Are Sacred Heart/Divine Mercy Devotions Similar?


During the homily Friday for the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart, Father said that the many of us might have a better understanding of the contemporary version of the traditional devotion to the Sacred Heart ~ the devotion to the Divine Mercy. Therefore, his homily focused on St. Faustina and the Divine Mercy.

I know there may be some similarities in the Sacred Heart Devotion and the Divine Mercy Devotion…please explain to me the crux of Father’s homily (please do not recommend that I talk with him about this). I have been trying to wrap my brain around this one and have not been able to figure this one out. Are they that similar?


“jmjconder” To the best of my knowledge, they are separate devotions. But I think that the Sacred Heart and Divine Mercy Devotions… compliment one another. Perhaps that is what your priest meant?

I once heard it said (probably on EWTN)… that three devotions to the Heart of Jesus could be: To His Sorrowful Heart… for through It comes Redemption; To His Sacred Heart… for through It comes His Love; and to His Merciful Heart… for through It comes His Forgiveness.

I thought that was a profound way to view the Heart of Jesus. So many different aspects of His One Heart. :heart:

I don’t know if this helps or not. But I hope so. God bless.


I wonder if it was because some people find it difficult to view the heart of a person as the source of love and other emotions? I’m thinking of the impact of modern medical knowledge about the brain, for instance.

I have a dfficulty with devotion to the Sacred Heart, particularly since the development of heart transplants. Clearly, if a heart can be changed from one person to another, without the recipient taking on the donor’s feelings, it can’t be the source of an individual’s pattern of loving, sacrifice etc - it is only a muscle.

Perhaps the priest felt that some woulld find a less literal symbol more helpful. I’m really sorry, but I find some of the writings about and litanies to the Sacred Heart crude and too physical. Devotion to Divine Mercy seems more spiritual.


But when you consider, that a lance was thrust into the Heart of Jesus… both divine and human… it makes sense. The origins of devotion to the Heart of Jesus… is clear.

“… one solider thrust his lance into His side, and immediately blood and water flowed out”. (John 19:34)

Tradition has always been, that the lance was thrust into the Heart of Jesus. This passage from Scripture is especially similar to the pale and red rays, which flowed from the Heart of Jesus, during the apparitions to St. Faustina.


What a beautiful way to reflect on these three special devotions ~ each having their unique place in our spiritual lives. Thank you so much.


Thank you SO much to the person asked this question!

I’m a new convert and always wondered this, since I have a history w/ sacred heart and a love for the Chaplet of the Divine Mercy!

Great insight!:thumbsup:


Actually there have been cases recorded of people receiving a donor organ and taking on characteristics of the donor - for example taking up hobbies that the donor enjoyed that the donee previously had been uninterested in. And it’s only in rare cases that the identity of the donor is found out anyway, so it’s not like the donees do this because they know whose organ they’ve received.

So you never know … :hypno:

As for the Sacred Heart Litany not being spiritual … piffle.

Look at some of the titles addressed to the Sacred Heart. ‘Tabernacle of the Most High’? “Desire of the everlasting hills’? 'King and Centre of all hearts”?

There’s only one that is remotely physical - ‘pierced with a lance’, and you can hardly argue with something scripture says actually happened! And which by the way also forms the foundation of the Divine Mercy image as well, since the blood and water are referred to by St Faustina.


Doing an intense study on the physical heart and its functions would be an awesome journey in terms of the facts behind the organ PLUS then doing a word study (Hebrew / Greek) on it to parallel the two meanings. It’s late, I’m tired…but it got me thinking of all the scriptures NT and OT referring…just one: out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh; Mary pondered all these things in her heart…there’s so much about this organ in the bible, and because God created so many parallels in nature w/ the spiritual, IE what water is/what it symbolizes/used for baptism, etc. I wish I weren’t so tired because it would wonderful to go on and on…
love to you all!


You misread me. I did not say that Devotion to the Sacred Heart is not spiritual. I said that some may find the Divine Mercy devotion * more* spiritual. Different devotions attract different types.

Re cases taking on the characteristics of the donor. I think that needs more evidence to be convincing. Not everything in the newspapers is true!! Apart from coincidences, it’s always possible that a patient exaggarates to get their name in a newspaper for reward.

The logical extension would be that the patient with family, possibly children of his own, starts to love that family less, and were he to meet the family/spouse of the donor, would love them more.

Do you mean that you believe that is possible?


The Sacred Heart and the Divine Mercy devotions are intertwined. In a nutshell:

Devotion to the Sacred Heart does not mean that we have a devotion to the actual physical heart of Jesus. The heart symbolizes love. The Sacred Heart devotion is all about the love that Christ has for us all. In the Sacred Heart, we recognize the love of Jesus Christ. We acknowledge that this love is what drove Christ to sacrifice himself for us on the Cross.

Christ has mercy on us because he loves us. The Divine Mercy is granted to us because Christ loves us deeply. The Sacred Heart symbolises the love, which moves Christ to have mercy on us. This is why the Divine Mercy devotion and the Sacred Heart devotion are so similar.

Love is the foundation block on which Divine Mercy is built. The Sacred Heart devotion reveals the reason why Christ grants unlimited mercy to repentant sinners.

I encourage you all to read the Encyclical of Pius XII, HAURIETIS AQUAS:

On Devotion To The Sacred Heart

Here is a quotation from the aforementioned Encyclical:

The other reason which refers in a particular manner to the Heart of the divine Redeemer, and likewise demands in a special way that the highest form of worship be paid to it, arises from the fact that His Heart, more than all the other members of His body, is the natural sign and symbol of His boundless love for the human race. “There is in the Sacred Heart,” as Our predecessor of immortal memory, Leo XIII, pointed out, “the symbol and express image of the infinite love of Jesus Christ which moves us to love in return.”(16)


The idea is the same, although the two devotions came about totally separate from each other. If I were a priest and were preaching on that day, I’d talk mostly about the Sacred Heart, but maybe refer to the Divine Mercy. They are very similar devotions, but they are still unique and each has their own appeal- there are other days to talk more on the Divine Mercy. I don’t think the priest was wrong in his approach- just not my preference.


Exactly! I was listening to a program of Fr Groschel’s the other day about the Sacred Heart and he spoke of the fact that, although there is less of the traditional Sacred Heart devotion around now than in previous generations (fewer people honouring the First Friday and so on) that the rapid increase in recent years in the associated Divine Mercy devotion may fill the gap.


Actually, My doctor was telling me about how people’s personalities often change after major heart surgery (such as bypass). He said that the vagal nerve that is the main nerve that stimulates the brain is wrapped around the heart so that there is no way for someone to do a bypass, for instance, without cutting that nerve. Makes you think!


Maybe that was Father Bing’s “One in their Hearts”? :smiley:

brigid12, that is really fascinating. It’s really crazy how the physical can affect the spiritual. I always forget about how that is.


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