NIGHT PRAYER: Friday 6/11

Friday is, traditionally, a day to honor the Heart of Jesus. The First Friday of every month is a particular day to honor the Heart of Jesus. The month of June is observed as a special month to honor the Heart of Jesus and this year, the annual feast of the Sacred Heart falls today on June 11.  
So, each Friday in June, our Night Prayer will begin with a reflection on a particular image of the Heart of Jesus, followed by Wendy Wright's  Litany of the Sacred Heart. (*What's A Litany?) and ending with a song...

    Open Your Heart: sculpture by Timothy J. Schmalz

Beyond our dreaming, Lord, 
your heart swells eternally,
gathering, holding in its chambers 
every single human being, created in your image:
the peoples of all times and ages,
the tribes of every race and nation, 
past, present, yet to come...
You hold us in your heart tonight
where you've held us from before all time,
since long before our birth,
for all things come to be through you 
- without you, nothing comes to be....
In your holy heart, O Jesus,
we are brothers, sisters, all
children of one Father,
called to open our hearts as wide as you do yours,
in mercy, love and peace...
You invite us to sync our hearts with yours
in thought, word and deed,
'til all hearts beat as one, with yours
living by your Spirit's breath...
As you find room in your heart, Lord,
for every one of us,
help us make room in ours
for all we know and meet, 
for everyone, without exception, 
without a hint of reservation,
no ifs, no ands, no buts...
Let our hearts swell to welcome in:
all whose ways seem strange to us,
the stranger we've not met
and those estranged from our embrace
by selfish, foolish pride...

Protect us, Lord, within your heart,
as evening comes upon us;
watch over us while we're asleep
and hold us close and safe
that awake we might keep watch with you
and asleep, rest in your peace...
*What's A Litany?  A litany is a prayer form, addressed to the Lord or the Blessed Virgin or one of the Saints. A litany consists of a number of "titles" or attributes of the one addressed in prayer, with a recurring refrain, such as the one found in the litany above,  Heart of Jesus, hear our prayer! A litany is designed to draw our prayerful attention to the one to whom we pray or whose intercession we are seeking.
Litany of the Sacred Heart

Heart of Jesus, hear our prayer!

So loving
So humble
So gentle
So compassionate
So faithful
So wise
So patient
So steadfast
So tender
So spacious
Heart of Jesus, hear our prayer!

God’s joy
God’s shalom
Harp of the Trinity
Wingbeat of the Spirit
Breath of God
Five-petaled rose
Heart of Jesus, hear our prayer!

Womb of justice
Birthplace of peace
Our dearest hope
Longing of our lives
Heart of Jesus, hear our prayer!

Freely flowing fountain
Spring of grace
Freshet of forgiveness
Merciful river
Mystical dew
Heart of Jesus, hear our prayer!

Warmth of our hearts
Transforming fire
Cosmic furnace
Enflamer of hearts
Heart of Jesus, hear our prayer!

Heart of evolution
Beginning and ending
Center of all
Heart of Jesus, hear our prayer!

Garden of virtues
Mystical dew
Table and food
Heart of Jesus, hear our prayer!

Our refuge
Our shelter
Our comfort
Our rest
Our welcoming breast
Heart of Jesus, hear our prayer!

Wounded by love
Pierced by our cruelty
Broken by our hardness
Mystic winepress
Poured out as gift
Heart of Jesus, hear our prayer!

Have mercy, gracious heart,
Give us gratefulness
Teach us tenderness
Let us learn to love. 
Heart of Jesus, hear our prayer!

- Wendy Wright

Protect us, Lord, and keep us safe
in the depths of your holy heart:
be our strength while we're awake
and watch over us while we sleep
that awake our hearts beat one with yours
and asleep find peace til the morning dawns...

Spirit, Open My Heart
    Lyrics by Ruth Duck, arranged by Alfred Fedak

Spirit open my heart
To the joy and pain of living
As you love may I love
In receiving and in giving
Spirit, open my heart

1 God, replace my stony heart
with a heart that's kind and tender.
All my coldness and fear
to your grace I now surrender.

2 Write your love upon my heart
as my law, my goal, my story.
In each thought, word, and deed,
may my living bring you glory.


3 May I weep with those who weep,
share the joy of sister, brother.
In the welcome of Christ,
may we welcome one another.


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