20 October 2018

Consecration of the Human Race to the Sacred Heart of Jesus

Mindful, as we presbyters dutifully are, of the approach in a week's time of the Feast of Christ the King, I looked out the Form of Consecration ordered by the dear old Sacred Congregation of Rites (28 April 1926) to be made on that Day.

I discovered a curiosity. On the Internet I found an English translation one paragraph longer than the Latin form printed in the current (editio quarta 1999) Enchiridion Indulgentiarum.

That missing paragraph prays for those still involved in the darkness of Idolatry or Islamism, and concludes "Turn thine eyes of mercy towards the children of the race once called thy chosen people: of old they called down upon themselves the Blood of the Saviour; may it now descend upon them a laver of redemption and of life".

I'm not sure that the word "once" is necessary, and I do think that this form of words, to a pedantic or already prejudiced mind, might obscure the facts that it was only some  Jews in one particular place at one particular time who "called down the Blood of the Saviour" ... and by no means all the Jews of every time and place. How could it have been? Our blessed Lady, surely, did not join in that cry, and she is a Jewess, the Daughter of Sion. Similarly, it was not all the Romans, or all the soldiers, of all the times and places, who drove in the nails, but one particular infantry platoon.

Yet some such prayer seems all the more appropriate as we approach the End Times, when all Israel will be brought in (Romans 11:13 to end, especially 26). We are all impoverished if we forget the eschatological dimensions of the Apostolic Preaching. (S Paul's teaching about the Faithful Remnant is also important.)

And our Faith risks being unbalanced if we forget the importance in Divine Providence of that remarkable People.

5 comments:

Society of St. Bede said...

Link to the Manual of Prayers 1953 edition

https://archive.org/details/ManualOfPrayers1953/page/n189

Alan said...

This aroused my interest, Father! I remember the prayer being said at St Benedict's, Ardwick, after Vespers on the feast of Christ the King when Fr Lowe was rector.My recollection is that it prayed for Muslims and Jews in terms that they might consider less than respectful, and that it referred to Muhammad as "the false prophet".

The version to which you refer set some alarm bells ringing. It is clearly a recent (God addressed as "You") and American ("Savior") translation. The reference to "Islamism" sounds distinctly un-Leonine.

I have attempted to find the original text by a Google search for "consacrazione sacro cuore leone xiii" but have drawn a blank. Even a site claiming to to give Pope Leo's original text omits the paragraph in question. I presume that the late pontiff wrote the prayers as a popular devotion in Italian, rather than Latin. The site is at the URL - https://cooperatores-veritatis.org/2017/11/21/consacrazione-del-genere-umano-a-cristo-re-testo-originale-leone-xiii/

Society of St. Bede said...

A similar prayer is also found in the Raccolta No. 166 1910 ed. (Produced by Ambrose St John, Priest of the Oratory of St Philip Neri, in the Diocese of Birmingham)

Prayer to the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary for the Conversion of Jews and Turks.
100 Days, once a day. (See Instructions.) 166 Leo XIII, Br. December 18, 1899
O MOST loving and beloved Heart of JESUS, prostrate before Thee we fervently beseech Thee to extend over the Church and throughout the world those streams of living- water, which flow from Thee as from an inexhaustible fountain springing up into eternal life. O JESUS, SON of David and SON of the living GOD, have compassion upon us, the children of thy pierced Heart. O take not from us the gift of thy most holy faith, though we deserve as much for our sins and ingratitude; hide not thyself from our eyes, Thou who art the true light and our one hope; but remain with us, O LORD, while the darkness of error grows thicker, and fill us with the fire of charity, which Thou earnest on earth to bring, and desirest to be enkindled in the hearts of all men.

O JESUS, sacrificed for us upon the altar of the Cross, draw us to Thee, and with us draw the Jews and Turks, for whom also Thou hast shed thy Blood to the last drop.

May this Blood, once invoked by some in malediction, descend in benediction upon their heads and save them. May this Blood, despised and profaned by other nations, give forth for these a cry for mercy and purify them. Succour, O LORD, we implore Thee, the poor sons of Isaac and Ishmael, for whom Thou wouldst again undergo thy dolorous Passion and death. We appeal on their behalf to those most holy wounds in thy Hands and Feet and Side, which Thou dost keep ever fresh and open, as the price of the world’s redemption. To their powerful pleadings are united those which issue from the heart of thy most sweet Mother. That heart, transfixed with a sword of grief, plunged in a sea of suffering-, tormented with thine at the foot of the Cross, we offer to Thee, O JESUS, for the salvation of all those unhappy souls.

O sweet heart of Mary, do Thou speak to JESUS as we ourselves know not how to speak, and He will hear thee, so that even if a miracle be necessary to overcome the resistance of those for whom we pray, we ask it of thee, O Virgin Immaculate, by that immense love which Thou bearest to JESUS.

Only deign to appear to the Jews and Turks as Thou didst once appear to Ratisbonne, and, at a signal from thy right hand, like him they will be suddenly converted.

Oh! may the day soon come when the Holy Trinity shall reign through thee in all hearts, and all shall know, love and adore in spirit and in truth the blessed fruit of thy womb, JESUS, who, with the FATHER and the HOLY SPIRIT, liveth and reigneth world without end. Amen.

Copied from here, (I have an original copy from 1909)
http://www.saintsbooks.net/books/The%20Raccolta%20-%201910.pdf

Patrick Sheridan said...

Father, have you read Dr Schäfer's "Jesus in the Talmud"? It's a very illuminating book for people otherwise innocent of what this remarkable People think of Our Lord.

Alan said...

I'd still be fascinated to see this prayer, with the bit about Muslims/Jews included, in the original, whether Italian or Latin. "Islam" is a slight improvement on "Islamism", I suspect, in terms of faithfulness to the original, but I confess to some surprise in seeing it used as early as 1953. I would be gobsmacked if it appears in Pope Leo's original text.