The Heart of Jesus In the Spirituality of Vincent de Paul and Louise de Marillac


Former superior general Robert Maloney examines what the heart of Jesus meant to Vincent de Paul and Louise de Marillac. Vincent prayed that the Congregation would have the heart of Jesus, or the zeal, to bring God’s love to the poor. The missionaries were also to exercise gentleness and humility, the qualities Jesus attributed to his heart in Matthew 11:29. For Louise, this heart meant “charity that was both affective and effective.” She created many paintings of Jesus’s heart, some of which are described in the article with accompanying images. The historical development of devotion to the heart of Jesus, in which Francis de Sales played a role, is explained. Maloney explores five meanings Jesus’s heart has for us. It “heightens our awareness of the limitless love of God.” It calls us to be gentle and humble, makes us aware of our limitations, and helps us find wisdom and practice discernment. Finally, it encourages us to imitate Jesus’s love, which is “expansive” and “affective and effective.”

“The Heart of Jesus in the Spirituality of Vincent de Paul and Louise de Marillac” is an article published in the Vincentian Heritage Journal, Volume 32, Issue 1, Article 8 available at: