Sunday, January 06, 2008

Medieval Carthusian Makes Victim Soul Reference

Just read this in the ancient meditations book, regarding the Sacred Heart and an appeal to be utilized as a victim soul. Written by a Carthusian monk of the Middle Ages:

Here, O Sacred Heart of Jesus, Thou sayest to my heart: Take Me as the price of thy ransom. And it is here, O my God, Thou fire of consuming charity, that I should say: Take this heart of flesh, and make it a victim of Thy love.

I'm not that well-read and no scholar, but this is the earliest instance or reference to one asking to be a victim soul, that I have read thus far. It reminds one of the prayer of the Raccolta:

Heart of Jesus, Victim of Love, vouchsafe that I become a living, holy, pleasing holocaust in Thy sight.

[A monk of a Cistercian Abbey gave me this prayer to pray, saying it would bring joy. It's been three years, but there is joy now. A woman in the pew in front of me this morning looked back and asked how I was, and I admit to have been dealing with high-level pain but was trying not to show it, but rather was all the more recollected and interior in handling it. I simply said, "Pain--but at peace with it." That sufficed. I could not speak more, as all energy was required to manage the pain and to stay deep, deep, down within the Sacred Heart.]

Peace and joy yet seem cousins or even siblings, or maybe part of the same apple! Can't say I was joyful this morning other than with a joy that I had peace and could remain quite calm, albeit very distant to the world around me.

What does it mean to be made into a victim of Christ's love? What is a victim of love? Well, we each and all can ponder this. Several years ago an Episcopalian friend riled at my mention of being a vicim; so I wrote about the good of victimhood, as our culture and time period have made victim seem a negative, weak, and undesirable label or way of being. There is much benefit to being a victim soul--benefit for all and then some!


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