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Vatican letter asks priests to turn to the Sacred Heart for emotional maturity

June 11, 2024

» Continue to this story on Dicastery for Clergy (Italian)

CWN Editor's Note: Cardinal Lazarus You Heung-sik, prefect of the Dicastery for the Clergy, and Archbishop AndrĂ©s Gabriel Ferrada Moreira, the dicastery’s secretary, wrote a letter to the priests of the world on June 7, the Solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus and the World Day of Prayer for the Sanctification of Priests.

“Much has been said and written about the importance of the human dimension and emotional maturity in the life of the priest; we are also aware of the many signs of fragility that appear in this area,” they wrote. “In every ecclesial and social context, there are many observations regarding the lack of education on feelings and emotions, as well as the presence of emotional illiteracy and lack of affectivity; some speak of a globalization of indifference, of growing cynicism, together with narcissism and self-referentiality.”

“But how can we take care of our humanity to help us also bear fruit in this way,” they continued, “if not by turning once again to Jesus and his Gospel?” In turning to the Sacred Heart, priests can ask for “the grace to internalize the same sentiments of the Heart of Christ ... Our very human heart, therefore, is the place where Christ wants to continue to come, dwell, live, palpitate until it is pierced with love and for love, in imitation of him.”

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