An electronic reproduction of the Guide for Victim Souls of the Sacred Heart of Jesus compiled from various sources by the Very Rev. Joseph Kreuter, OSB.

Nihil Obstat: Arthur J. Scanlan, S.T.D., Censor Librorum. Imprimatur + Stephen J. Donahue, S.T.D., Administrator of New York; 1939.

According to the United States Copyright Office the copyright has expired on this book.

In your charity, please pray that the Sacred Heart draws many souls here to read, contemplate and be enkindled.


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From the Biography of Mo. Marie Deluil-Martiny: Immolation
by Abbe L. Laplace.
Nihil Obstat. Authur J. Scanlan, S.T.D.
Imprimatur +Patrick Cardinal Hays
New York, July 14, 1926.

Part II; Chapter 1: The Aim of Victim Souls

The aim of Victim Souls is threefold:

1. To repair the insults and outrages offered to the Sacred Heart.
2. To gain the grace of conversion for sinners.
3. To implore the special blessing of God upon the labors of priests and Relgious.

Victim Souls Should Sacrifice Themselves for the Sacred Heart of Jesus

The primary aim of Victim Souls is to make reparation to the Sacred Heart of Our Lord, in the first place for their own unfaithfulness, and then for the sins of the whole world. This thought of holy expiation should permeate their whole lives.

It is therefore not merely one day of each month, namely, the First Friday, that they devote to this purpose; not merely one Holy Communion each week; nor even merely one hour of each day: they consecrate to this high purpose every day of the year, its every hour, minute, and moment; every Holy Communion, every good work, every act of virtue; in short, their whole lives, together with their labors, sacrifices, and sufferings offered for this end.

The chief purpose of Victim Souls in all their works and sufferings must therefore be reparation, in some measure, of the terrible insults offered in our days to the Sacred Heart of Jesus in the Sacrament of His love. This by no means excludes other intentions. Though Victim Souls are expected to offer each Holy Communion in a spirit of reparation, they may, nevertheless, offer the fruits of their Communion for some other intention, for a particular person, or for the obtaining of some special favor. All they need to do is to preserve the consciousness that their whole life, and consequently also this particular Communion, is above all, consecrated to reparation.

Surely such a general intention is eminently noble, and must prove acceptable to a soul that has an enthusiastic love for Our Savior. When we reflect upon the hatred which the world bears to a loving God and realize the Lord of Heaven and earth is spurned and offended; when we realize that the set purpose of so many millions of men in our day is to destroy all faith in Christ and to blot out the very memory of the Redemption wrought on Calvary; when we read of sacrilegious hands laid upon the Person of Our Lord and Savior in the tabernacle by wicked men, must not all of this, if there be but a spark of love for Christ in our hearts, urge us powerfully to make reparation to the wounded Heart of Our Savior as far as lies in our power, to offer Him in the spirit of reparation all the labors and sacrifices and sufferings of our whole life?

Victim Souls must therefore rally round the wounded Heart of the Savior as so many seraphs on earth, whose whole endeavor is to offer Him honor, love, and reparation. They must unite themselves with His perpetual sacrifice on our altars in order thereby to be themselves unceasingly a propitiatory offering with Him, through Him, and in Him. With this end in view they must be ready to abandon themselves completely to His good pleasure and to accept whatever sufferings He may wish to send them. They must look upon the sufferings of their souls, that interior martyrdom of dryness and lack of consolation, as their precious portion on earth, because thereby they are better enabled to repair the insults and outrages heaped upon the adorable Heart of the Savior.

How great and noble is such a soul. It unselfishly forgets its own interests in order to live entirely for the interests of the Sacred Heart! And how Our Savior must be comforted and pleased by the manifestation of such nobility!

“You are indeed,” says Cardinal Mermillot to Victim Souls, “the comforters of the Heart of the Savior. Like Mary Magdalen you pour forth at the feet of the Master the precious ointment of your prayers and good works, and the tears of your devotion and love. Like Veronica you wipe His adorable countenance with the veil of humble self-denial.”

Is it not verily an ideal task which is set before these Victim Souls, that of offering reparation to their outraged Lord? No less ideal is the second object of the Association.

Victim Souls Should Sacrifice Themselves for the Salvation of Souls

The second aim of Victim Souls should be to implore the grace of conversion for poor sinners. If the primary aim of these souls has for its immediate object the honor and reparation of the Sacred Heart, the same object can be gained indirectly through the offering of themselves to lead back many stray souls to the Sacred Heart.

It is to this second aim that Victim Souls devote not merely one or the other good work, but their entire life with all its labors and sufferings. All this they do with a double intention, first as a tribute of reparation, and then as a means of the conversion of poor sinners. In so doing they may have in view some particular sinner or all poor sinners in general. At the same time they may offer up their Masses and Communions or any other pious exercise either for themselves or for their relatives and friends.

But as Victim Souls must realize that the offering of themselves and their good works is of little value in a work of such tremendous importance, since not even all mankind taken collectively can make adequate satisfaction for even one sinner, they ought not to neglect to unite their good works with the infinite sacrifice of the holy Mass, continuously being offered up to God throughout the world for poor sinners. They should therefore pursue, as it were, the divine Victim from altar to altar, in order to offer their good works in union with Him.

It is therefore recommended that they frequently join in spirit in offering of the many Masses which are being said at every hour of the day in some quarter of the globe, for which purpose they might accustom themselves at the beginning of each new action to say in the secrecy of their hearts: “Dear Savior, I perform this action for love of Thee as an act of reparation to Thy Sacred Heart. I unite it with Thine own sacrifice of the altar and offer it to Thee for the salvation of poor sinners.” Thereby their actions, which are of small value in themselves, receive a great worth; thereby they gain a share in the fruits of the Mass for those who, because of their continued sins and impenitence, would otherwise be deprived of them.

In this manner, then, do Victim Souls endeavor to continue mystically the sublime propitiatory sacrifice of Calvary in their own lives. They unite the sacrifice of themselves with the sacrifice of the Cross, and thereby, according to the words of the Apostle, fill up what is wanting of the sufferings of Christ. Thus they exercise the mystic priesthood of which St. Peter speaks: You are a chosen generation, a kingly priesthood” (1 Peter 2:9).

Victim Souls Should Sacrifice Themselves for Priests and Religious

Victim Souls have a third object in view, to implore the blessing of Heaven upon the apostolic labors of priests, in order that the Sacred Heart of Jesus may be glorified as much as possible by His chosen servants.

It is precisely by prayer and sacrifice for priests that the Association performs an eminently apostolic work. For, it goes without saying, that the conversion of sinners is not so much the result of the efforts of the priest in the pulpit or in the confessional, as rather the work of God’s grace. The priest is, so to speak, only the channel through which God’s grace flows into souls; nay, in most cases he is merely the exterior force which sets in motion the grace of God. But the grace of conversion must be implored and in a sense merited, and it is implored chiefly by sacrifice. Victim Souls, therefore, by means of sacrifice, become co-workers of the priest in that great apostolate, the salvation of souls.

Now, we may ask: Who can become members of an Association of so high an ideal and purpose? Shall membership be limited to only the holiest and most courageous souls, who give evidence of true heroism in their spirit of sacrifice? Indeed, this is the ideal of Victim Souls, even though they may never reach it completely. But it is by no means necessary actually to possess this ideal disposition before joining the Association. The only necessary requisite for becoming a member is love of Our Savior, love of His Sacred Heart; not indeed a mere love of feeling, but an active love, a love urging us on to do something for Our Savior and His Sacred Heart, a love which will not shrink from sacrifice when there is question of making reparation to His Sacred Heart for the numberless offenses which are heaped upon Him.

The Association does not exclude even those who in their former life may have caused bitter grief to the Heart of their Savior. On the contrary, they will find in the Association the very best means of repairing, by redoubled efforts, their former unfaithfulness and offenses. In our works of reparation it is well ever to be mindful of our own offenses, just as the saints, conscious of their own guilt, thought that they could never do penance enough for their sins and negligences. It would surely be a mistake if even the most perfect of Victim Souls were ever to forget their own sinfulness, and neglect to make reparation and ask pardon for them.

Only those souls in whom love for Christ has completely died out, or whose love has grown so weak that they are unwilling to make sacrifices of any kind, are excluded from the Association. Anyone, therefore, who is willing to make sacrifices may courageously become a member.

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