When I first met the woman who would become my wife, her family had been saying a prayer to the Sacred Heart of Jesus every night for as long as she could remember. It was a variant on the Renewal of the Enthronement of the Sacred Heart. Now Jacinta and I have said that same prayer every night with our kids for years and years.
A few weeks ago, we began Project Bard: we determined to build a treasury of songs by singing more or less every night–rounds, hymns, camp-fire songs, whatever. To approach the ocean by little streams, we began with some of the goofier selections from Cedarmont Kids’ 100 Singalong Songs for Kids.
We always end our singing session with night prayers, so one day it hit me: why not sing night prayers? It wasn’t hard to adapt our Sacred Heart prayer to a traditional hymn tune from the Roman Breviary, drawing on Fr. Samuel Weber’s Hymnal for the Hours. The result was just a little thing for my family, not really memorable poetry, but given Austin Kleon’s principle about sharing your work, and given that today is the memorial of St. Margaret Mary Alacoque, I think I’ll toss it up here:
Dear Sacred Heart of Jesus true,
We swear our pledge of love to you.
Our hearts to yours by love secure,
And to your Mother’s heart most pure.
May we forgive each other’s faults
As you forgive both deed and thought,
And love each other more each day,
And seek you in the stranger’s face.
To keep our love forever strong,
Please never let us wait for long
To lift our lives with yours in Mass
And eat the Manna unsurpassed.
Dear Lord, our family’s king and friend,
We thank you for this day’s safe end.
Protect us through the dark of night,
And lead us on to heaven’s light.
Most Sacred Heart thy kingdom come;
Pray Mary’s heart, all free of taint;
Pray Joseph, to those hearts most dear;
Pray guardian angels, patron saints.