I stood there motionless, head arched upward trying to understand the Pillar of the Sacred Heart at the entrance of Stuart Country Day School of the Sacred Heart in Princeton NJ. I came in 1977 to be the fourth headmistress of the school following such extraordinary women as Sisters Joan Kirby, Mary Bush and Judy Garson. And at the age of 33, I needed all the spiritual strength I could find.
In prayer we come to Him with everything that touches our life,
with the sufferings and hopes of humanity.
As apostolic contemplatives, Religious of the Sacred Heart root our lives in prayer. With a mission to discover and reveal the love of God, our spirituality and our mission are based in love. Our contemplative outlook is part of who we are, whether in prayer, in ministry or in our daily lives.
"The contemplative outlook on the world has been a call to be authentic apostles of Christ's love, to help bring to birth a more welcoming world, to make known a God who is great, bountiful and tender. It is a call to educate in such a way that God's plan, God's glory, may become a reality, so that all may grow as brothers and sisters in the inward freedom of the children of God, and have fullness of life." (Superior General Concepcion Camacho, RSCJ)
The pierced Heart of Jesus opens our being to the depths of God and to the anguish of humankind.
On these pages, we will share prayers, poems, reflections and artwork that reflect the spirituality of the Society of the Sacred Heart. We hope you will return here periodically for resources appropriate to the liturgical season and our Sacred Heart traditions.
This powerful image – Listening to the Heartbeat of God – speaks to me of the line: “Each morning you wake me to hear, to listen like a disciple” (Isaiah 50:4). Serving poor elderly in New Orleans as a pastoral care coordinator for Christopher Homes, Inc., I am given many opportunities to listen to God’s heartbeat.
Whenever I visit a particular Central American couple, the husband loves to read from Scripture. We end with prayer. The wife’s eyes always fill with tears when she calls upon Jesus. They are filled with joy even though their situation is precarious.
This bronze statue of Christ and the child is located in a narrow courtyard on the campus of Saint Louis University, not far from the United States-Canada Provincial House. The sculptor, James Michael Maher, wrote about it:
I wanted a piece that would embody the idea of the Sacred Heart and convey the essence of the mission to bring Christ’s love and compassion to all. I think it has a lot to do with seeing the parent/child relationship from both sides, and relating that to being a child of God.
By Anne Montgomery, RSCJ (RIP)
In this Kairos time of crisis and challenge, may we, like Mary of Nazareth, be open to the Spirit who calls us to new ways of incarnating the Word of truth and love.
In the face of harsh judgment even by those closest, may we, too, ponder deep in our
hearts a response inspired by the nonviolent Christ who went beyond
traditional teachings to grow to maturity in wisdom and grace.
Anna Mae Marheineke, RSCJ, was a talented and much-loved educator, who touched countless lives in her long ministry of education. She was also a talented poet. A collection of her poetry was published by the alumni association of the Academy of the Sacred Heart, St. Charles. Below are two of the poems included in the booklet, both dedicated to the students she loved so much and so well.
We are women whose spirituality acknowledges
the ever-present glory of God, who is love.