Friday, June 19, 2009

At Adoration

Stupidly I forgot last night that it was the eve of the Sacred Heart, and so read the wrong Vespers and Compline; oh well.  Because of my late-discovered mistake, I didn't organize myself to get to early Mass, the only Mass I could have attended to-day; but at least there was - unusually - Eucharistic Adoration at Church of the Apostles, the mother-church of Launceston, this afternoon from noon to six o'clock, and I made it along for the last 45 minutes.  It may seem tepid and lukewarm of me, but I simply knelt and read the Day Hours, Vespers, then Matins (which I'd had no time for earlier), just occasionally lifting up my eyes and heart to Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament.

I would comment to all readers the sweetly devout and loving words of St Bonaventure that comprise the last three lessons of this feast, and also the moving sketch of the growth in devotion to the Sacred Heart down the ages that is given in the middle three lessons.

It was a pity that Adoration did not end with Benediction, and a greater pity that Father saw fit to repose the blessed Sacrament wearing a stole but no alb: it appeared lazy and irreverent.

Many years ago now I was a parishioner at Sacred Heart, New Town, and there learnt what is my customary petition to the Sacred Heart, the prayer that Fr (now Bp) Jarrett had put together and had printed on the back of holy cards of the handsome statue of the Sacred Heart he'd commissioned for the church from Oberammergau, whose plinth bore the inscription "Divine Love in a Human Heart" (from the Australian poet and hymnwriter James McAuley, another former parishioner):

Sacred Heart of Jesus, burning with love for us, inflame our hearts with love for Thee.

Sacred Heart of Jesus, I give myself to Thee, through Mary.

Jesus, gentle and humble of heart, make my heart like unto Thine.

May the Sacred Heart of Jesus be ever loved, praised and adored.

Sacred Heart of Jesus, bless and protect our families.

Sacred Heart of Jesus, our peace and reconciliation, have mercy on us.

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