‘It’s just taking the love you already have for Jesus in your heart and going one step further . . .’
By Emily Booker
Jesus is King! All Saints Parish in Knoxville made a public proclamation of this truth June 30 as the parish participated in the Enthronement to the Sacred Heart of Jesus.
The Enthronement to the Sacred Heart of Jesus is a public proclamation that Jesus is king and head of a parish, household, school, or business. The All Saints community prepared for the enthronement through a three-day period of mission and prayers.
“It’s just taking the love you already have for Jesus in your heart and going one step further in the faith journey of publicly proclaiming him as king,” said Lisa Morris, president of the Sacred Heart Apostolate.
The Sacred Heart Apostolate, located in Knoxville, is a global movement for promoting the Enthronement of the Sacred Heart of Jesus as a way to renew communities by centering families on the love of God incarnated in the Sacred Heart of Christ. Giannine Morris, a facilitator from the apostolate, helped with the mission at All Saints Church. Father Pontian Kiyimba, a parish mission team, the Knights of Columbus, and youth prayer leaders all helped to make the mission a success. Around 200 people attended every night at All Saints.
There were Spanish interpreters so that both the Anglo and Hispanic communities could participate together. In the narthex was a map with stickers indicating those around the world praying for the success of All Saints’ mission.
“Jesus transcends all boundaries,” Lisa Morris said. “We are one in His heart. Seeing the Anglo and Spanish communities come together has been beautiful.”
Each night of the three-night mission included children’s involvement, personal testimonies, a homily, catechesis on the enthronement, and prayer, but each followed a different theme. First was “Jesus is alive and needed in the world now more than ever.” Father Kiyimba led the children in singing “He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands,” and instructed the children to bless their parents. Father Kiyimba gave a homily focusing on the love of Jesus and the importance of family prayer.
On night two, the theme was “Healing of relationships, and forgiveness will enable us to open our hearts and homes to Jesus.” Father Kiyimba preached on the understanding of the Sacred Heart and on reconciliation. The Knights of Columbus Honor Guard brought forward a cross for veneration, and five priests were available for the sacrament of reconciliation.
“As people were coming up to venerate the cross, it was so beautiful and so powerful. You could just see the emotion or the love of the Lord and that forgiveness and healing,” Lisa Morris said.
The theme for night three, held on the solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, was “Building a Civilization of Love.” The evening included a procession of the Blessed Sacrament around the church while people held up family photos they had brought. For Lisa Morris, this encapsulated the core of enthronement: Jesus and family.
“The basis of the enthronement is eucharistic… linking that domestic Church to the worldwide Church, and the Eucharist being the basis of all,” she said.
“The week was phenomenal,” said Giannine Morris. “It was just such a grace to see the outpouring of the Holy Spirit in the parish.”
After the triduum of preparation for the enthronement ceremony came the enthronement ceremony itself, held during the 11:45 a.m. Mass on June 30.
Father Doug Owens, pastor of All Saints Parish, led the enthronement ceremony.
“Jesus is your lord, and He rules through His heart. He desires to be enthroned as king and lord of your hearts and of your parish as your brother and friend. He longs to share your everyday life, your joys as well as your sorrows…” he said.
“Yes, the Father loves you, Jesus loves you, the Holy Spirit loves you. What have you to fear? His wounded heart is the sign and pledge of His merciful love. His heart is open to receive you.”
Then Father Owens blessed the image of the Sacred Heart of Jesus with holy water and proclaimed, “I now enthrone Jesus as king, lord, and friend of All Saints Parish!”
Parishioners knelt as Father Owens recited the act of consecration to the Sacred Heart.
“Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, king of love and king of truth, today it is my privilege, as shepherd of the flock You have entrusted in my care, to consecrate to Your loving Heart this parish—its clergy, its religious, its lay ministers, its musicians, its teachers, its families, and its youth,” he said.
“Look after all your loved ones in All Saints Parish, especially in all they do—in this parish, in their homes, in their workplaces, and in their community. Help all of us be Good Samaritans in time of need. Bless all our undertakings and guide us in all our gatherings.
“In a special way, I consecrate to Your merciful Heart, Good Shepherd, all sinners who have wandered from their Father’s house. May all of them, through the motherly intercession of Mary, refuge of sinners, return to You, so that there may be but flock and one shepherd.”
Father Owens then led parishioners to pray an act of consecration to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.
After the end of Mass, a procession of the image of the Sacred Heart and statue of the Blessed Mother went from the sanctuary to the parish hall, where the holy objects, along with the certificate of the enthronement, will be placed.
“When one does [enthronement] either in your family or a school or wherever, you want to pick a prominent place where this image will be displayed, so that people who come into your home will see that and the covenant right next to it,” said Lisa Morris. “It speaks a word without you saying anything. It’s like, you know who’s in charge here. So it’s a beautiful, beautiful evangelization.”
“Every enthronement ceremony is different, just like every parish is different, and I am always blown over by the impact it has on the community and on the individual heart,” said Giannine Morris.
Parishioners celebrated the enthronement with a reception in the parish hall.
Zulay Navarro-Pickering, an All Saints parishioner, worked on the parish mission team, helping bring people in and sign them up for home enthronements as well.
“All the members of the parish, we did it together. It’s been an awesome mission, and I hope that everybody in their houses does the enthronement as well,” she said.
She said she went through a home enthronement five years ago, and she’s experienced a lot of blessings from it.
“There are many changes. Sometimes I feel that they are coincidences, but then it’s like, this is not coincidence; this is the blessing of the Lord.”
“You know, God won’t be outdone in generosity,” said Lisa Morris. “You give a little, and he just pours out the graces. It’s a beautiful thing. And half the time people don’t even recognize or know what they’re getting into, but with just the mere assent, the yes, God comes in in a way that’s miraculous.”
Father Owens was pleased with the participation and devotion from the parish to the enthronement mission.
“I think it [enthronement] makes a significant increase in awareness of the importance of Jesus’ Sacred Heart and our devotion to Him, and I think it’s not just all the things that are promised but also just bringing people together to realize that this is a real thing, it’s not just something that’s symbolic,” he said. “The Church was founded on the blood and water pouring from Jesus’ side, and sometimes we might lose sight of that, so it’s good to have a good ole Catholic revival every once in a while.”
The Sacred Heart Apostolate’s office is at 813 S. Northshore Drive, Suite 201D, in Knoxville, 37919, next to the Chancery and the Cathedral of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus. The organization’s web address is sacredheartapostolate.com.