Patient and Most Merciful
By Father Charles M. Mangan
Only God Himself knows how many spiritual writers, teachers and preachers during the last twenty centuries have taken up the important theme of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus. The subject of the Heart of Christ is ever alluring and pertinent. Truly, it is a topic that cannot be fully explored.
It makes eminent sense for us to consider often the Sacred Heart of Jesus especially in our era that, sadly, is renown for its friendship with sin. Sin is all around us. There is even a kind of revelry, a boasting of sin that we find much too frequently.
Yet, despite the fascination for and submission to sin present in our age, we remain filled with unshakable trust because the Sacred Heart of Jesus is patient and merciful beyond measure. Christ delights in extending His unparalleled compassion and forgiveness to all, but particularly to those lost in sin.
When reciting the Litany of the Sacred Heart, we recognize and profess Jesus' abundant goodness: "Heart of Jesus, patient and most merciful." What more needs to be said? The Son of God--compassion itself--desires that we live with Him forever in Heaven. He is patient with us sinners and continually offers His mercy to us, trying to persuade us that it is better to acknowledge humbly our sinfulness, bask in His forgiveness and finally inherit Everlasting Life than to cling stubbornly to the transitory, meaningless "pleasures" that evil affords and suffer for all eternity in Hell.
By turning resolutely and confidently to Christ, we are assured that we will be forgiven our sins, no matter how numerous or grave. The Second Person of the Most Blessed Trinity became incarnate--He took flesh--so that we could be free of our sins and enjoy authentic liberty that eventually will blossom into that life-giving union with Him in Paradise.
What an unfathomable treasure we have in the Sacred Heart of Jesus! He is our God Who loves us, sustains us, nourishes us with His Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity in the Sacrament of the Most Holy Eucharist and forgives our transgressions in the Sacrament of Penance.
Where would we be without the Heart of Christ? Hopelessly laden with sin without any possibility of salvation--forever!
Jesus wants and expects that we will grow in our relationship with Him. He wishes that we avail ourselves of prayer, the Sacraments, Sacred Scripture, the Holy Rosary, spiritual reading, devotion to Our Blessed Lady, Saint Joseph and the Angels and Saints, acts of charity and mortification, almsgiving, etc. He realizes better than we what we require in order to be more conformed to Him. It is as if His Sacred Heart "aches" for every opportunity to show us how patient and merciful He really is.
What are we waiting for? Why do we fear? We fly to the Heart of Christ, aware that He is our refuge and strength Who is pleased to give us what we lack.
Heart of Jesus, patient and most merciful, have mercy on us!
Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life
http://www.catholic.org , IT
Monsignor Charles M. Mangan - Official, 390 666161125
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