NIGHT PRAYER: Thursday 6/23

Friday is a traditional day to honor the Heart of Jesus and this Friday is the annual Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.  The image below is found in  the Apse of Visitation Chapel in Paray-le-Monial in France where Jesus appeared to Saint Margaret Mary Alacoque in the 17th century, inviting her to spread devotion to his Sacred Heart. Our prayer tonight reflects on this painting...

We might mistake your arms
for the wood of your Cross, Lord,
but there's no mistaking that we meet you here:
     risen, radiant, shining bright,
     alive in all your glory...

Your face looks down upon us 
with purest pity in your eyes:
    you long to lift us up, to embrace us 
    in your outstretched healing, saving arms...

Risen?  Yes!  
And yet your blood runs red, fresh from your side,
your holy heart aglow
not with fire and flame
but the sun's white hot heat, 
burning but never consuming
those who seek and find and know its warmth... 

You're the source and center of life, Lord,
    light for the whole of creation.
Without the warmth of your sacred heart
    our world in cold oblivion would perish
    - and we along with it...
But we're saved, redeemed and healed,
    warmed by the fire of your holy heart
    burning, aflame with love for us 
and reaching out in embrace
    from the arms of your holy Cross...
Heart of Jesus, be our light:
    be the heart that beats within our hearts,
    the heat that saves us from the cold,
    the mercy for which all souls thirst,
    the love that holds and keeps us warm,
    safe in your arms, 
    pressed to your pulsing heart,
    beating as one with ours...
Protect us, Lord, while we're awake
and watch over us while we sleep
that awake, we might keep watch with you
and asleep, rest in your peace...

Christ, Be Our Light by Bernadette Farrell
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