“Welcome the presence of the Heart of Christ, entrusting your home to Him…Seek to draw from this open heart the saving and healing love that is so necessary for families today…in order to build a civilization of love.”
- Pope St. John Paul II
In the 17th century our Lord appeared to St. Margaret Mary Alacoque and promised eternal salvation to those who will receive Holy Communion on nine consecutive First Fridays in honor of His Sacred Heart. Our Lord revealed that wherever the image of His Sacred Heart was exposed and given special honor, great blessings and graces would abound.
One way to accomplish this goal is to do a formal enthronement of the Sacred Heart in the home. It is very simple act that will bring countless blessings to the family. The Enthronement is more than a blessing of the Sacred Heart of Jesus picture for the home. It is the dedication of a person and family to the Divine Heart of Jesus, to live in union with Him by love, grace and obedience to His Commandments. The Enthronement brings countless graces and blessings, as enumerated in the 12 Promises of the Sacred Heart of Jesus made to St. Margaret Mary.
Enthronement to the Sacred Heart of Jesus is a world-wide apostolate begun in France in 1907 by Fr. Mateo Crawley-Boevey, SSCC, to carry on the work of spreading the Sacred Heart devotion that had begun in France under St. Margaret Mary Alocoque. He believed that in order to win souls for Christ and build a civilization of love, it must start with the evangelization of the family.
The Sacred Heart of Jesus enthronement ceremony was approved by Pope St. Pius X in 1908, and since then this apostolate has enjoyed much success as homes all over the world have enthroned Jesus as their Lord and King. Most recently it has been featured as a way for families to prepare for and respond to the spiritual initiatives of the 2015 World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia, attended by Pope Francis.
To obtain the official printed materials needed for the enthronement including a ceremony certificate, you can contact the Sacred Heart Apostolate. You can also find an online version of the official ceremony here and here.
Sacred Heart of Jesus Enthronement Ceremony in 12 Steps
1. Go to Mass. It is recommended to have Mass celebrated for the intentions of the family on the day of the Enthronement, or at least to attend Mass as a Family and to receive Holy Communion on the Sunday prior to the enthronement.
2. Invite a priest. The presence of a cleric will make this consecration a more solemn occasion, and the ceremony involves prayers and a blessing to be said by him.
3. Prepare the altar. Put in order your house for the enthronement and have holy water ready. You may decorate a white cloth, beautifully decorated with flowers and candles. The picture or statue should be placed on a small table near this "throne" before the ceremony.
4. Blessing of the home. At the set hour, parents and children gather in the main room for the ceremony. Relatives and friends can be invited.
5. The blessing of the image of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. It is important to have a priest preside at the ceremony, but when it is impossible to have him present, the image can be blessed beforehand.
6. The enthronement of the image. The head of the family sets up the images of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in a place of honor, in order to render homage to the reign of the love of Jesus Christ always.
7. Prayer of the Creed. After the blessing, in order to give explicit expression to the faith of the family, all recite the Apostles’ Creed out loud and standing.
8. Words or message of who presides over the enthronement. Everyone is seated while the priest addresses a few words to those present.
9. The formula of consecration. This is a form approved by St. Pius X on May 19, 1908 and is required as such to gain the indulgences.
O Sacred Heart of Jesus, Who didst make known to St. Margaret Mary Thine ardent desire to reign over Christian families, behold us assembled here today to proclaim Thine absolute dominion over our home.
Henceforth we purpose to lead a life like unto Thine so that amongst us may flourish the virtues for which Thou didst promise peace on earth, and for this end we will banish from our midst the spirit of the world which Thou dost abhor so much.
Thou wilt reign over our understanding by the simplicity of our faith. Thou wilt reign over our hearts by an ardent love for Thee; and may the flame of this love be ever kept burning in our hearts by the frequent reception of the Holy Eucharist.
Deign, O Divine Heart, to preside over our meetings, to bless our undertakings both spiritual and temporal, to banish all worry and care, to sanctify our joys and soothe our sorrows. If any of us should ever have the misfortune to grieve Thy Sacred Heart, remind him of Thy goodness and mercy towards the repentant sinner.
Lastly when the hour of separation will sound and death will plunge our home into mourning, then shall we all and every one of us be resigned to Thy eternal decrees, and seek consolation in the thought that we shall one day be reunited in heaven, where we shall sing the praises and blessings of Thy Sacred Heart for all eternity.
May the Immaculate Heart of Mary and the glorious Patriarch St. Joseph offer Thee this our Consecration and remind us of the same all the days of our life. Glory to the Divine Heart of Jesus, our King and our Father!
10. Prayer for the missing and deceased. Passed away family members should be called to mind. Thus say one Our Father and one Hail Mary for these, and for those who are absent and missing.
11. Consecration of children. While not an official part of the enthronement, the children may recite a poem or sing a hymn in honor of the Sacred Heart. This is a short one:
Most sweet Jesus, Divine Friend of children, receive our hearts, make them pure, holy and happy; receive also our bodies, our souls, and all our strength. We consecrate ourselves to Thee now and forever. Be Thou alone our King. All our thoughts, and our words, our actions, and our prayers, we consecrate to Thee, our Friend and our King.
12. Final benediction. The priest blesses those present and a certificate of enthronement can be signed by the priest and the family.