06/24/2022 – Feast of the Sacred Heart

Today is the feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. It is also normally the feast of the Birth of St John the Baptist.

This convergence is Providential and gives us much to meditate on when we pray the Second Joyful Mystery the Visitation.

Picture the scene, Mary carrying the newly conceived Jesus nestled beneath her Immaculate Heart leaves Nazareth and hurries to the house of her cousin Elizabeth who Mary has learned from the Angel Gabriel is with child and is in her Sixth Month.Nazareth, and Ein Karem, where Elizabeth and Zachary lived, are 80 miles apart, as the bird flies, but much longer on the dusty, rocky, often uphill “roads” of the time.

It was a dangerous trip, Joseph would surely have accompanied Mary, but even then they would have to have travelled in a caravan of people. Waiting for a caravan and then travelling at that pace would have made the trip take longer.

Within days of conception, the child’s embryonic cells start to organise. Soon a definite pattern begins to develop. Some cluster of cells progenitors of the fetal brain seem to direct others, others begin to form the heart. By four weeks the fetal heart begins to beat.

When the unborn babies Jesus and John met, through the meeting of their mothers, there was surely a meeting of the then tiny new Sacred Heart of Jesus with the innocent and receptive older heart of His cousin John. This Cor ad cor loquitur is a model for us. Jesus offers the burning love of His Sacred Heart to us, and hopefully like the future Baptist, we leap for joy.