A VERY USEFUL MANNER OF HIDING ONESELF IN THE FIVE SACRED WOUNDS
This was taught to St Mechtilde by Christ Himself as she went to kiss the Holy Cross one Good Friday. (Book 1, Ch. 23 and 29)
I thank Thee, O Lord Jesus Christ, for the painful Wound of Thy LEFT FOOT, from which flowed the Precious Blood that washes away our sins. In It I sink and hide all the sins I have ever committed.
I thank Thee, O Lord Jesus Christ, for the painful Wound of Thy RIGHT FOOT, from which the Fountain of Peace flowed to us. In Its depths I sink and bury all my desires, that they may be purified and remain unspotted by any earthly stain.
I thank Thee, O Lord Jesus Christ, for the painful Wound of Thy LEFT HAND, from which the Well of Grace flowed to us. In It I enclose all my spiritual and bodily ills, that in union with Thy sufferings they may become sweet to me, and by patience become a fragrant odour before God.
I thank Thee, O Lord Jesus Christ, for the painful Wound of Thy RIGHT HAND, from which the Medicine of the Soul was poured forth. In It I hide all my negligences and omissions which I have committed in my virtuous exercises that they may be atoned for by Thy zealous works.
I thank Thee, O Lord Jesus Christ, for the healing Wound of Thy SWEETEST HEART, from which Living Water and Blood and the riches of all good flowed to us. I place myself in this Wound, and there unite all my imperfect love to Thy Divine Love, that thus it may be perfected.
Jesus asked St Mechtilde to pray after each division of five:
O Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the Living God, accept this prayer, with that surpassing love, with which Thou didst endure all the Wounds of Thy most Holy Body. Have mercy on me, and on all sinners, and on all the Faithful, living and departed. Grant them grace and mercy, remission of sins, and everlasting life. Amen.
REVELATIONS FROM SAINT MECHTILDE
All the graces we have ever received have flowed from the Sacred Heart of Jesus. It is the love burning there that caused Him to bestow them on us so abundantly.
From the Sacred Heart flowed the Precious Blood that merited these graces for us during the Passion. So gratitude is a duty for the disciple of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, and with Saint Mechtilde we should say: “What thanksgiving, O source of all sweetness, should be paid you for that loving wound received by you on the Cross for man? Victorious love pierced Your loving Heart with a dart, and for our healing water and blood gushed forth. And you also, conquered by the love You had for Your spouse, did die of love.”
The Blessed Virgin, safe guide of grateful souls, will teach us our duty: “Draw nigh and kiss the wounds my Son received for love of thee.
But kiss thrice His Loving Heart, thanking Him for having given Himself, now and for ever, to you and to all the elect.”
And our good Mother continues offering us the other Wounds of her well-beloved Son.
“In kissing the Wound in His Right Hand, thank Him for having helped and cooperated in all Your good works.
At the Left Hand thank Him that He will always be for you an assured refuge.
Kiss also the Wound in His Right Foot in thanks giving for the ardent desire which caused Him to thirst after thee, all His life.
Kiss gratefully also the Wound in His Left Foot, for there you shalt always find forgiveness for Your sins.”
It is a pious practice often to press our lips to the wound of His most Sweet Heart, from which springs for us refreshing water and inebriating wine, the Blood of Christ and, with it, all graces in an infinite number; but in order to please the Sacred Heart we should also add a continual remembrance of it.
“Let men meditate with profound gratitude, and keep always in their memory the acts of virtue I practised while on earth, all the sufferings and injuries I bore during thirty-three years, the destitution in which I received the affronts I had to bear from My own creatures, and at last My death on the Cross, that most bitter death borne for love of man. By it, I bought his soul with My Precious Blood to make it My spouse. Let each one have as much love and gratitude for all these benefits as if I had suffered them for his salvation alone.”
Such thanksgiving is a joy to the Sacred Heart and profitable to ourselves. This joy and profit cannot be better expressed than by the following passage: Mechtilde thanked our Lord for His Sacred Wounds, begging Him to wound her soul with as many wounds as He had received in His Holy Body. Our Lord then said to her: “As often as a man grieves in his soul over the memory of My Passion, so often does he seem to lay a sweet rose on My wounds. From this wound will go forth a dart of love to pierce his soul with a saving wound.”
“O Sacred Heart of Jesus, we lay on Your wound this rose of gratitude, but in return pierce our hearts with the dart of Your love.”