Sunday, September 17, 2017

Feast of the Sorrowful Mother

With special permission from the Vatican,  the Sisters of the Sorrowful Mother celebrate their congregational patronal feast day, the feast of the Sorrowful Mother, on the Sunday following the feast of the Sorrowful Mother, September 15th.

As I reflected upon Mary standing beneath the cross, my heart felt pierced by Mary standing their watching her beloved son die an agonizing death.  As Jesus walked up the hill to Calvary to be crucified, as He was scourged and crowned with thorns and covered with blood and wounds, as He died an agonizing death on the cross, Mary, too, was tortured as His mother, as any mother would have been to watch their beloved child, in similar circumstances, put to death!  And as He was dying, Jesus gives His Mother to us, saying to the beloved disciple standing with Mary: "Son, behold your Mother" and "Mother, behold your son."  Mary is our Mother, as she is the Mother of the Son of God made flesh. We are her daughters and sons, as is Jesus her son and our brother.

Mary stands by us in our sufferings, as she stood with Jesus.  She stands by every person in the process of dying physically or dying psychologically to selfishness, greed, envy, anger, hatred and other evils that may grip our souls.

Mary, Mother of Sorrows, pray for us, for all humankind, especially those in war-torn countries, in brothels against their wills, in the sex trade, those coerced in labor camps or forced into the drug industry. Mary, Mother of Sorrows, pray for your children who have abandoned their faith and walked away from your Son, as did those to whom He said: "Amen, amen I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink of His blood  [Holy Communion or the Sacrament of the Eucharist], you do not have life within you. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him on the last day. For my flesh is true food, and my blood is true drink.  Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me and I in him....This is the bread that came down from heaven" (John 6: 53-58).  It is that Living Bread, the Son of God, Jesus, who dwells in every Eucharist and in the Tabernacles in our Catholic Churches. It is that reason that Catholics reverence the Eucharist and receive it at every Liturgy!

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