20 October 2016
20 Oct 2016

Formation training for the General Curia

by  Rinaldo Paganelli,scj

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An interesting training session was held at the Generalate that looked at different perspectives of devotion to the Sacred Heart. Interventions were made by Professors Mariano Delgado, Franziska Metzger and David Neuhold of the University of Lucerne (Switzerland). There were rich insights which showed that it is important to have a good understanding of the past when creating a new identity in the spirituality of the Sacred Heart

Spirituality in search of authors

Devotion to the Sacred Heart in our days is not being researched through the history of theology. However, interesting reflection spaces can be opened, in particular, by noting the fact that speech and images each have their own way of being, of enriching relationships. Speech and image, language and ritual can be combined in a productive way in the logic of communication.formazione-permanens-uni-svi 2

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Images and rituals are carriers of a memory capable of linking the past, present and future and are capable of transferring the transcendent in the immanent, making space and time. It is important to make visible the invisible. The ritual practice of devotion to the Sacred Heart in the shared memory can be strengthened.

Looking for a semantic

The social dimension can occupy an interesting space. No religious response is achieved without emotional involvement. For this to happen effectively you need to find the correct semantics. This is an arduous task because the cultural change we are experiencing is deep. Today it preoccupies certain thinkers, but the issues are found in everyone’s life. Theology raises important issues but more and more there is the need to offer something concrete.

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The strength and weakness of am image

The Sacred Heart attracts attention as an image; the image has a space of action and interest. It expresses the interior life; physically one is confronted with the inner life, called to overcome the tendency toward introspection to create close intimacy. The heart also plays a physical role and metaphorically continues to maintain a significant place.

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The image, interior life and physicality are three essential components in the devotion to the Sacred Heart, which asks to be connected with Jesus Christ, the landmark of Christianity. In this sense, the Sacred Heart, as the only mark to express all the riches of Christ, seems insufficient. There is a need to find appropriate semantics to revive the spirituality of the Sacred Heart. It is a challenging task, but open to interesting avenues of accomplishment.


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