In this month traditionally dedicated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, I warmly encourage all parishioners to consecrate themselves, their families, etc., to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. I will offer a series of “consecration” formulae you can use or choose from. The Sacred Heart of Jesus sums up in one image all of the supremely loving things which combine the divine and the human love of Jesus the Son of God for us poor human beings: divine mercy, love, tenderness, compassion, understanding. Devotion to the Sacred Heart inspires trust, confidence, hope and joy. No matter how broken, low, unworthy, alone, desperate, afraid, guilty or plain old rotten someone may feel, the very thought of the Sacred Heart of Jesus opens a door, brings light, lifts the spirit and heralds a return to peace and joy. Open your heart to Him and experience the power of his eternal love for you! – Fr. Peter
The personal “Act of Consecration to the Sacred Heart of Jesus” below was composed by St. Margaret Mary Alacoque, a 17th Century French nun and mystic who saw our Lord in numerous visions. She was instrumental in spreading devotion to His Sacred Heart after He conveyed His wish for her to do so.
In one vision she actually saw Jesus’ Sacred Heart with flames protruding from it to show His great love for us! The burning love he showed her from His Sacred Heart certainly must have inspired her.
I (N.), give and consecrate to the Sacred Heart of our Lord Jesus Christ, my person, my life, my actions, my pains and sufferings, so that I may be unwilling to make use of any part of my being save to honor, love, and glorify the Sacred Heart. It is my unchanging intention to be all His and to do all for love of Him. I renounce at the same time with all my heart whatever can displease Him.
I, therefore, take You, O Sacred Heart, for the only object of my love, the protector of my life, the pledge of my salvation, the remedy of my weakness and inconstancy, the atonement for the faults of my life, and the secure refuge at the hour of my death.
Be then, O Heart of goodness, my justification before God the Father, and turn away from me the punishment of His just anger. O Heart of love, I put my confidence in You, because I fear everything from my own sinfulness and weakness. I hope for all things from Your mercy and generosity.
Destroy in me all that can displease or resist Your holy Will. Let Your pure love impress You so deeply upon my heart that I may never forget You or be separated from You. May my name, by your loving kindness, be written In You, because in You I desire to place all my happiness and all my glory in living and dying in very bondage to you.
It is important to note that this “bondage” St. Margaret Mary refers to in this act of consecration is one of love for God! Speaking also of another kind of bondage, St. Paul wrote in his letter to the Romans of how we who were once slaves to sinful behavior could now be servants of righteousness instead through Christ, and attain Eternal life with Him (Rom 6:22-23).
Note also the importance St. Margaret Mary places in that righteousness as coming from God, not solely from her own efforts when she says “I fear everything from my own sinfulness and weakness. I hope for all things from Your mercy and generosity.”
As our Lord said in the Gospels “I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, bears much fruit. For without me, you can do nothing” (John 15:5).
Jesus once told St. Margaret Mary something quite similar when He said “Without me you can do nothing, but I will never let you lack help as long as you keep your weakness and nothingness buried in My strength.”
Our Lord wishes us to approach Him for help and love in humility, even when we’re feeling most uncertain or useless. Don’t be afraid to offer up your own weaknesses and anxieties to Him! He’ll be more than happy to fill your “nothingness” with His awesomeness!