|(Basilica of the Sacred Heart)|
“In Your dear presence I humbly kneel, sweet Savior mine; and while I contemplate Your goodness to me I bewail my base ingratitude towards You. My Jesus, mercy…and grace!
Oh...I am astonished at my boldness, when I consider that I am here in Your very presence, in the presence of the omnipotent God! Were not my proper place in deepest hell, after all that I have done against You?...but instead of that I linger in Your consoling presence here, delighting in the tender familiarities of Your boundless love!...It is still permitted me peacefully to repose in the fragrant atmosphere of prayer; I am still tolerated among the good. Unto the hermits of the desert You gave to drink water from the rock-bound spring; and to eat, the herbs and roots of the earth. But to me You give the adorable Food of Your Flesh and Blood. How can I but marvel?
I acknowledge it, my Jesus: it is bold of me to linger here in the delicious abundance of Your graces. But, surely, since You do not spurn my poor, miserable self, neither will You reject my heartfelt sorrow.
Dearest Savior, my heart is aching so! How I wish I had never offended You, my best, most loving Father! But see…I have come, back…all ashamed. I have come to ask forgiveness…Do You know who I am? Ah, yes…alas! I am the one who did spit upon You, who gave You a blow on the cheek, who scourged You, crucified You, put You to death…not even the sight of Your precious Blood, flowing in streams from Your so cruelly mangled Body, could keep me from merciless, heartless, bitter wrong…And now You behold me again. But, Jesus, I am not the miserable creature I was then!
No; Your love has conquered me wholly…Oh, now pierce my heart with Your love and let me die for You! In those sad days it was sin — now it is sorrow, 0 dearest Lord! Be merciful, spare me, 0 Jesus
…I filled Your soul in the Garden of Gethsemani with fear and sorrow even unto death; now I will comfort it and make it rejoice by fervent Holy Communion and loving visits to You in this Sacrament of Your love. I bound Your Body to a pillar and scourged it so unmercifully that Your sacred Flesh was torn to fragments and Your precious Blood flowed in streams to the ground; now I will receive that divine Body devoutly and often, and each time I will solemnly promise never again to let my passions hurt You in any way.
…Yes, I condemned You to death. 0 dear Jesus, now I am going. to visit You often in Your earthly dwelling place; here I am going to offer my life to You; here, with You and from You, I am going to seek the life of grace and the pledge of life ever- lasting…”