While I missed confessions at St Joachim's, I did spend an hour in the church in Highgate praying the Office, and later on made my confession during the First Friday Holy Hour at the Pro., before hearing Mass of St Sabbas, Abbot. Fr Rowe kindly remembered all those who read this blog at the memento vivorum in the Canon. You were prayed for!
I was reminded in confession that among the promises of Our Lord is that of obtaining the grace of final perseverance through devotion to His Sacred Heart; and was given the penance of saying twelve times, Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us. I must say I found these words, as I focussed on them while praying them, very rich in meaning, and I slowed down so much, it seemed I couldn't get over them...
At Benediction's end, we sang that seemingly rather saccharine but actually quite sensible hymn, "Sweet Heart of Jesus", which asks for what things alone are necessary - love of God, detachment from the world, and longing for heaven; I found myself singing it in the car afterward, at first overdoing its melodrama, but later with real conviction that its sentiments are right:
Sweet Heart of Jesus, Fount of love and mercy,To-day we come Thy blessings to implore:O touch our hearts, so cold and so ungrateful,And make them, Lord, Thine own for evermore.Sweet Heart of Jesus! We imploreO make us love Thee more and more.Sweet Heart of Jesus! Make us know and love Thee,Unfold to us the treasures of Thy grace,That so our hearts, from things of earth uplifted,May long alone to gaze upon Thy Face.Sweet Heart of Jesus! We imploreO make us love Thee more and more.