♦Request and Promises of the Sacred Heart of Jesus
What are the principal requests of the Sacred Heart?
He has requested:
1. To be acknowledged as a King who rules through love: “The adorable Heart of Jesus wishes to establish His reign of love in all hearts” (St. Margaret Mary);
2. To have the image of His Heart exposed and honored in a special way in the home;
3. To have everyone consecrate Himself to His Heart;
4. To live a life of love and confidence;
5. To make reparation;
6. To make His Heart better known and loved;
7. To show greater devotion to the Holy Eucharist;
8. To celebrate the Feast of the Sacred Heart and the First Fridays.
The Promises of the Sacred Heart:
There is no greater proof of our Lord’s earnest desire that we practice devotion to His Heart than the remarkable promises He made to those who carry out His requests. When we stop to think that the one who made these promises is the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity, ‘who can neither deceive or be deceived,” we are amazed that individuals and families should hesitate to place all their trust in the Sacred Heart for the solution of each and every one of their difficulties. If Jesus promises, He intends to keep them. No one can ever accuse Him of breaking His word. One day He said to St. Margaret Mary, “Do you believe I can do this? If you believe, you will see the power of my Heart in the magnificence of my love.”
What are the promises of the Sacred Heart?
Our Lord actually made many, many promises when He revealed His Sacred Heart to St. Margaret Mary. He promised blessings to nations, to families, to religious communities and to individuals. These promises of Jesus to those who honor His Sacred Heart are generally summarized as follows:
1. I will give them all the graces necessary in their state in life.
2. I will establish peace in their homes.
3. I will comfort them in all their afflictions.
4. I will be their secure refuge during life, and above all in death.
5. 1 will bestow abundant blessings on all their undertakings.
6. Sinners shall find in my Heart a fountain and boundless ocean of mercy.
7. Tepid souls shall become fervent.
8. Fervent souls shall quickly mount to high perfection.
9. I will bless every place in which an image of my Heart shall be exposed and honored.
10. I will give priests the gift of touching the most hardened hearts.
11. Those who shall promote this devotion shall have their names written in my Heart, never to be blotted out.
12. I promise you, in the excessive mercy of my Heart, that my all-powerful love will grant to all who communicate on the first Friday of the month, for nine consecutive months, the grace of final penitence; they shall not die in my displeasure nor without the sacraments: my divine Heart shall be their safe refuge in this last moment.
Blessings to religious communities:
St. Margaret Mary tells us: “He promised that He would pour out the sweet unction of His ardent charity on all those communities in which His divine image would be honored; that He would turn away from them the thunderbolts of the just anger of God, and that He would restore them to His grace if they should have the misfortune to fall into sin.”
Fulfillment of the Promises:
Fulfillment of the promises of the Sacred Heart does not simply depend on a few external practices. The purpose of the promises is to get us to love Jesus more fervently, in return for His great love for us. If, then, we wish to see His promises realized, we must at least try to love Him sincerely and wholeheartedly.
But, if we fulfill this condition with humble trust, certainly we can rely on our Lord to keep His word and fulfill His promises. To doubt would be to suppose that Jesus didn’t mean what He said when He made the promises so that He is powerless to keep them.
It is also well to point out that promises of temporal blessings are “conditional promises.” It is quite evident the Sacred Heart does not will, nor is He able, to grant us temporal favors if they would be an obstacle to our salvation or are a hindrance to increasing our love for Him, the principal purpose of the devotion.
Nor does devotion to the Sacred Heart provide a road to sanctity and eternal happiness different from the royal road of the cross. Jesus never promised He would remove all crosses and trials, but rather that He would give us special graces to bear them. St. Margaret Mary tells us that Jesus “did not say that His friends would have nothing to suffer: for He wishes them to consider it their greatest happiness to taste the bitterness of His suffering.”