Friday, June 1, 2012


The National Shrine of the Sacred Heart in San Antonio Village, Makati City will be the center of numerous festivities for the Solemn Feast of the Sacred Heart which falls this year on June 15, 2012. 

Theme of the celebration will center on: The Promises of the Sacred Heart. His Excellency Luis Antonio Tagle, D.D. Archbishop of Manila and His Eminence Gaudencio Cardinal Rosales will be the main celebrants for the festivities. 

Bishop Tagle will preside over the Eucharistic celebration officially launching the Nine Day Novena-Masses in honor of the Sacred Heart on Tuesday, June 5, 2012 at 6:00 PM while His Eminence Gaudencio Cardinal Rosales, will preside over the Feast Day Mass on Friday, June 15, 2012 also at 6:00 PM.

From June 6 to June 14, 2012, various guest Church dignitaries will celebrate the traditional Nine-Day Novena Masses with the following schedules:

For 12:00 NN Masses, Rev. Msgr Emmanuel Sunga, June 6; 
Bishop  Francis de Leon, D.D. - Thursday, June 7; 
Rev Fr. Catalino Arevalo, S.J. - Friday, June 8;
Bishop Teodoro   Bacani,D.D.  - Saturday, June 9;  
Rev. Fr. Manuel Flores, S.J. will preside on Monday, June 11;
Rev. Fr. Francis Gustilo, SDB - Tuesday, June  12;   
Rev. Fr. Genaro Diwa, - Wednesday, June 13; 
Bishop  Gabriel Reyes, D.D. - Thursday, June 14 at 12:00 NN;
and Bishop Broderick Pabillo, D.D. - Thursday, at 6:00 PM.

The Sacred Heart Feast Day Mass celebrants will be Bishop Bernardino Cortez, D.D. at 12:15NN while His Eminence Gaudencio Cardinal Rosales officiates at the 6:00 PM Mass.   

This year's theme will expound on the Twelve Promises of the Sacred Heart to those having a deep devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus as communicated by Christ to St. Margaret Mary Alacoque in private revelations in 1673. 

It promises numerous benefits and much graces to all; necessary for their state of life; lay people, priests, families, sinners, the sick and the dying.  

The traditional Nine-Day Novena Masses to prepare for the solemn feast day starts on June 5 to June 14, 2012. Two Masses  at 12:15 NN and 6:00 PM will be held daily, at the National Shrine of the Sacred Heart in Makati City.

Bishop Ted Bacani will host the annual recollection talk on the Sacred Heart at 10:00 AM on June 9, 2012 while the traditional Procession of the Sacred Heart will be held Thursday, June 14 after the 6:00 PM Mass. 

All over the country, many parishes this June, solemnly observes and dedicate to His Sacred Heart in the Church calendar; celebrate this centuries-old great Feast of the Sacred Heart whose Heart beckons to everyone to “Come to Me all you who labor and are burdened and I will refresh you” (Matt 11.28). 

The roots of the devotion to the Sacred Heart start from the early Christians who venerated the wounds of Jesus Christ. The devotion as practiced today was founded by St. Margaret Mary Alacoque, a French Visitandine nun at Paray-le-monial, France to whom Jesus initially appeared in the 17th century complaining of the ingratitude and irreverence of man and to whom He gave the mission to spread the devotion.

The practice of the devotion consists of the First Friday  Vigil and  Communion of reparation,  practice of the Holy Hour and Visits to the Blessed Sacrament, and the observance of this Feast of the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart, Friday after Corpus Christi – (Feast dedicated to the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ,) all leading to one's ultimate C-onversion, O-ffering and R-eparation.

The seeds of Faith and the devotion was initially brought to the Philippines by the Society of Jesus to whom Pope Pius IX had entrusted the devotion. (At the Ateneo de Manila, by the way, is a wooden carving of the statue of the Sacred Heart done by our National Hero Jose Rizal).

The devotion was introduced here in our Shrine likewise by two Jesuit priests: Fr. Pedro Verceles, S.J. and Fr. Lorenzo Guerrero, S.J. and nurtured by all of the succeeding Rectors of the Shrine; Msgr. Nico Bautista, (1976-1981) Fr. Max Ocampo (1981- 1999), Bishop Tom Yalung, D.D. (1999- 2001), Msgr Jose Clemente Ignacio (2001-2004, 2005-2007), and Fr. Prex Fajardo ( 2004- 2005).

Fr. Victor Y. Apacible, its present Rector and Parish Priest; whose continuing program of Sacred Heart awareness formation includes Novena Masses to the Sacred Heart on all Fridays of the month, with 24-hour Vigil and Communion of Reparation at Midnight Masses as participated in by all active Church organizations, ministries and communities, ending with the dawn procession for the Blessed Mother Mary, increased Masses, and more Confession Hours on First Fridays, Bible / Recollection Talks on Saturdays.

HEARTSPEAKS, is a newly introduced  year round program of inspirational talks by prominent clergy and lay on their devotion to the Sacred Heart. Held on Thursday before First Friday this was launched by His Eminence Gaudencio Rosales last February 5, 2012 followed by popular healer-priest Fr. Fernando Suarez, Vice-President Jejomar Binay, Media Anchor Mike Enriquez and with Fr. Jerry Orbos recently held May 3.

For the rest of  the year will have distinguished speakers such as Bishop Ted Bacani, D.D., May 31, Fr. Francis Gustilo, SDB, Henrietta de Villa, Bishop Broderick Pabillo, D.D. Mr. Tommy Manaloto and Winnie Monsod.      

The Shrine continues to espouse the vision of the Archdiocese for the Fullness of Life and is continuing to find fresh ways and meaning to the devotion to the Sacred Heart. Fr. Apacible stresses: "Our vision will always be a matter of faith and our life of faith, a matter of the heart". 

As Cardinal Gaudencio Rosales says in his talk - From the HEART: Always start with the HEART for it is in the heart that we know God. It is in the heart where we hear God, through our conscience. It is from the heart where we "get in touch with the truth"  about ourselves as living the truth or not the truth and where we become aware of the presence of God in our lives.

Stella P. Denoga
Makati City, Philippines