Consecration to the Sacred Heart of Jesus
[Composed by St. Margaret Mary]

June 21st, 1992
Brother John Raymond

	Margaret Alacoque was born on July 22nd, 1647 in the diocese of
 Autun, France. At Confirmation she took the name Mary. She was
 raised in a good Catholic home. Life continued rather pleasantly for
 Margaret until the death of her father in 1655.
	Her father's death left the family in a difficult situation. It
 was discovered that their house was jointly owned by her father's
 brother who took over the management of the entire property and
 treated Margaret's mother practically as a servant. Margaret was
 sent as a boarder to the school of the Urbanist Poor Clares of
	Margaret was allowed to make her First Holy Communion at the age
 of nine, which was then considered rather young. Holy Communion had
 a profound effect upon her. She began to feel drawn to prayer and
 away from the amusements of her school companions. Also, she was
 eager to do everything the nuns did and had an ardent desire to
 become a nun.
	At eleven she suffered a severe attack of rheumatism which
 obliged her to return home. After being bedridden for four years,
 she was miraculously cured when she promised the Blessed Virgin that
 if she were cured she would one day become one of Her daughters.
 Thus in 1662 Margaret was completely restored to health.
	Margaret Mary entered the Visitation Nuns on June 20, 1671 at the
 age of twenty-four. She was assigned as a nurse's aide in the
 convent infirmary. She endured many trials and sufferings. On
 December 27, 1673 as she knelt before the Most Blessed Sacrament
 Jesus appeared to Sr. Margaret Mary and gave her the title "the
 Beloved Disciple of My Sacred Heart."
	Two months later she had a vision of the Sacred Heart of Jesus
 which was on a throne of flames and surrounded by a crown of thorns
 and surmounted by a Cross. Jesus taught her that the thorns
 represented the punctures made in His Heart by our sins. The Cross
 signified that His Heart, from the first moment of Its existence,
 was filled with all the future sorrows which He would endure. He
 wished this Image of His Sacred Heart to be honored by the faithful
 by wearing It (ie. a Sacred Heart Badge) and publicly displaying It.
 He promised many graces and blessings to those who would do this.
	In June, 1674, Jesus further revealed His Heart. He complained of
 all He had done for mankind and the ingratitude and rejection shown
 Him in return. Our Blessed Lord asked Sr. Margaret Mary to make a
 Holy Hour between eleven o'clock and midnight every first Thursday
 of the month to make reparation for the terrible anguish He felt in
 the Garden of Olives due to this foreseen response of humanity.
 Also, He asked her to receive Holy Communion on the First Friday of
 every month. (This is now known as the devotion of the Nine First
 Fridays. Our Lord promised the grace of final perseverance to
 whoever receives Holy Communion on nine consecutive First Fridays in
 reparation to His Sacred Heart).
	The fourth major apparition occurred shortly after the Feast of
 Corpus Christi, 1675. Our Lord specifically complained of the
 irreverences, sacrileges, coldness and scorn He receives from men in
 the Holy Eucharist. He asked for the institution by the Church of
 the Feast of the Sacred Heart to atone for this great ingratitude.
 He asked that the faithful make Holy Communions of reparation on
 this Feast.
	When Sr. Margaret Mary became director of the Novices she
 instructed them in devotion to the Sacred Heart. This brought her
 much criticism from her community as they incorrectly considered
 this devotion new and opposed to the spirit of their Order. She
 suffered many humiliations and opposition until 1682. During this
 year her spiritual director, Fr. Claude de la Colombiere, died
 leaving his writings called "The Spiritual Retreat" which was soon
 published. One day the nuns read it during meals. Fr. Claude
 described Sr. Margaret Mary without revealing her name and talked
 about the revelations made by Jesus to her. After her public
 justification by Fr. Colombiere (now a saint) all opposition
	St. Margaret Mary's earthly mission for the Sacred Heart was
 nearing completion. On October 8th, 1690 St. Margaret Mary was
 confined to bed. Doctors examined her but found no symptoms to cause
 alarm. Yet, on October 17th, Margaret Mary asked for the Last
 Sacraments. She died later on that day.
	In 1765 Pope Clement XIII introduced the Feast of the Sacred
 Heart at Rome. Finally, in 1856, Pope Pius IX extended the Feast to
 the entire Church. (Celebrated June 26th this year)

Consecration to the Sacred Heart of Jesus [Composed by St. Margaret

	"O Sacred Heart of my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, to You I
 consecrate and offer up my person and my life, my actions, trials
 and sufferings, that my entire being may from now on only be
 employed in loving, honoring and glorifying You. This is my
 irrevocable will, to belong entirely to You, and to do all for Your
 love, renouncing with my whole heart all that can displease You.
	"I take You, O Sacred Heart, for the sole object of my love, the
 protection of my life, the pledge of my salvation, the remedy of my
 frailty and inconstancy, the reparation for all the defects of my
 life, and my secure refuge at the hour of my death. Be, O Most
 Merciful Heart, my justification before God Your Father, and screen
 me from His anger which I have so justly merited. I fear all from my
 own weakness and malice, and placing my entire confidence in You, O
 Heart of Love, I hope all from Your infinite goodness. Annihilate in
 me all that can displease or resist You. Imprint Your pure love so
 deeply in my heart that I may never forget You or be separated from
 You. I ask You in Your infinite goodness to grant that my name be
 engraved in Your Heart, for in this I place all my happiness and all
 my glory, to live and to die as one of Your devoted servants. Amen."