October 17                                                                                                                                      Patron of:
                                                                                                                                      Devotees of the Sacred Heart,
                                                                                                                                       loss of parents, polio patients   

MARGARET Alacoque was born July 22, 1647, in France.  Her father died when she was 8 and she was sent to the Poor Clares at Charolles to study.
When she was 11, she became very sick and was sent home.  She remained in bed until she was 15. The Blessed Virgin Mary healed her from her crippling disease.

At the age of 20, Margaret had a vision.  That vision inspired her to join a convent.  At 22, she made her profession at the convent of the Visitation at Paray-le-Monial. That's when she added "Mary" to her name

Our Lord appeared to Margaret Mary many times.  In 1675, Our Lord asked her to spread devotion to His Most Sacred Heart.
She did as she was asked with much trouble.  In 1688, a chapel dedicated to the Sacred Heart was built in Paray-le-Monial.  Soon the devotion began to spread with the help of the Visitandine Nuns and the priests of the Society of Jesus.
When she was 43, Margaret Mary fell ill. She received the Last Sacraments, saying, "I need nothing but God, and to lose myself in the heart of Jesus."  St. Margaret Mary died on October 17, 1690.
The devotion that Our Lord gave to the world through her was officially approved by Pope Clement XIII in 1765.
St. Margaret Mary Alacoque was canonized by Pope Benedict XV in 1920.

O Holy Visitandine, to hear your name is to recall the Sacred Heart Devotion, especially as practiced on First Fridays and in making reparation for sins. From early youth you dedicated yourself to Jesus and you exhibited fervent love for him in the Eucharist. You became his chosen vessel to spread the devotion to the Sacred heart which has done wonders in modern times. Make all of us realize ever more Christ's words: "Behold this Heart that has so greatly loved people." Amen.

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