St. Margaret Mary Alacoque
At that time Jesus said in reply, “I give praise to you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, for although you have hidden these things from the wise and the learned you have revealed them to the childlike.
Yes, Father, such has been your gracious will.
All things have been handed over to me by my Father. No one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and anyone to whom the Son wishes to reveal him.
“Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest.
Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart; and you will find rest for your selves.
For my yoke is easy, and my burden light.”
A passage in one of the wisdom writings in the Old Testament says “when you sit down at the table of a king, pay attention to the type of meal he provides for you, and know that one day you will have to provide the same meal for Him in return.” What is said of the king, you can say about anybody. I think that we recognize that in the whole exchange of human community whenever we go over to another’s house and they provide and meal for us, there is a certain likeness that we want to provide back for that person if they were to come to our house.
Today we celebrate Saint Margaret Mary Alacoque. This is the Saint who made the Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus very popular within our Roman Catholic Church. This Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, finds its greatest expression in the place of Jesus and Mary that has their heart exposed on their breast with one half side being blue and one half side being more reddish in color. St Margaret Mary Alacoque encouraged our devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, and encouraged us to dedicate our houses to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. A simple Google search will show very beautiful house blessings, and an enthroning of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the immaculate heart of Mary.
This Sacred Heart, this Jesus, is the King who has provided for us a rich meal. But if the Wisdom writing stands true then we have to ask ourselves “what kind of meal has He provided us?” The answer is that He has provided us with His very self and this Eucharistic celebration that we have is, Jesus Christ giving His entire body. In one of the Eucharistic miracles in Italy from the traditions of the church, there was once a Priest who doubted whether or not the Eucharist was the true body and blood of Christ. At that moment the Eucharist turned from being visibly bread and became visibly flesh. They have preformed scientific test on this visible flesh and they found that it was in fact cardiac flesh.
The feast that Jesus provides for us is the feast of His heart. A heart that has been pierced as the images show us with a lance, so that out of that heart comes the blood. That blood has the two rays of blue and red. What are these two rays of blue and red? What do these two colors indicate? They indicate two things, the red indicates His mercy and the blue indicates His charity.
Mercy; Jesus died to save us from our sins and His open heart has been poured forth to us out of a great since of compassion. As a person’s heart breaks for another person who has experienced a tragedy, Jesus heart has literally been broken open as He has experienced the tragedy of our sins. Having pity on us in our sins, He Himself pours forth his mercy upon us so that we may have His love and His healing. That mercy is the drips of blood that come from his heart. It is not only the mercy of Jesus Christ but it’s also the charity of Jesus Christ that restores us and lifts us up and it encourages us to have charity for others, charity for God, charity in our life.
This is the meal that we are called to provide the two fold meal that is both mercy and charity that comes from our very selves. It is not enough for us to just receive the flesh of Jesus Christ. We must become Jesus Christ for other people. We must sacrifice ourselves on the altars of our own lives. We must pour out our own heart for other people. And our heart must become the one that is pierced and bleeding so that mercy can come from us, so that charity will come from us.
So let us increase our own devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, so that in imitating Him, we can bring mercy and charity to the entire world.