Devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary is an essential part of the message of Fatima, and this devotion is complemented and enriched by devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, because these two hearts are inseparable. Just a few years after Our Lady of the Rosary’s apparitions at Fatima, Our Lord Himself began appearing to Sister Josefa Menendez in the Convent of the Sisters of the Sacred Heart in Poitiers, France from 1920 through 1923 when she died. Sister Josefa’s compilation of these visits is known as The Way of Divine Love and is a very beneficial addition to our spiritual arsenal.
Sister Josefa’s book, The Way of Divine Love has proved to be a worthwhile supplement to our devotion to Our Lady of Fatima. It has an endorsement by Pope Pius XII. I strongly recommend it! Here is a good excerpt from it, although almost any page would have yielded a similar result, it is that packed with beautiful inspirations! From pages 213-215:
“Write for My souls…The soul who constantly unites her life with Mine glorifies Me and does a great work for souls. Thus, if engaged on work of no value in itself…if she bathes it in My Blood or unites it to the work I myself did during My mortal life, it will greatly benefit souls … more perhaps, than if she had preached to the whole world … and that, whether she studies, speaks or writes … whether she sews, sweeps or rests … provided first that the act is sanctioned by obedience or duty and not done from mere caprice; and secondly that it is done in intimate union with Me, with great purity of intention and covered with My Blood.
“I so much want souls to understand this! It is not the action itself which is of value; it is the intention with which it is done. … I have many hidden souls who in their humble labors are very useful workers in My vineyard, for they are moved by love, and they know how to cover their deeds with supernatural gold by bathing them in My Blood. My love goes so far that My souls can draw great treasure out of mere nothing. When as soon as they wake they unite themselves to Me and offer their whole day with a burning desire that My Heart may use it for the profit of souls … when with love they perform their duties, hour by hour and moment by moment … how great is the treasure they amass in one day!
“I will reveal My love to them more and more … it is inexhaustible, and how easy it is for a loving soul to let itself be guided by love.”
The following day, Our Lord told Sister Josefa:
“I would like them to know how much I desire their perfection, and that it consists in doing their ordinary actions in intimate union with Me. If they once grasped this, they could divinize their life and all their activities by this close union with My Heart … and how great is the value of a divinized day! … When a soul is burnt up with desire to love, nothing is a burden to her, but if she feels cold and spiritless everything becomes hard and difficult … let her then come to My Heart to revive her courage … Let her offer Me her dejection and unite it to My fervor; then she may rest content, for her day will be of incomparable value to souls. All human miseries are known to My Heart, and My compassion for them is great. …
“But I desire souls to unite themselves to Me not only in a general way. I long for this union to be constant and intimate as it is between friends who live together, for even if they are not talking all the time, at least they look at each other, and their mutual affectionate little kindnesses are the fruit of their love.
“… But if she (soul) is in the throes of desolation and anguish, she need not fear. I am content with a glance, I understand and this mere look will draw down on her special proofs of My tenderness. I will repeat again to souls how My Heart loves them for I want them to know Me thoroughly that they may make me known to those I place in their care.
“I ardently desire My chosen souls to fix their eyes on Me and never turn them away .. and among them there should be no mediocrity, which usually is the result of a misunderstanding of My love. No! It is neither difficult nor hard to love My Heart, but on the contrary, it is sweet and easy. They need do nothing extraordinary to attain a high degree of love: purity of intention, be the action great or small … intimate union with My Heart and love will do the rest.”
Once I discovered, by God’s grace, Our Lady of Fatima’s true message, I struggled mightily with the task of offering my daily duties as reparation, but quickly became discouraged due to my easily distracted nature. And then, once again by praying to Sister Lucia to help me, I discovered Sister Josefa’s marvelously simple “Way of Divine Love” and it has profited me immensely! I wish I could express to you how valuable this book is and hope that by reading the above excerpt you will be inclined to obtain a copy. It is also available as a Kindle download. Both versions are reasonably priced.
Now here is a neat coincidence: Sister Josefa was Spanish and her sister Angela entered the Carmel of Coimbra and I have read that she was Mistress of Novices when Sister Lucia entered the Carmel! Wouldn’t you love to have been able to be a “fly on the wall” at their meetings!
The message of The Way of Divine Love is balanced between its sacrificial nature and the peace and joy of total oblation to the will of God; the diabolical attacks, the descents into Hell itself, the great suffering, but also the peace and joy that came from total oblation to the will of God, total union with the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Thus, Sister Josefa’s messages comply perfectly with Sister Lucia’s. And isn’t that what we all want – to progress towards total Consecration, total oblation of ourselves to the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary!
We are now going through such challenging times and I believe that Pope Francis has yet more misery in store for us in his “Year of Mercy”; but we have been given such tremendous blessings! We know that the Immaculate Heart of Mary and the Sacred Heart of Jesus will sustain us and our loved ones and that they have provided us with a safe passage through the chaos and the shortest path to union with them.