Father Jules Chevalier, the founder of the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart, believed firmly that not he but Mary was the true founder of his Congregation. He based this belief on his experiences. When he first conceived the idea of establishing a house of missionaries in Issoudun, central France, he had no step-by step plan of how to go about it. He needed financial means, he needed the approval of his bishop, he needed companions. He firmly believed that his prayers to Mary provided him with all he needed and made it clear beyond doubt that his idea of founding a house of missionaries had heavenly backing. In return he promised Mary that in his society she would be honoured in a special way. After a few years of searching how to keep this promise he finally came up with a name of honour for Mary: she is “Our Lady of the Sacred Heart.”
The title expresses the strong bond that exists between Mary and her child. The way to the heart of Christ runs via his mother. She knows him better than anybody else. She brought him into this world and she understands the desire of his heart to be with people and to call them to let God’s love reign in their hearts.
In the Gospel according to Luke (1:45) Elizabeth praises Mary because of her faith: “Blessed are you who believed that the Lord’s word would come true!” Mary believed that with God nothing is impossible.
The way Mary opens the heart of her Son to us is through her faith in him, a faith that lasted all of his life; from the very beginning of his birth in the stable, until the bitter end of his death on the cross. It was a life freely given away, spent generously for all, with no-one excluded, so that we may recognise the love of God and let it sink into our hearts. That is what Jesus stood for, that is what Mary believed in with all her heart. And one day this will happen, for God will not be deterred from bringing about his reign, and with Him nothing is impossible.
MSC Prayer to Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Remember, Our Lady of the Sacred Heart, The great things the Lord has done for you, He chose you for his mother, He wanted you close to his cross, He gives you a share in His glory, He listens to your prayer. Offer Him our prayers and praise and thanksgiving, Present our petitions to Him. Let us live like you in the love of your Son So that His kingdom may come. Lead all to the source of living water that flows from His heart, Spreading over the world hope and salvation, justice and peace. See our trust in you; answer our prayer. Show yourself always our mother. Amen.