June 24, 2022

June 24, 2022, Sunday

Solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus

“I tell you…, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous people who have no need of repentance.”

This assertion of Jesus is where he answers the charge of the Pharisees that he is always eating and drinking with tax collectors and sinners. This is illustrated in three parables depicting how God reacts when even one sinner turns back to him, asking for forgiveness. Since there is nothing we can do to earn God’s forgiveness, it is a free gift on the part of God. It is a gift based on Christ’s deep love for us.

The feast of Sacred Heart is one of the most widely practiced Catholic devotions, wherein the heart of Jesus is viewed as a symbol of the long-suffering love and compassion of the heart of Christ towards humanity. Historically, the devotion to the Sacred Heart is an outgrowth of increasing devotion to Christ’s sacred humanity. In the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, primarily, a devotion to the passion of Jesus arose, with practices in honor of his sacred wounds, in particular the wound in the side of Jesus. With love being seen as rooted in the human heart, this became an apt reminder of the depth of Christ’s love for us.

Especially for us with a special devotion to the Eucharist, we can see our celebrations as another way in which we can come to a living encounter with Jesus offering us his love. From there, we encounter the living heart of Jesus, giving himself over and over out of love for the salvation of the world. One of the promises Jesus gave to Saint Marry Alacoque is that “fervent souls shall rise speedily to great perfection.” We need not strive for this; only be open to the love and grace that comes from Christ’s heart.

Let Us Pray:

O loving Jesus, make our hearts so like yours, and we continue here on earth the ministry that was yours here on earth.


Eucharistic Reflection – Center for Eucharistic Evangelizing (eucharisticevangelizing.com)
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About Paul J. Bernier, SSS

Blessed Sacrament Father Paul J. Bernier served for many years as the editor of Emmanuel. He is a popular writer, preacher, and director of retreats. Among his many published works is Ministry in the Church: A Historical and Pastoral Approach, Second Edition, published by Orbis Books in 2015. His most recent book is A Eucharistic Spirituality: Inspired by Saint Peter Julian Eymard – Apostle of the Eucharist, which he co-authored with Jim Brown.