The title for this series of reflections is based on the words of the prophet Isaiah [53:5] promising the healing of Israel; words which Peter echoed, referring to Christ, in his first letter, “By his wounds, you were healed.” [1 P 2:21-25].
Peter’s joyful proclamation may harken back to his remorse for having denied the Lord on that fateful Holy Thursday night. But, when Peter confessed his heartfelt love for Christ on meeting him after the Resurrection, the Lord forgave him, lifted him up with His mercy, and gave him the mission for the ages: “Feed my lambs, feed my sheep!” [Jn 21:17]. Peter understood that the gift of God’s super-abundant love and infinite mercy had been poured out for humanity through the open wounds of Christ on Calvary, and so in these reflections we, too, will ponder the love, mercy and forgiveness that flow through the Sacred Wounds of Christ.
Because there will be many reflections to follow, they are organized in three major sub-headings: 1) the Sorrowful Wounds of Christ which he endured on Good Friday, 2) the devotion to these merciful Wounds which has found its expression in a devotion to the Sacred Heart, and more recently in the Chaplet of Divine Mercy, and 3) the Glorious Wounds as they are retained in the body of the Risen Lord [cf. Jn 20] and which gave rise to his apostolic mandate that we forgive one another.
We offer these meditations, conducted in the style of a directed retreat, in the hope that they will serve as a spiritual guide throughout the year. We hope they will encourage you to see that the circumstances of everyday life provide us with an opportunity to lift up our hearts in hope in God’s infinite Mercy, made manifest in the healing Sacred Stigmata of the Resurrected Christ, our Lord and Savior.
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Rev. Joseph Charles Henchey, CSS, with Lisa Fortini-Campbell, Ph.D.
Rev. Joseph Charles Henchey, CSS, STD was born in Woburn, Massachusetts, USA, not far from Boston, on June 2, 1930. He entered the Congregation of the Sacred Stigmata on January 6, 1946, and was ordained a Stigmatine Priest in Rome, Italy, on July 1, 1956.
Father Henchey received a Doctorate in Sacred Theology from the Pontifical University of Saint Thomas Aquinas, the Angelicum, in Rome, in 1973. He served in Rome teaching at the Pontifical University for over 20 years, and also as General Councilor of the Stigmatine Congregation [1970-1976 and 1988-1990]. Following this, he taught several years at Holy Apostles Seminary in Cromwell, CT.
In 1996, the North American Episcopal Conference appointed Father Henchey to the Pontifical North American College in Rome as an Assistant Spiritual Director. Father Henchey held this position until 2002, when he was then appointed to the same position at Pope St. John XXIII National Seminary in Weston, MA.
In the fall of 2006, he was appointed to Mundelein Seminary, near Chicago, IL, as occupant of the Paluch Chair of Theology. He passed from this life in April, 2021. See a memorial article entitled “4 Seismic Lessons I Learned from Father Joseph Henchey, Jesus’ ‘Holy Henchman’” by Fr. Roger Landry.
Lisa Fortini-Campbell, PhD, served on the faculty of the Medill School of Journalism and the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University near Chicago for 25 years before her retirement in 2018. Her teaching focused on motivational psychology and communications theory and she taught a wide variety of courses to both graduate degree students and executives at the university and in corporate settings around the world.
Lisa is a mid-life convert to the Catholic faith and now that she is retired from her university teaching, she is redirecting her work as an educator to encouraging fellow Christians in their faith. She is a frequent speaker at retreats, conferences and parish missions and has been a long-serving faculty member in the Ongoing Pastoral Formation program sponsored jointly by the Kellogg School of Management and Mundelein Seminary. In 2013, she was invited by the late Cardinal Francis George to address the priests of the Archdiocese on the New Evangelization and also served as a keynote speaker at the 2015 Catechetical Conference of the Archdiocese speaking after Cardinal Blase Cupich.
Lisa met Fr. Henchey during her conversion to Catholicism, and he has served as her Spiritual Director since 2009.