Not known by many is the Feast we celebrate today, as we remember the Sorrows of Our Blessed Mother. There are 7 of them that we commemorate, and they all relate to her son Jesus. Here they are:
1.The Prophecy of Simeon over the Infant Jesus. (Gospel of Luke 2:34)I think too that Our Blessed Mother takes on as any mother does, the sorrows of all her children, and not just her first born. When Jesus hung on the cross dying, he commended her motherhood to John for us all, and the Catholic Church has adopted her as a special mother of the Church and therefor of us all.
2.The Flight into Egypt of the Holy Family. (Gospel of Matthew 2:13)
3.The Loss of the Child Jesus for Three Days. (Luke 2:43)
4.The Meeting of Jesus and Mary along the Way of the Cross. (Luke 23:26)
5.The Crucifixion, where Mary stands at the foot of the cross. (Gospel of John 19:25)
6.The Descent from the Cross, where Mary receives the dead body of Jesus in her arms. (Matthew 27:57)
7.The Burial of Jesus. (John 19:40)
As a good mother, I am certain that she weeps and intercedes for us in our trials and tribulations.
One of the antiphons today in the Lauds, said along with the Canticle from Daniel 3: 57-88, 56 is "Let us rejoice that we have been made sharers in Christ's passion." That is a difficult line to say and to mean. We are not like Christians of older days who would mortify their flesh with painful practices. But, we do share in Christ's passion as we offer up to him all that we are and all that we have.
Some of us, of course, are invited to offer more, like Father's Gruber and MacRae, where they have been imprisoned, either in an actual prison as Father MacRae, or hidden away in a monastery, and kept from those things he loves, in the case of Father Gruber.
As Catholics, we believe that Mother Mary has a special love for her priests, and they, in turn have a special love for her. So many of them are devoted to the Rosary, and to living a life of holiness as she did on earth, in service to God.
From the intercessions for this morning's Liturgy of the Hours, which were taken from the Common of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the response was "May your mother intercede for us, Lord."
One of the set prayers for which the above was the response, said: "Saviour of mankind, Your Mother stood at the foot of Your Cross, grant, through her intercession, that we might rejoice to share in Your Passion."
Both of these priests are sharing in His Passion, as they, like Him, were unjustly accused and lied about, and shunned after the lies.
Father Gruber had a profound statement that I put in a posting the other day from John Allen, as he said to John: "No man is just, except Jesus our Savior, and while I’m certainly not guilty of this crime, we all deserve any sufferings short of the fires of hell, simply for being a sinner on this earth.”
We do deserve any sufferings short of the fires of hell, but these sufferings unite us with Christ our Saviour into His Passion and Death. For without the passion and death, there could be no resurrection, and though His sacrifice was sufficient for us all, we are called still to join Him in his suffering, and Our Mother in her sorrows.
Lord, may Your Mother intercede for these two men of God, and for us all.