By Dr Jeanette Pinto
June is the month devoted to the feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. It reminds us of the mystery of the Holy Trinity and of God’s revelation of Himself to us. Not too long ago the Holy Father Pope Francis declared: “Mercy is the Lord’s most powerful message.” Where does this mercy come from? You guessed right- from the loving Heart of Jesus. He truly has a Pro-life heart.
With the Indian summer just coming to an end everyone braving the monsoon with the wind and rain which is welcoming and soothing. It is like welcoming the sight of an oasis in a desert. The heat of the sun and the humidity can be exhausting and life ebbing. A person exposed to this bears a tired body which languishes for nourishment and the sagging spirit deeply desires to be uplifted; that is exactly when a person longs for the sight of an oasis. Truly then the month of June is welcome as it becomes joyful, life giving and exhilarating. It is also exciting after a long vacation to look forward to a new season and routine for children and family.
We have all been babies once upon a time. Babies have hearts that radiate love like the sun in the tropics. But as we grow up, the bumps and bruises, and hardships of life gradually force us to layer our heart with toughness and defensiveness locking the love inside and disallowing the love of people from entering. The common factors that close the heart are Fear, Resentment, Unsolved grief, Jealousy, Pain, Attachments, and Ego. This leaves us with a closed or cluttered heart. Only selfless people can keep their hearts always open like Jesus, Mother Mary and extraordinary human beings like Mother Teresa. The radiance of their open merciful, compassionate hearts is likened to a ‘pro-life mystery.’ They are fully life-giving.
If anyone wants to have a pro-life heart then kindness is the key to unlock the Love, Compassion and Forgiveness present in this mysterious heart. When your heart is filled with love, you feel happy and peaceful for no external reason. The basic energy is the loving, life-giving energy of the heart. Compassion is the response to the suffering of others that motivates a desire to reach out, help another and soothe his pain. It literally means “to suffer together”. In order to cultivate compassion in others, we should start modelling kindness and show love first in the family, where each person can experience very deeply and intimately the love of Jesus. It can be quite contagious and spreads to friends, neighbours and others around.
Resentment which is past anger is normally built over months and years; it is the junk that clogs the free flow of love in and out of your heart. It also forms a crust over the heart like plaque making it hard and perhaps diseased. In that situation forgiveness is the only universal solvent that washes the crust away. When you open your heart and allow yourself to fill it with love, you will feel the clouds around your heart wafting and dispersing. When you ask for forgiveness you are saying, “Please take me back into your heart.” Imagine how you would feel when slowly the layers of resentment and pain peel off with forgiveness. Many gifts and blessings will follow and be bestowed upon you. When we make this our motto in life it will help create a unique society. We need to reach out to others as channels of mercy and compassion.
The life of Jesus is rooted in love; all the miracles he worked were the result of his Pro-life heart. His love is total and unconditional; His heart is sensitive and responsive to the needs of all his people. His love is universal, embracing all, the rich, the poor, the dregs of society, the prostitute the sinner et al. He does not refuse anyone. Jesus’ love is persevering and enduring to the end. His love unites and binds together in community. Truly His Sacred heart is patient, forgiving, active, practical and efficacious to the end.
As we rejoice in His glory we remember the gifts of His Heart and feel drawn us closer to His love. May the Prolife heart of Jesus bring all humankind into His kingdom of justice, peace and love.
Dr Jeanette Pinto, an educator for the past 5 decades, headed the Department of History was Vice Principal of St. Xavier’s College Mumbai, and retired as Principal of Sophia College, Mumbai. She is a counsellor and conductor of Personal Enrichment Programmes for students and teachers.
She set up the Human Life Committee in the Archdiocese of Bombay. As a sex educator she has given talks on Human Sexuality in India and abroad. In 2014 she received the Rachana Outstanding Woman of the Year for her Pro-life work presented by the Diocese of Mangalore. She has attended many National and International Pro-life conferences and given talks at other fora on various women’s issues.
She is author of a couple of books, her most recent ones are titled: I’m Pro-Life Are you? & Sex Talk: Parent to Child. She has also written a number of articles on a variety of themes and subjects, which have been published in research journals, The Examiner and other Catholic publications.