Tuesday, July 23, 2024

Bishop Senior Consecrates Entire Diocese to Sacred Heart of Jesus, That All Would Come to Know His Love and Mercy

On the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, June 7, Bishop Timothy Senior consecrated the Diocese of Harrisburg to the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus during the celebration of Mass at St. Patrick Cathedral.

The Act of Consecration and the solemn Mass were part of the Diocese’s 8 Days of Eucharistic Joy, a local celebration in conjunction with the National Eucharistic Revival.

“In the love and mercy that flows from the Sacred Heart of Jesus, we find the pathway to everlasting life, to the healing deep within us that only Jesus can give,” Bishop Senior said during the Mass, which was livestreamed on the Diocese’s YouTube channel.

The noon Mass was concelebrated by a number of priests, including those celebrating the anniversary of their ordination, as well as members of the Congregation of the Missionaries of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary who serve in the Diocese.

“As we consecrate the Diocese of Harrisburg to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, this gesture comes with a prayer, a desire, a vision that everyone within the 15 counties of the Diocese – people of all faiths – would come to know the love and mercy that flows from the Sacred Heart of Jesus,” Bishop Senior said in his homily.

“That’s certainly an aspirational goal, but it’s one that we Christians hold fast to, because every person created in the image and likeness of God has infinite dignity,” he said.

Bishop Senior remarked that the love and mercy of Jesus touch our hearts in such a way that we are conformed to His likeness, allowing us to become channels of that love and mercy to others.

Even as we share that love and mercy, we must also be touched by those gifts in our own lives, he said.

“Where do we need to be drawn into the Heart of Jesus? He wants to hear from us where we are wounded. What do we carry with us? Where is our brokenness surfacing? Where are we encountering the darkness that only He can dispel with the light of His love?” the bishop asked.

“When we are transformed in that way and have a glimpse of the healing love of God, we become filled with that love. It changes us, and we truly can be beacons of His love, carriers of His grace, to spread to every person we encounter,” he said.

The consecration took place after the Universal Prayer, as the bishop made his way to a Carrera marble statue of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in front of the Marian Shrine. There, he consecrated the Diocese and all the people in it – clergy, lay faithful, first responders, healthcare workers, those in hospitals and prisons, and the homebound, homeless and abandoned – the to Sacred Heart of Jesus.

Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus is founded in the visions of St. Margaret Mary Alacoque, a religious Sister in France to whom Jesus appeared beginning in 1673 and revealed His Sacred Heart and ways to venerate it. In 1856, Pope Pius IX established the Feast of the Sacred Heart for the whole Church.

(Photos by Jen Reed, The Catholic Witness.)

By Jen Reed, The Catholic Witness

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