If you could imagine a combination of St. Gertrude the Great, St. Thérèse of Lisieux, Blessed Columba Marmion, just to name a few of the greats, all compiled into one book, this is, In Sinu Jesu. Recently I was given In Sinu Jesu, by a friend who told me that this is the sort of book that one wants to read in chapel, before the Blessed Sacrament. This is true, and therefore makes it very difficult to write about this book. — But I will do my best, and pray that the words alone, words given by Our Blessed Lord and His Most Holy Mother, will touch the hearts of all of you who will read this humble review.
In Sinu Jesu — which roughly translated means, "on the breast of Jesus" — came about in the silence of the True Presence of Our Lord, during adoration before the Blessed Sacrament by a Benedictine Monk who chooses to remain anonymous. This is his journal which he kept during adoration, and consists largely of words "given" to him by Our Lord and Our Lady through locution. In his own words he explains:
"Here is the text as I have transcribed it over the years from the notebooks that I started to keep in 2007. The vocabulary and the style are mine, but the substance of what I wrote came during prayer, without any effort or reflection on my part. There would be an inner movement to write, and I would write until the inspiration stopped. After writing, there would be a grace of quiet union with Our Lord or with Our Lady. On a few occasions, there were'words'from saints or from holy people."
The book, which includes an imprimatur from Bishop Michael Smith, Meath Mullingar, Ireland, along with a Nihil Obstat, is all about prayer, adoration of the Holy Eucharist, sacrifice and friendship with Jesus, but probably most importantly today — the renewal of the priesthood:
"I am about to renew the priesthood of My Church in holiness. I am very close to cleansing My priests of the impurities that defile them. Soon, very soon, I will pour out graces of spiritual healing upon all My priests. I will separate those who will accept the gift of My Divine friendship from those who will harden their hearts against Me. To the first, I will give radiant holiness like that of John and of My apostles in the beginning. From the others, I will take away even what they think they have. It must be so. I want the priests of My Church clean in heart and faithful in responding to the immense love with which I have loved each one of them and chosen each one for Myself and for the realization of the designs of My Heart. Those who do not live in My friendship betray Me and impede My work. They detract from the beauty of holiness that I would see shine in My Church. I weep over their hardness of heart, and My Immaculate Mother, their sorrowing Mother, weeps with Me over them.
"The renewal of My priesthood in the Church will begin from the fire of love that blazes in the Sacrament of My Body and Blood. I call all priests to seek My Eucharistic Face and to abide in My presence. I want all My priests to discover My open Heart, My living Heart beating with love for them, and pouring forth a purifying stream of Blood and of Water for their holiness and for the life of the world. I summon all My priests into My Eucharistic presence. They must learn that in My company is the fullness of joy. They must discover in the Sacrament of My love the sweetness and strength of My divine friendship."
These messages seem directed to the clergy, especially to priests, but one may very easily apply them to oneself also, in order to fully live out our call to holiness from the Second Vatican Council, in each of our own daily lives: "Therefore in the Church, everyone whether belonging to the hierarchy, or being cared for by it, is called to holiness, according to the saying of the Apostle:'For this is the will of God, your sanctification'(Thess.4:3)." (Ch.5, n.39, LUMEN GENTIUM)
With each meditation there are "lessons" on how to approach Him, Jesus, the Living and True God, and recognize the awesomeness of the God/Man, present in His Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity, in the Most Holy Eucharist. Only in adoration before Him will we finally understand what it means to "carry our cross daily" and to even embrace it:
"My way is one of gentleness, of mercy, and of compassion. I offer My Cross to souls, but I never impose it, and when a soul begins to say "Yes" to the sweet and terrible exigencies of My love, I fit My Cross to her shoulders and, then, help her to carry it step by step, increasing its weight only as that soul grows in love and in the fortitude that comes from the Holy Spirit.
"Whenever you come up against something that contradicts your plans or fails to meet your expectations, give that thing, that situation, that disappointment to Me. Entrust it to my Heart and, then, relinquish all worry over it.
"I am not distant from you nor am I removed from your life and all that makes up your days. Not a hair falls from your head without my Father permitting it. Make frequent acts of trust and abandonment. Let go of the things that you cling to most tightly. Come to me with empty hands. Hold on to nothing, not even to your own plans and desires for good things. If the things that you want for yourself are good, know, beyond any doubt, that the things I want for you are infinitely better.
"When you find something difficult, or beyond your strength, ask Me to do it in you or even to leave it undone as I see fit. There are things that you would want to do that are alien to my plans, and there are things that I would have you do that you, of yourself, would never think of doing.
"It is your attachment to doing what you want that impedes the rapid fulfillment of my perfect designs for you." …and He instructs us in the ways to love Him: "The practice of adoration is not difficult. It is a gentle abiding in My presence, a resting in the radiance of My Eucharistic Face, a closeness to My Eucharistic Heart. Words, though sometimes helpful, are not necessary, nor are thoughts. What I seek from one who would adore Me in spirit and in truth is a heart aflame with love, a heart content to abide in My presence, silent and still, engaged only in the act of loving Me and of receiving My love. Though this is not difficult, it is, all the same, My own gift to the soul who asks for it. Ask, then, for the gift of adoration.
"Adoration is a furnace and a forge. The soul called to a life of adoration must expect to suffer the intensity of the fiery furnace, and the reshaping of all that is misshapen in her in the forge of My Divine Will. For this to happen, it is enough that the soul offer herself to My love, and remain humble, peaceful, and quiet as I purify and transform her in My presence. If only souls knew the power to purify and to transform that emanates from My tabernacles!"
The Powerful Prayer of the Rosary Our Blessed Mother also reveals to this Benedictine Monk her love as a Mother, and tells him: "Give to me, then, all that you would offer to my Son and to His Father. It will be purified as gold in the furnace because I will press it to my Heart. Nothing impure can endure the flame of love that burns in my Heart. Only love remains. Give me your weaknesses, your past sins, your daily faults, and I will present to my Son only the love with which, in spite of all your weaknesses, you desire to love Him, and with Him, love the Father. I am your Mother."
When she appeared to the three children at Fatima, Our Blessed Lady asked them to tell the world to have a humble confidence in the power of the most holy Rosary, "You must recite the Rosary every day in honor of Our Lady of the Rosary to obtain peace for the world and the end of the war for only [Our Lady of the Rosary] can obtain this" (Fatima message, third Apparition, 13 July 1917).
Our Blessed Lord, Who desires very much that we love His Holy Mother, emphasizes this in In Sinu Jesu, and reminds us of those promises made at Fatima and elsewhere by Our Lady, and He councils us to heed her demands: "There is no problem or difficulty that cannot be solved or resolved by a faithful persevering recourse to My Mother's most holy Rosary. The Rosary is My Mother's gift to the poor and to the simple, to the little ones who alone are capable of hearing the Gospel in all its purity and of responding to it with a generous heart. It is to such as these — the childlike and the weak, the poor and the trusting — that the Rosary is given. It is to such as these that the Rosary belongs.
"There are no sufferings that cannot be borne peacefully, so long as a soul is praying the Rosary. Through the Rosary, all the grace and power of My mysteries passes through My Mother's Immaculate Heart into the hearts of the little ones who invoke her, repeating the angel's "Ave" over and over again. There are illnesses that can be cured through the Rosary. There are clouds of darkness and confusion that only the Rosary can disperse, and this because it is My Mother's favorite prayer, a prayer that originated in the heights of heaven and was carried to earth by My Archangel, a prayer echoed and amplified in the Church through the ages, a prayer loved by all My saints, a prayer of disarming power and of immense depth.
"There are those who find the Rosary difficult. The difficulty lies not in the Rosary but in the complexity of those who struggle to enter into its simplicity. Invite souls to the prayer of the Rosary; through it I will heal the sick of mind and body, through it I will give peace where there is conflict, through it I will make great saints out of great sinners, through it I will sanctify My priests, give joy to My consecrated ones, and raise up new vocations in abundance.
"Listen, then, to My Mother's plea in so many places. Listen to her, take her plea to heart, pray her Rosary and, for you as for her, My Father will do wondrous things (Our Lord speaking)."
What has made the deepest impression on me about this book, though, is that there is a message of such hope! And with that hope comes joy and peace, "the kind of peace that only [He] can give (Matt. 14:27)!" Given the diabolical disorientation that has occurred within the priesthood, as within the Church in these last few decades, Our Blessed Lord reiterates His promise that "the gates of Hell shall not prevail against [His Church] (Matt. 16:18)."
He tells the humble Benedictine Monk: "I am about to carry out the plan for the renewal of My priesthood that for so long I have held within My Heart. These days of shame and of darkness that have come upon My priests in so many countries are about to be changed into days of glory and of light. I am about to sanctify My priests by a new outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon them. They will be sanctified as were My Apostles on the morning of Pentecost. Their hearts will be set ablaze with the Divine Fire of Charity, and their zeal will know no bounds.
"They will assemble around My Immaculate Mother who will instruct them and, by her all-powerful intercession, obtain for them all the charisms necessary to prepare the world — this sleeping world — for My return in glory. I tell you this not to alarm you or to frighten anyone, but to give you cause for an immense hope and for pure spiritual joy.
"The renewal of My priests will be the beginning of the renewal of My Church, but it must begin, as it did at Pentecost, with an outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the men whom I have chosen to be My other selves in the world, to make present My Sacrifice, and to apply My Blood to the souls of poor sinners in need of forgiveness and healing. They will preach My Word in the power of Saint Peter on that Pentecost long ago and, at the sound of their voices, hearts will be opened and miracles of grace will abound."