First Friday Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus

 
 

In celebrating the Sacred Heart of Jesus we recall how Christ had a heart. God himself in his compassion and love for us took to himself a human nature with a very real human heart. True God and true man Jesus showed us the fullness of compassion. In his most Sacred Heart he loved us as a man who loved us as God. This human heart, the true tabernacle of the Most High, was pierced on the cross. From his Sacred Heart blood and water flowed out. That blood and water are signs to us of the sacraments of Baptism and the Most Holy Eucharist. As his human heart pumped his precious blood to all the members of his body in his life, so through these Sacraments and in many other ways he tenderly unites the Church as members of his body into his own Divine Life.

While the Heart of Jesus has been honored in many ways throughout the centuries, Christ has communicated the importance of this devotion over and over again through the saints. While Our Lord revealed some of the tender love of His Sacred Heart to St. Gertrude the Great in the 1200's, the full flowering of the devotion began when Our Lord appeared to St. Margaret Mary Alacoque in France in 1673. During these apparitions He explained to her the devotion to His Sacred Heart as He wanted people to practice it. Jesus asked for acts of reparation, frequent reception of the Sacraments, and time of quiet prayer.

Of particular importance in honoring the Sacred Heart of Jesus is the first Friday of each month. Jesus promised through St. Marget Mary that anyone who makes a novena of receiving Holy Communion on  9 consecutive First Friday Masses will receive special blessings at the time of their death.


The Twelve Promises of the Sacred Heart to His faithful are:

  1. I will give them all of the graces necessary for their state of life.
  2. I will establish peace in their homes.
  3. I will comfort them in all their afflictions.
  4. I will be their strength during life and above all during death.
  5. I will bestow a large blessing upon all their undertakings.
  6. Sinners shall find in My Heart the source and the infinite ocean of mercy.
  7. Tepid souls shall grow fervent.
  8. Fervent souls shall quickly mount to high perfection.
  9. I will bless every place where a picture of my heart shall be set up and honored.
  10. I wilt give to priests the gift of touching the most hardened hearts.
  11. Those who shall promote this devotion shall have their names written in My Heart, never to be blotted out.
  12. I promise you in the excessive mercy of My Heart that My all-powerful love will grant all to those who communicate on the First Friday in nine consecutive months the grace of final penitence; they shall not die in My disgrace nor without receiving their sacraments; My Divine Heart shall be their safe refuge in this last moment.
 
 

Prayer of Reparation to the Sacred Heart of Jesus

Adorable Heart of Jesus, glowing with love for us and inflamed with zeal for our salvation. O Heart that understands the misery to which our sins have brought us, infinitely rich in mercy to heal the wounds of our souls, behold me humbly kneeling before You to express the sorrow that fills my heart for the coldness and indifference with which I have so long returned the numberless benefits which You have bestowed upon me.

With a deep sense of the outrages that have been heaped upon You by my sins and the sins of others, I wish to make reparation to Your most Sacred Majesty. It was our sins that filled Your Heart with bitterness; it was the weight of our guilt that pressed down Your face to the earth in the Garden of Olives and caused you to die in agony on the Cross. But now, repentant and sorrowful, I implore Your forgiveness.

Adorable Heart of Jesus, Source of true consolation and ever merciful to the penitent sinner, impart to our hearts the spirit of penance that we may be sincerely sorry for our sins. Pardon them, O Lord, in Your mercy, and let all who have sinned against You in the Sacrament of Your love be converted and return to You. Deliver us from our sins. And in order to repair the sins of ingratitude by which we have grieved Your most tender and loving Heart, may we love and honor You in the most adorable Sacrament of the Altar, where You are present to hear and grant our petitions and to be the food and life of our souls.

 

Merciful Jesus, be our Mediator with Your heavenly Father, whom we have so grievously offended. Help us to amend our ways. As Your Sacred Heart is our refuge and our hope when we have sinned, so let it be the strength and support of our repentance, and nothing in life or death shall ever separate us from You. Amen.

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