As many of you know, the last couple of months we’ve begun renewing devotion in the parish and amongst our Knights of Columbus to the Sacred Heart of Jesus by adding a First Friday evening Mass and allnight Eucharistic adoration. Devotion to the Sacred Heart is one of the richest and most popular devotions of our Catholic faith. And for good reason. As St. Paul teaches, in Christ “are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Col 2:3). And Matthew 6:21 says “For where your treasure is, there also will your heart be.” The treasures of God the Father’s love and wisdom are stored in the Heart of Christ and drawing near to his heart unlocks these treasures for us. God promised the prophet Ezekiel that he would obliterate our stony hearts that render us unresponsive to his love and give us new hearts of flesh which will enable us to walk in his ways (Ez. 11:19). Devotion to the Sacred Heart is an effective way of allowing God to do that; to give us new hearts aflame with charity. Indeed one of the twelve promises Jesus made to St. Margaret Mary Alacoque when asking her to promote this devotion in the 1670s was that it would touch even the hardest of hearts.
Our own Blessed Michael McGivney knew the power of the Sacred Heart of Jesus to mold our hearts to Christ’s. It was a lesson he was taught in childhood and remembered all his life. One of the few surviving artifacts from his family home in Waterbury is a painting of the Sacred Heart on porcelain and he was buried with the image as well. It was love of Christ, modeled first in his family home, that moved him to his priestly ministry and his care for the orphaned and oppressed.
Mindful of this, the Knights in our parish are spearheading the renewal of this great devotion, inviting all to spend some time with Jesus every First Friday. Another of Jesus’ twelve promises to St. Margaret Mary was that those who receive Holy Communion on nine consecutive First Fridays would be granted the grace of final penitence. So we begin our devotions with Mass and then proceed to adoration. February 5th, our next First Friday starts with 8:00pm Mass at St. Mary’s followed by exposition of the Blessed Sacrament until 7:30am on Saturday. If you are able to help us keep watch with the Lord during the night asking him to open the treasures of His Sacred Heart to our parish and all of our families, you can commit to taking an hour of adoration by signing up on one of the sheets in the vestibule of either St. Mary’s or St. Joseph’s or online at
The events of the last year have taught us that our world needs the mercy of Jesus more than ever. Now is the time when Our Lord is inviting us all to renew our appreciation, love, and devotion to His Most Sacred Heart and especially to the fountain of grace He pours out upon us when we adore Him in the Blessed Sacrament.
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us!
Blessed Michael McGivney, pray for us!
Fr. John Paul