Hallowed be Thy Name

The Holy Name of Jesus

Feast Day: 3rd January

Devotion to the Holy Name of Jesus is a Franciscan devotion and its most prominent, champion is St. Bernardine of Siena, who preached Missions and Retreats all over Italy to promote it in the fifteenth century. Here is just a sample of how he preached about the Holy Name of Jesus …

“The name of Jesus is the foundation of our faith and makes us children of God. Glorious Name! Beautiful Name! Name that tells of love and excellence. Through You we have forgiveness of our sins, victory over our enemies, healing in sickness, strength and joy as we suffer the trials of life.”

A name symbolises a person. Can there be any greater person that Jesus? So His name must be the greatest. His name was revealed by the Angel before His birth, a name which means Saviour.

How sad that of all names, His is the name that is most often abused, on football terraces, on stage, screen and television, in writings. It is particularly sad to say that it is in Catholic countries the name of Jesus is not respected any better than in mine. St Paul tells us that every knee should bow at the name of Jesus, showing that the holy name of Jesus demands our respect. Whenever we hear His name used irreverently, it is like thrusting a dagger through our heart, and we should be quick to make an act of love and reparation to the name of Jesus. It is interesting to note that when Jesus taught us the Our Father, He made the first petition the hallowing of God's name. Obviously Jesus knew the little respect there would be for His name in some quarters and He hoped that by making it the first petition believers would give the names of God extra reverence.

The name of Jesus is our greatest weapon against the Devil, for it is the name above all names that he detests. The very name of Jesus can be recited as a prayer and an act of love. It can give us strength in the face of temptation and release countless souls from Purgatory. It is the name Jesus taught that can work wonders. “Ask the Father anything in My name and it will be given you.”

Dear Jesus may Your name be often on our lips in prayer and carried in our hearts with love.