelling in the same defects, and even frequently relapse into grievous sins, because they take but little care, and are not sufficiently admonished to acquire the love of Jesus Christ, which is that golden cord which unites and binds the soul to God.

 

For this sole purpose did the Eternal Word come into this world, to make himself loved : I am come to cast fire on the earth, and what will I but that it be kindled? (Lk 12:49)  And for this purpose also did the Eternal Father send him into the world, in order that he might make known to us his love, and thus obtain ours in return ; and he protests that he will love us in the same proportion as we love Jesus Christ : For the Father Himself loveth you, because you have loved Me.

 

Moreover, he gives us his graces as far as we ask for them in the name of his

Son : If you ask the Father anything in My name, He will give it to you. And he will admit us to the eternal beatitude in so far only as he finds us conformable to the life of Jesus Christ: For whom he foreknew, He also predestinated to be made conformable to the image of His Son. But we shall never acquire this conformity, nor even ever desire it, if we are not attentive to meditate upon the love which Jesus Christ has borne to us. For this same purpose it is related in the life of the Venerable Sister Margaret Alacoque, a nun of the Order of the Visitation, that our Saviour revealed to this his servant his wish that in our times the devotion and feast of his Sacred Heart should be established and propagated in the Church, in order that devout souls should by their adoration and prayer make reparation for the injuries his heart constantly receives from ungrateful men when he is exposed in the Sacrament upon the Altar. It is also related in the life of the same venerable sister, written by the learned Monseigneur Languet, Bishop of Sens, that while this devout virgin was one day praying before the Most Holy Sacrament, Jesus Christ showed her his heart surrounded by thorns, with a cross on the top and in a throne of flames ; and then he said thus to her : “Behold the heart that has so much loved men, and has spared nothing for love of them, even to consuming itself to give them pledges of its love, but which receives from the majority of men no other recompense but ingratitude, and insults towards the Sacrament of love ; and what grieves me most is, that these hearts are consecrated to me.” And then he desired her to use her utmost endeavors in order that a particular feast should be celebrated in honor of his divine heart on the first Friday after the Octave of Corpus Christi. 

 

And this for three reasons: I. In order that the faithful should return thanks to him for the great gift which he has left them in the adorable Eucharist ; 2. In order that loving souls should make amends by their prayers and pious affections for the irreverences and insults which he has received and still receives from sinners in this Most Holy Sacrament ; 3. In order that they might make up also for the honor which he does not receive in so many churches where he is so little adored and reverenced. And he promised that he would make the riches of his Sacred Heart abound towards those who should render him this honor, both on the day of this feast, and on every other day when they should visit him in the Most Holy Sacrament.

 

This devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus Christ is nothing more than an exercise of love towards this amiable Saviour.  But as to the principal object of this devotion, the spiritual object is the love with which the heart of Jesus Christ is inflamed towards men, because love is generally attributed to the heart, as we read in many places of Scripture : My son, give Me thy heart. My heart and my flesh have rejoiced in the living God. The God of my heart, and the God that is my portion forever. The charity of God is poured forth in our hearts by the Holy Ghost who is given to us.  But the material or sensible object is the most Sacred Heart of Jesus, not taken separately by itself, but united to his sacred humanity, and consequently to the divine Person of the Word.

 

This devotion in the course of a short time has been so extensively propagated, that besides having been introduced into many convents of holy virgins, there have been about four hundred confraternities erected of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, established with the authority of the Prelates in France, in Savoy, in Flanders, in Germany, in Italy, and even in many heathen countries ; and these confraternities have also been enriched by the Holy See with many indulgences, and also with the faculty of erecting chapels and churches with the title of the Sacred Heart, as appears from the brief of Clement X in the year 1674, mentioned by Father Eudes in his book (page

468), and referred to by Father Gallifet, of the Company of Jesus, in his work on the Excellence of the devotion to the Heart of Jesus.

 

And many devout persons hope that the Holy Church may some day grant permission for the Office, and proper Mass, in honor of the most Sacred Heart of Jesus Christ. We know, indeed, that even in the year 1726 this request was made through the medium of the same Father Gallifet, who was the postulator of it ; he explained that the Sacred Heart of Jesus deserved this special veneration, because it was the sensible origin and the seat of all the affections of the Redeemer, and especially that of love ; and because it was also the centre of all the interior sorrows which he suffered during his life. But, as far as my weak judgment goes, I believe that this good religious did not obtain his petition because he urged it upon grounds which were dubiously tenable. It was therefore justly objected to his views that it was a great question as to whether the affections of the soul were found in the heart or in the brain ; and even the most modern philosophers, with Louis Muratori in his moral philosophy, adopt the second opinion, viz., of the brain. And that therefore, as there had been no judgment pronounced concerning this disputed point by the Church, which prudently abstains from such decisions, the request made was not to be granted, inasmuch as it was ground on an uncertain opinion of the ancients. And it was moreover said, that as this special motive for the veneration of the Sacred Heart had failed, it would not be right to grant the petition for the Office and Mass ; because otherwise this might be a precedent for similar requests in favor of the most holy side, of the tongue, the eyes, and other members of Jesus Christ s body. This is the substance of what I find recorded in the celebrated work on the canonization of the saints, of Benedict XIV, of blessed memory.

 

But the hope we entertain that this concession will some day be granted in favor of the heart of our Lord, is not built upon the above-mentioned opinion of the ancients, but on the common opinion of philosophers, both ancient and modern, that the human heart, even though it may not be the seat of the affections and the principle of life, is, notwithstanding, as the most learned Muratori writes in the same place, “One of the primary fountains and organs of the life of man.” For the generality of modern physicians agree in saying that the fountain and the principle of the circulation of the blood is the heart, to which are attached the veins and arteries ; and therefore there is no doubt that the other parts of the body receive their principle of motion from the heart. If, therefore, the heart is one of the “ primary fountains” of human life, it cannot be doubted that the heart has a principal share in the affections of man. And, indeed, one may observe from experience, that the internal affections of sorrow and love produce, a much greater impression on the heart than on all the other parts of the body. And especially with regard to love, without naming many other saints, it is recorded of St. Philip Neri, that in his fervors of love towards God, heat came forth from his heart so that it might be felt on his chest, and his heart palpitated so violently that it beat against the head of any one that approached him ; and by a supernatural prodigy our Lord enlarged the ribs of the saint round his heart, which, agitated by the ardor he felt, required a greater space to be able to move. St. Teresa herself writes in her life, that God sent several times an angel to pierce her heart, so that she remained afterwards inflamed with divine love, and felt herself sensibly burning and fainting away, a thing to be well pondered on, as we perceive from this that the affections of love are in a special manner impressed by God in the hearts of the saints ; and the Church has not objected to grant to the Discalced Carmelites the proper Mass in honor of the wounded heart of St. Teresa.

 

It may be added, that the Church has declared worthy of particular veneration the instruments of the Passion of Christ, such as the lance, the nails, and the crown of thorns, granting a particular Office and Mass for their special veneration, as is mentioned by Benedict XIV. in the work and place referred to, where he quotes particularly the words of Innocent VI., who granted the Office for the lance and the nails of our Lord, and these are the words: “We think it right that a special feast were celebrated in honor of the special instruments of his Passion, and particularly in those countries in which those instruments are said to be, and that we should encourage the faithful servants of Christ in devotion to them by concession of the divine Offices.”

 

If, therefore, the Church has judged it right to venerate by a special Office the lance, the nails, the thorns, because they came in contact with those parts of Christ s body which were particularly tormented in the Passion, how much more have we not reason to hope that a special Office may be granted in honor of the most Sacred Heart of Jesus Christ, which had such a great share in his affections, and in the immense internal sorrows that he suffered in seeing the torments that were prepared for him, and the ingratitude which, after all his love for them, would be shown him by men ? This was the cause of the bloody sweat which our Lord afterwards endured in the Garden, because such a sweat can only be explained by a strong compression of the heart, by which the blood, being impeded in its course, was forced to diffuse itself through the exterior parts; and this compression of the Heart of Jesus Christ could not arrive from any other cause than from the internal pains of fear, of weariness, and of sorrow, accord ing as the Evangelists write: He began to fear, and to be heavy and sad. But, however this may be, let us now endeavor to satisfy the devotion of souls enamoured of Jesus Christ, who are desirous

to honor him in the most Holy Sacrament, by a Novena of holy meditations and affections to his Sacred Heart.*

 

* (That desire of St. Alphonsus was realized a few years afterwards, and even during his lifetime. In 1765 the permission to celebrate the feast of the Sacred Heart by an Office and a Proper Mass on the Friday after the octave of Corpus Christi was granted to several churches by Clement XIII.; nearly all the dioceses of the Catholic world asked and successively obtained the same permission; and Pope Pius IX. by a decree of August 23, 1856, in answer to a request of the bishops of France, rendered this feast obligatory for the universal Church.)

 

 

 

On the Great Love which Jesus Christ has shown to Us, and our Obligation to Love Him

 

The Savior of the World, Whom, according to the Prediction-of the Prophet Isaiah, Men were One Day to see on this Earth (“and All Flesh shall see the Salvation of God”), has already come. We have not only seen Him conversing-among Men, but we have also seen Him Suffering and Dying for the Love of us. Let us, then, this morning, consider the Love which we Owe to Jesus Christ, at least through Gratitude, for the Love which He bears to us. In the First Point we shall consider the Greatness-of the Love which Jesus Christ has shown us; and in the Second we shall see the Greatness of our Obligations-to Love Him.

 

 

First Point – On the Great Love which Jesus Christ has shown to us

 

“Christ”, says Saint Augustine, “came on Earth that Men might Know how much God Loves them”. He has come, and, to show the Immense Love which this God bears us, He has given Himself entirely to us, by Abandoning Himself to all the Pains of this Life, and afterwards to the Scourges, to the Thorns, and to all the Sorrows and Insults which He Suffered in His Passion, and by offering Himself to Die, Abandoned by all, on the Infamous Tree of the Cross. “Who Loved me, and Delivered Himself for me” – Galations 2:20.

 

Jesus Christ could Save us without Dying on the Cross, and without Suffering. One (1) Drop of His Blood would be Sufficient-for our Redemption. Even a Prayer, offered-to His Eternal Father, would be Sufficient; because, on-account-of His Divinity, His Prayer would be of Infinite (∞) Value, and would therefore be Sufficient-for the Salvation of the World, and of a Thousand (1000) Worlds. “But”, says Saint Chrysostom, or another Ancient Author, “what was Sufficient for Redemption, was not Sufficient for Love”. To show how much He Loved us, He Wished to shed not only a Part-of His Blood, but the Entire of it, by Dint-of Torrents. This may be Inferred-from the Words which He used on the Night before His Death: “This is My Blood of the New Testament, which shall be Shed for many” – Matthew 26:28. The Words shall be Shed show that in His Passion, the Blood of Jesus Christ was Poured-forth, even to the Last Drop. Hence, when after Death, His Side was opened-with a Spear, Blood and Water came-forth, as if what then flowed, was All that remained-of His Blood. Jesus Christ, then, though He could Save us without Suffering, Wished-to embrace a Life of Continual Pain, and to Suffer the Cruel and Ignominious Death of the Cross. “He humbled Himself, becoming Obedient unto Death, even to the Death of the Cross” – Philippians 2:8.

 

“Greater Love than this no Man hath, that a Man lay down his Life for his Friends” – John 15:13. To show His Love for us, what more could the Son of God do, than Die for us? What more can One (1) Man do for Another, than give his Life for him? “Greater Love than this, no Man hath”. Tell me, my Brother, if One of your Servants – if the Vilest Man on this Earth, had done for you what Jesus Christ has done, in Dying through Pain on a Cross, could you remember his Love for you, and not Love him?

 

Saint Francis of Assisi appeared to be unable to think of anything but the Passion of Jesus Christ; and thinking of it, he continually Shed Tears, so that by his Constant Weeping, he became nearly Blind. Being found one day, Weeping and Groaning at the Foot of the Crucifix, he was asked the Cause-of his Tears and Lamentations. He replied: “I Weep over the Sorrows and Ignominies of my Lord. And what makes me Weep still more, is that the Men for whom He has Suffered so much, Live in Forgetfulness of Him”.

 

O Christian, should a Doubt ever enter your Mind, that Jesus Christ Loves you, Raise your Eyes and look-at Him, hanging-on the Cross. Ah! says Saint Thomas of Villanova, the Cross to-which He is Nailed, the ‘Internal’ and ‘External’ Sorrows which He endures, and the Cruel Death which He Suffers for you, are Convincing Proofs of the Love which He bears you. “Testis crux, testes dolores, testis amara mors quam pro te sustinuit”. Do you not, says Saint Bernard, hear the Voice-of that Cross, and of those Wounds, crying-out to make you feel that He Truly Loves you? “Clamat crux, clamat vulnus, quod vere dilexit”.

 

Saint Paul says that the Love which Jesus Christ has shown, in Condescending-to Suffer so much for our Salvation, should Excite us to His Love, more Powerfully than the Scourging, the Crowning with Thorns, the Painful Journey-to Calvary, the Agony of Three (3) Hours on the Cross, the Buffets, the Spitting in His Face, and all the other Injuries which the Savior endured. According to the Apostle, the Love which Jesus has shown us, not only Obliges, but in a certain manner ‘Forces’ and ‘Constrains’ us, to Love a God Who has Loved so much. “For the Charity of Christ presseth us” – 2Corinthians 5:14. On this ‘Text’, Saint Francis de Sales says: “We Know that Jesus, the True God, has Loved us so as to Suffer Death, and even Death on the Cross, for our Salvation. Does not such Love, put our Hearts, as it were, under a Press, to Force from them Love, by a Violence which is Stronger in proportion as it is more Amiable?”.

 

So Great was the Love that Inflamed the Enamored Heart of Jesus, that He not only Wished to Die for our Redemption, but during His Whole Life, He Sighed Ardently for the Day on which He should Suffer Death, for the Love of us. Hence, during His Life, Jesus used to say: “I have a Baptism wherewith I am to be Baptized: and how am I Straitened (stressed), until it be accomplished?” – Luke 12:50. In My Passion, I am to be Baptized with the Baptism of My Own Blood, to Wash-away the Sins of Men. “And how am I Straitened?”. How, says Saint Ambrose, explaining this ‘Passage’, am I Straitened (stressed) by the Desire of the Speedy Arrival of the Day of My Death. Hence, on the Night before His Passion He said: “With Desire I have Desired to eat this Pasch with you, before I Suffer” – Luke 22:15.

 

“We have”, says Saint Lawrence Justinian, “seen Wisdom become Foolish, through the Excess of Love”. We have, he says, seen the Son of God become, as it were, a Fool, through the Excessive Love which He bore-to Men. Such, too, was the Language of the Gentiles, when they heard the Apostles Preaching that Jesus Christ, Suffered Death for the Love of Men. “But we”, says Saint Paul, ” Preach Christ Crucified, unto the Jews indeed a Stumbling Block, and unto the Gentiles, Foolishness” – 1Corinthians 1:23. Who, they exclaimed, can Believe that a God, most-Happy in Himself, and Who stands in Need-of no one, should take Human Flesh and Die for the Love of Men, who are His Creatures? This would be to Believe that a God became Foolish, for the Love of Men. “It appears Folly”, says Saint Gregory, “that the Author of Life should Die for Men”. But, whatever Infidels may ‘Say’ or ‘Think’, it is of Faith that the Son of God has Shed all His Blood, for the Love of us, to Wash-away the Sins of our Souls. “Who hath Loved us, and Washed us from our Sins, in His Own Blood” – Revelation 1:5. Hence, the Saints were Struck Dumb with Astonishment, at the consideration-of the Love of Jesus Christ. At the Sight-of the Crucifix, Saint Francis of Paul could do nothing but exclaim, O Love! O Love! O Love!

 

“Having Loved His Own, who were in the World, He Loved them unto the End” – John 13:1. This Loving God was not content-with showing us His Love by Dying on the Cross for our Salvation; but, at the End of His Life, He Wished-to leave us His Own Flesh, for the Food of our Souls, that thus, He might Unite (1) Himself entirely to us. “Take ye, and eat. This is My Body” – Matthew 26:26. But of this Gift, and this Excess-of Love, we shall speak at another Time, in Treating-of the most Holy Sacrament of the Altar. Let us pass-to the Second Point.

 

Second Point – On the Greatness of our Obligation to Love Jesus Christ

 

He who Loves, Wishes to-be Loved. “When”, says Saint Bernard, “God Loves, He Desires nothing else than to be Loved”. The Redeemer said: “I am come to Cast Fire on the Earth; and what Will I, but that it be Kindled?” – Luke 12:49. I, says Jesus Christ, came on Earth, to Light-up the Fire-of Divine Love in the Hearts of Men, “What Will I, but that it be Kindled?”. God Wishes nothing else from us, than to be Loved. Hence the Holy Church Prays in the Following Words: “We Beseech Thee, O Lord, that the Spirit may Inflame us with the Fire which Jesus Christ cast upon the Earth, and which He vehemently Wished to be Kindled”. Ah! what have not the Saints, Inflamed-with this Fire, accomplished! They have Abandoned all things – Delights, Honors, the Purple and the Sceptre – that they might Burn with this Holy Fire. But you will ask what are you to do, that you too may be Inflamed-with the Love of Jesus Christ. Imitate David: “In my Meditation, a Fire shall Flame out” – Psalm 38:4. Meditation is the Blessed Furnace, in which the Holy Fire of Divine Love is Kindled. Make Mental Prayer every Day, Meditate on the Passion of Jesus Christ, and Doubt-not, but you too shall Burn-with this Blessed Flame.

 

Saint Paul says, that Jesus Christ Died for us to make Himself the Master of the Hearts of All. “To this End, Christ Died and Rose again; that He might be Lord both of the Dead and of the Living” – Romans 14:9. He Wished, says the Apostle, to give His Life for All Men, without a Single Exception, that not even One (1) should live any longer for himself, but that all might live only to that God, Who condescended-to Die for them. “And Christ Died for All; that they also who Live, may not now Live to themselves, but unto Him Who Died for them” – 2Corinthians 5:15.

 

Ah! to correspond-to the Love of this God, it would be necessary that another God should Die for him, as Jesus Christ Died for us. O Ingratitude of Men! A God has condescended-to give His Life for their Salvation, and they will not even think on what He has done for them! Ah! if each of you thought frequently of the Redeemer, and on the Love which He has shown us in His Passion, how could you but Love Him with your Whole Hearts? To him who sees with a Lively Faith, the Son of God suspended by Three (3) Nails on the Infamous Gibbet, every Wound of Jesus ‘Speaks’ and ‘Says’: “Thou shalt Love the Lord thy God”. Love, O Man, thy Lord and thy God, Who has Loved thee so Intensely. Who can resist such Tender Expressions! “The Wounds of Jesus Christ”, says Saint Bonaventure, “Wound the Hardest Hearts, and Inflame Frozen Souls”.

 

“Oh! if you knew the Mystery of the Cross!”, said Saint Andrew the Apostle to the Tyrant by whom he was Tempted to Deny Jesus Christ. O Tyrant, if you knew the Love which your Savior has shown you, by Dying on the Cross, for your Salvation; instead of Tempting me, you would Abandon all the Goods of this Earth, to give yourself to the Love of Jesus Christ.

 

I conclude, my most Beloved Brethren, by Recommending you henceforth to Meditate Every Day on the Passion of Jesus Christ. I shall be Content, if you Daily devote to this Meditation, a Quarter of an Hour. Let each, at least procure a Crucifix: let him keep it in his Room, and from time-to-time give a Glance at it saying: Ah! my Jesus, Thou hast Died for me, and I do not Love Thee! Had a Person Suffered-for a Friend, Injuries, Buffets, and Prisons, he would be Greatly Pleased to find that they were ‘Remembered’ and ‘Spoken-of’, with Gratitude. But, he should be Greatly Displeased, if the Friend, for whom they had been Borne, were Unwilling to ‘Think’ or ‘Hear-of’ his Sufferings. Thus Frequent Meditation on His Passion is very Pleasing-to our Redeemer; but the Neglect of it, greatly-provokes His Displeasure. Oh! how Great will be the Consolation which we shall receive in our Last Moments, from the Sorrows and Death of Jesus Christ, if during Life, we shall have Frequently Meditated on them, with Love! Let us not wait till others, at the Hour of Death, place in our hands, the Crucifix; let us not wait till they Remind us of all that Jesus Christ Suffered for us. Let us during Life, embrace Jesus Christ Crucified; let us keep ourselves always United with Him. He who practices Devotion to the Passion of Our Lord, cannot but be Devoted to the Dolors of Mary, the Remembrance of which, will be to us a Source-of Great Consolation, at the Hour of Death. Oh! how ‘Profitable’ and ‘Sweet’, the Meditation of Jesus on the Cross. Oh! how Happy the Death of him, who Dies in the Embrace-of Jesus Crucified, accepting Death with Cheerfulness, for the Love of that God, Who has Died for the Love of us.

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