Thursday, June 4, 2009

Thursday Night Passio Domini, First Fridays, First Saturdays and the Two Hearts

News broke in recent days that President Obama had declared the month of June: Gay, Lesbian, Bi-sexual, and Transgender (GLBT) Pride month.

As one reader pointed out to me in an email, this is a good time to recall that June is the month of the Sacred Heart, and this is a time to make acts of reparation.

Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus goes back at least to the 11th century, but through the 16th century, it remained a private devotion, often tied to devotion to the Five Wounds of Christ. The first feast of the Sacred Heart was celebrated on August 31, 1670, in Rennes, France, through the efforts of Fr. Jean Eudes (1602-1680). From Rennes, the devotion spread, but it took the visions of St. Margaret Mary Alacoque (1647-1690) for the devotion to become universal.

In all of these visions, in which Jesus appeared to St. Margaret Mary, the Sacred Heart of Jesus played a central role. The “great apparition,” which took place on June 16, 1675, during the octave of the Feast of Corpus Christi, is the source of the modern Feast of the Sacred Heart. In that vision, Christ asked St. Margaret Mary to request that the Feast of the Sacred Heart be celebrated on the Friday after the octave (or eighth day) of the Feast of Corpus Christi, in reparation for the ingratitude of men for the sacrifice that Christ had made for them. The Sacred Heart of Jesus represents not simply His physical heart but His love for all mankind. [source]
There is a devotion to the Sacred Heart for the nine consecutive first Fridays and Assumption Grotto offers Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament in the main parish Church from 8:30am until around 6:45pm tomorrow, as it does all First Fridays.

It is also good to point out that along with devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, is the devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

Our Lady Establishes the Devotion of the Five First Saturdays

The Apparition of December 10, 1925

On this day Our Lady, holding Her Immaculate Heart in Her Hand, appeared to Lucia, and by Her side stood the Child Jesus on a luminous cloud. The Child Jesus said: "Have compassion on the Heart of your Most Holy Mother, covered with thorns, with which ungrateful men pierce it at every moment, and there is no one to make an act of reparation to remove them."

Then the Blessed Virgin Mary said to Lucia: "Look, my daughter, at My Heart, surrounded with thorns with which ungrateful men pierce Me at every moment by their blasphemies and ingratitude. You at least try to console Me and say that I promise to assist at the hour of death, with the graces necessary for salvation, all those who, on the first Saturday of five consecutive months, shall confess, receive Holy Communion, recite five decades of the Rosary, and keep me company for fifteen minutes while meditating on the fifteen mysteries of the Rosary, with the intention of making reparation to Me."

On another occasion the Child Jesus reappeared to Lucia and asked that those who practice this devotion, receive Him in Holy Communion when in the state of grace.
Reparation for what?

Catholics have always honored the Blessed Virgin on Saturday because of the pious tradition of her constant faith in Jesus on that first Holy Saturday before the Resurrection. According to Sister Lucia, five first Saturdays of reparation were requested to atone for the five ways in which people offend the Immaculate Heart of Mary [source]:
  1. attacks upon Mary's Immaculate Conception;
  2. attacks against her Perpetual Virginity;
  3. attacks upon her Divine Maternity and the refusal to accept her as the Mother of all mankind;
  4. for those who try to publicly implant in children's hearts indifference, contempt and even hatred of this Immaculate Mother, and
  5. for those who insult her directly in her sacred images.

The Carmelites have their monthly 8:30am Mass at Assumption Grotto on First Saturdays - a time when others can take advantage of the special time (there is only a 7:30am Mass on the other Saturdays, but Fr. Perrone maintained the 8:30am on First Saturday for Carmelites to accomodate those commuting considerable distances.

Also, this is a good time to remind people about the special Passio Domini devotion held on Thursday nights at Assumption Grotto. Here again, is an opportunity to go to Mass at 7:00pm, then to spend time in front of the Blessed Sacrament exposed during a Rosary and meditations on Our Lord's passion. It runs until about 9:00pm. Please join us!

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The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!