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You are here:Home / Family News / NEF 2016 / Family News - June 14th, 2016 / A word from the Superior General
Jun 14, 2016

A word from the Superior General

The Heart of Jesus

Etienne Parrocel, Jésus et la Samaritaine

By His incarnation, the Son of God worked with human hands, He thought with a human mind, acted by human choice and loved with a human heart. Born of the Virgin Mary, He has truly been made one of us, like us in all things except sin.” (GS 22)

The Heart of Jesus is the Heart of the Word Incarnate. It is the mystery of Christ seen under the angle of the generous urge of the Heart of Jesus, the Word Incarnate as he offers himself to the Father to do his will for the salvation of souls (cf. RoL articles 2, 4, 9). When the Bible speaks of the heart, it is nearly always talking about the interiority of the individual (1 P.3:3.4), to the inner person. Then, the heart is the original interior of the individual (Prov.27, 19). “Just as water reflects the face, so one human heart reflects another”. The roots of our feelings are to be found in the heart, but also our convictions and the reasons for our words, actions and decisions. And so it is with the Heart of Jesus, the Word Incarnate. Article 2563 of the Catechism of the Catholic Church says: “The heart is the dwelling-place where I am, where I live; according to the Semitic or Biblical expression, the heart is the place “to which I withdraw.” The heart is our hidden center, beyond the grasp of our reason and of others; only the Spirit of God can fathom the human heart and know it fully. The heart is the place of decision, deeper than our psychic drives. It is the place of truth, where we choose life or death. It is the place of encounter, because as image of God we live in relation: it is the place of covenant.

Jesus reaches his decisions in his heart. It is in the Heart of Jesus that the offering of the Word Incarnate “Here I Am” becomes a reality: the surprising decision to remain in Jerusalem to look after his Father’s business, the decision to go elsewhere when everyone was looking for Him in Peter’s house; the decision to retire to the mountain when the crowd wanted to proclaim him King; the desire to return to Judea on receiving the news of the death of Lazarus although earlier on there were death threats.

The Heart of Jesus is the source of truth. From this heart come radical calls exciting the hearts of those who are listening. He who loses his life finds it; he who keeps it loses it! If the grain of wheat which falls to the earth does not die it remains alone; but if it dies it produces a multitude of fruits. He who wants to be my disciple must renounce himself, take up his cross and follow me. Let him who wishes to be the first be the servant of all! He who humbles himself shall be exalted and he who exalts himself shall be humbled. Father, if it is possible let this chalice be removed, yet not my will but Yours be done. It is for this that I have come into the world to bear witness to the truth.

It is with his Heart that Jesus meets people. “We ought to practice the art of listening which is much more than simply hearing. First of all in communicating with another person there is the ability of the heart to show nearness without which there is no real spiritual meeting. Such a gift helps us to find the right words and actions thanks to which we cease to be simple spectators.” (EG 171) Jesus meets his Father in the early morning silence of contemplation or at other moments of the day. But he also meets his Father in his missionary activities conforming Himself to his Father’s will. Overwhelmed before the tomb of his friend Lazarus, Jesus exclaimed: “Father, I thank you, because you have listened to me; I know that you always listen to me; but I am saying this so that the people around may believe that it is you who have sent me” (John 11,41-42). His state of beloved Son sent by the Father is well rooted in his heart; His passion is to do the will of his Father by performing the works which he has been ordered to do; to reveal to the men and women of our time the tenderness and mercy, the face of love of God the Father (RoL. Art 9), so that each one may recover his dignity of son and brother.

Jesus meets the men and women in a heart to heart: the openness, sensitivity and attention of Jesus in his meetings with the people, have their origin in his Heart which is both meek and humble and because he always looks with the eyes of the heart (Angelus 19-07-2015). This is the look with which he meets Zacheus in his sycamore tree. By Jacob’s well he awakens the longing for God in the heart of the Samaritan woman. He meets Peter on his fishing boat who, trusting the words of Jesus, has discovered a whole new world of things possible. This is how he loved the rich young man to the extent that he even suggested the Evangelical demands. He is deeply moved when he sees his Father taking an interest in the least, in the leper, in the widow of Naim mourning her only son, in the crowds like sheep without a shepherd, acting on their behalf so as to put all these situations to rights. With courage he stands up for the woman taken in adultery, forgives her and asks her to sin no more. In his dying moments and just as the soldier’s lance pierces his side, we can lean towards his heart and see to what extent he loves us and see too that within there is nothing left because he has given all. He has only a few drops of blood and water left which he also gives. This is how the sacraments of Baptism and the Eucharist were instituted to prolong his gift so that we too may remain in his love, compassion, solace, forgiveness and salvation.

Gaspar Fernández Pérez scj
Superior General

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