Jesus’ Sacred Heart is on fire in passionate love of you. It’s wreathed in thorns commemorating His Passion and to show that His Passion wasn’t just a wounding of the body, but of his very heart. It’s pierced in remembrance of it being pierced on Calvary and blood and water pouring forth. It’s surmounted by a cross, again in commemoration of His Passion. And finally, it’s usually surrounded by rays of light because Jesus is the light of the world.
Devotion to the Sacred Heart grew from a devotions to the wounds of Christ, and is one of the most widely practiced devotions among Catholics. In the words of St. Margaret Mary Alacoque, the saint to whom the devotion was revealed to, “Our Lord Jesus Christ desires that we should, for sanctifying ourselves, glorify His all-loving Heart; for it was His Heart that suffered the most in His Sacred Humanity”.
Have you stopped to contemplate Jesus’ Passion? How God Himself became a human – just like us! – to teach us how to live life to the full and how to be more like himself – like God! – and then he died specifically for you, for me, for your parents and friends, so that we could join him in Heaven and so we could learn how to unite our own pain and suffering and sorrows to his Cross, allowing him to infuse our suffering with redemptive power. The mystery of Jesus’ life takes a lifetime to fully understand. But meditating on his wounds, his heart, and his precious blood, we can slowly but surely come to understand.
The Divine mercy image was given to us by Jesus himself through St. Faustina. Many times he would appear to her clothed in white, advancing toward her, with one arm raised in a blessing, and the other pointing to his heart from which two rays would shine forth – one red and one white – signifying the blood and water which poured from his heart after the spear pieced it on the Cross. He instructed Faustina to have the image painted with the words “Jesus I Trust in You” along the bottom. Jesus also had Faustina advocate for the Sunday after Easter to be the Divine Mercy Sunday and he gave her the Chaplet to Divine Mercy which can be prayed on rosary beads.
Click here to go to a sticker of the Sacred Heart of Jesus where I explain more about the devotion.
And here to learn about the Chaplet of Divine Mercy.