The Deacon's Bench

The Deacon's Bench


“Heart speaks to heart”

posted by Deacon Greg Kandra

For this feast of the Sacred Heart, you should check out this stirring homily, delivered the other night by James Douglas Conley, new auxiliary for Denver, whose episcopal ordination takes place this day. A grateful h/t to the always-alert Rocco for this gem:

I have chosen for my episcopal motto “Cor ad cor loquitur” (heart speaks to heart). This isn’t an original quotation. I stole it from my mentor, the Venerable John Henry Cardinal Newman, the great 19th century English convert to the Catholic faith. My first encounter with Newman was during my sophomore year in college when I had to write an essay on an English prose writer, and I chose Newman. It wasn’t even a religious essay. My mom typed the paper for me. I’m not sure she remembers that. But it began for me a life-long love affair with Newman that continues to this day. In fact, tomorrow, May 30, will mark the 161st anniversary of Newman’s ordination to the priesthood which took place in Rome on May 30, 1847. For me, this is another sign of Newman’s influence in my life.

But that line, “heart speaks to heart”, was not even original to Newman. He borrowed it for his motto when he was named a cardinal in 1879, from a letter written by the great 17th century spiritual writer and Bishop of Geneva, Saint Francis de Sales.

These words “heart speaks to heart” can first be understood as the Sacred Heart of Jesus, the Heart of God, speaking to our heart, calling us to holiness, leading and guiding us to the Father.

But “heart speaks to heart” can also describe a type of pastoral charity where an individual leads another individual to God, through love and kindness. One heart at a time, person to person, heart to heart.

Newman believed that, next to the power of supernatural grace, the greatest influence over the human soul is the example of goodness in another person.

We might think of the people in our own lives who have shaped us the most. Perhaps our parents, a teacher, a priest, a good friend, someone we wanted to emulate. This happens every day. It is through friendship that we are moved to rise above our own weakness, our own vanity and pride, to embrace holiness and virtue, to strive for goodness, truth and beauty. I think we have all experienced this in our lives.

And ultimately, it is the example of love and virtue in Jesus, the friendship of the soul with Christ, that draws us to want to lay down our lives for our beloved, to do great things, to love in a heroic way.

Check out the link for more. It’s terrific stuff.



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Stone of Bethel

posted June 2, 2008 at 10:54 am


Litany of the Sacred Heart of JesusV. Lord, have mercy on us.R. Christ, have mercy on us.V. Lord, have mercy on us. Christ, hear us.R. Christ, graciously hear us.V. God the Father of Heaven, have mercy on us.God the Son, Redeemer of the world, have mercy on us.God the Holy Spirit, have mercy on us.Holy Trinity, one God, have mercy on us.Heart of Jesus, Son of the Eternal Father, have mercy on us.Heart of Jesus, formed by the Holy Spirit in the Virgin Mother’s womb.Heart of Jesus, substantially united to the Word of God.Heart of Jesus, of infinite majesty.Heart of Jesus, holy temple of God.Heart of Jesus, tabernacle of the Most High.Heart of Jesus, house of God and gate of heaven.Heart of Jesus, glowing furnace of charity.Heart of Jesus, vessel of justice and love.Heart of Jesus, full of goodness and love.Heart of Jesus, abyss of all virtues.Heart of Jesus, most worthy of all praise.Heart of Jesus, King and center of all hearts.Heart of Jesus, in whom are all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.Heart of Jesus, in whom dwells all the fullness of the Godhead.Heart of Jesus, in whom the Father was well pleased.Heart of Jesus, of whose fullness we have all received.Heart of Jesus, desire of the everlasting hills.Heart of Jesus, patient and rich in mercy.Heart of Jesus, rich to all who call upon You.Heart of Jesus, fount of life and holiness.Heart of Jesus, propitiation for our offenses.Heart of Jesus, overwhelmed with reproaches.Heart of Jesus, bruised for our iniquities.Heart of Jesus, obedient even unto death.Heart of Jesus, pierced with a lance.Heart of Jesus, source of all consolation.Heart of Jesus, our life and resurrection.Heart of Jesus, our peace and reconciliation.Heart of Jesus, victim for our sins.Heart of Jesus, salvation of those who hope in You.Heart of Jesus, hope of those who die in You.Heart of Jesus, delight of all saints.V. Lamb of God, who takest away the sins of the world,R. spare us, O Lord.V. Lamb of God, who takest away the sins of the world,R. graciously hear us, O Lord.V. Lamb of God, who takest away the sins of the world,R. have mercy on us.V. Jesus, meek and humble of Heart,R. Make our hearts like unto Thine.Let us pray.Almighty and eternal God, look upon the Heart of Thy most beloved Son and upon the praises and satisfaction which He offers Thee in the name of sinners; and to those who implore Thy mercy, in Thy great goodness, grant forgiveness in the name of the same Jesus Christ, Thy Son, who livest and reignest with Thee forever and ever. Amen.



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