On this page you’ll find:
The Church Union and The Society have produced a booklet with a short reading and thought for every day of Advent which is linked below.
A series of videos will be released to accompany the booklet: http://sswsh.com/youtube
Saints and Feasts of the Month
The Rosary is a devotion that has shown its worth for eight centuries. This leaflet will help you start using it. You can buy a set of rosary beads from Amazon; there is a price to suit almost anyone. You can also use your fingers to count the Hail Marys. Once you’re used to it, you get caught up in the meditation and the prayers form a kind of backdrop — hence the beads or fingers to keep you on track with the minimum of distraction. You can buy books of rosary devotion or download helpful materials. There are versions for children, too and even rosary apps for tablets and smartphones.
The Sacred Heart of Jesus
Statues or pictures of the Sacred Heart of Jesus are found in many homes and churches. It is an image that shows God’s boundless and passionate love for us. The feast of the Sacred Heart is kept on the Friday 19 days after Pentecost, but devotion to the Sacred Heart is something which can sustain us spiritually throughout the year.
Devotion to the Sacred Heart became popular in England in medieval times, as the faithful meditated on the wounds of Jesus brought about by His Passion and on the Heart of Jesus pierced by a lance. The writings of Julian of Norwich talk about Jesus showing her His side during her visions of Him, and Jesus talking of His love for us with the words “See how I love you”.
The devotion to the Sacred Heart in its more modern form was spread by St Margaret Mary Alacoque, who lived in the second half of the 17th century. She was a French nun in the town of Paray-le-Monial and had visions of Jesus, where Our Lord revealed to her His Sacred Heart. During these visions, He told her of His love for us and His desire for us to be devoted to His Sacred Heart.
The symbolism of the Sacred Heart shows a heart that is often surrounded by light, depicting the divine light which shines from the Heart of Jesus. There is a wound in the heart where the lance was thrust into the side of Jesus on the Cross. The Heart is surrounded by the crown of thorns, showing how His Heart is wounded by our sins, and is surmounted by a cross and flames of fire, symbolising the transformative power of God’s love for us.
In this booklet you will find a selection of prayers to use in your devotions to the Sacred Heart throughout the year. Perhaps you might wish to light a candle before a shrine to the Sacred Heart, either at home or in church, as you pray. Or perhaps you can refer to this booklet when you feel the need to be closer to God’s love after a difficult encounter of some sort. However you use this booklet, our prayer is that we may all grow closer to the Sacred Heart in our day-to-day lives and find an outpouring of God’s love in that way.
Praying with Mary
Church of England Nationwide Guidance
Please follow these hyperlinks for further details nationwide:
Church Union Resources
Here is a link to resources provided by the Church Union, one of the catholic societies of the C of E: https://www.churchunion.co.uk/coronavirusresources
There is a new phone resource called Daily Hope. When you phone it, you hear a message from the Archbishop, and can then opt to:
- listen to a well-known hymn and a talk about it (option 1);
- listen to hymns on a loop (option 2);
- Listen to prayers being read (option 3).
This could be helpful for people isolated at home and is completely free of charge.