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September 17th, 2011

Mary, The Mystical Rose

Mary The Mystical Rose

Mary is the mother of the Church and she will remain so until her son returns in glory.

Mary is the mystical Rose. She lets Castilian Roses to bloom in winter. She is the Rose of Sharon. She is the enclosed garden and the sealed fountain. She is the mother of God. Why is Mary so unique? There is no other human being other than Mary who is so much united with the mysteries of Jesus in such a profound way.

Mary said “Yes” to the plan for human redemption. She carried God in her womb for nine months. Her Son is true man and true God. We all have 46 chromosomes and half comes from our father and half from our mother. Jesus is true man because of Mary. Jesus is true God because he was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit.

Mary, the virgin, gave birth to Jesus. She therefore brought God to earth. We have Jesus because of Mary. God called her the blessed woman full of graces. She endured the humiliation at Bethlehem, the flight to Egypt, and the poverty at Nazareth to bring up her son. She fed him, bathed him and clothed him. Jesus submitted to Mary, the human, for thirty years. He obeyed her in every thing.

Mary initiated the public ministry of Christ. It was not his time. He kept aside his heavenly plan in total obedience to his mother, and started his ministry earlier than scheduled at Cana. It was not his time but he broke the heavenly protocol at the request of Mary and turned water into wine. God often breaks protocols at the request of Mary. Mary is still his mother.

Mary suffered with Christ. When they flogged him, spat upon him and abused him, the mother took those shames in silence. She was at the foot of the cross. Peter fled. Thomas fled. Andrew fled. Mary stayed at the foot of the cross. She saw the death of her son. She accepted the whole humanity as her children at the foot of the cross. The Church was born again through Mary at the foot of the cross when Jesus said, “Behold your son, and behold your mother”. We are the children of Mary and Mary is our mother.

Mary saw the risen Christ and the ascending Christ. Mary received the Holy Spirit at the upper room on the day of Pentecost. She was an early evangelist with her adopted son John, the evangelist.

There is no human being in the whole history who is equivalent to Mary. She conceived God in her womb. She brought God to the world. She brought up God’s son by her toils. She inaugurated the public ministry of Christ. She suffered with Christ in his passion. She stood at the foot of the cross and saw the redemption of man kind unfolding in the sorrows of crucifixion.

She birthed the church at the foot of the cross when she accepted John as her son. She saw the promise of resurrection. She saw the arrival of her eternal spouse, the Holy Spirit upon the disciples. She approved the works of Peter.

Read the article Why Pray To Virgin Mary and enter your comments.

September 17th, 2011

Poem : Sorrowing Mother

Sorrowing Mother

At the cross her station keeping
stood the mournful Mother weeping,
close to Jesus to the last.

Through her heart, His sorrow sharing,
all His bitter anguish bearing
now at length the sword had passed.

Oh, how sad and sore distressed
was that Mother highly blessed,
of the sole-begotten One!

Christ above in torment hangs,
she beneath beholds the pangs
of her dying, glorious Son.

Is there one who would not weep,
‘whelmed in miseries so deep,
Christ’s dear Mother to behold?

Can the human heart refrain
from partaking in her pain,
in that Mother’s pain untold?

Bruised, derided, cursed, defiled,
she beheld her tender Child
All with scourges rent.

For the sins of His own nation,
saw Him hang in desolation,
Till His spirit forth He sent.

O sweet Mother! fount of love!
Touch my spirit from above,
make my heart with thine accord.

Make me feel as thou hast felt;
make my soul to glow and melt
with the love of Christ, my Lord.

Holy Mother! pierce me through,
in my heart each wound renew
of my Savior crucified.

Let me share with thee His pain,
who for all our sins was slain,
who for me in torments died.

Let me mingle tears with thee,
mourning Him who mourned for me,
all the days that I may live.

By the Cross with thee to stay,
there with thee to weep and pray,
is all I ask of thee to give.

Virgin of all virgins blest!,
Listen to my fond request:
let me share thy grief divine;

Let me, to my latest breath,
in my body bear the death
of that dying Son of thine.

Wounded with His every wound,
steep my soul till it hath swooned,
in His very Blood away;

Be to me, O Virgin, nigh,
lest in flames I burn and die,
in His awful Judgment Day.

Christ, when Thou shalt call me hence,
by Thy Mother my defense,
by Thy Cross my victory;

While my body here decays,
may my soul Thy goodness praise,
safe in paradise with Thee. Amen.

Read more on Our Lady of Sorrows

September 15th, 2011

Our Lady of Sorrows

Our Lady of Sorrows

Today, September 15, we have the feast of our lady of sorrows.

Devotion to the Seven Sorrows of Our Lady has its roots in Sacred Scripture and in Christian piety, which always associates the Blessed Mother with her suffering Son. Today’s feast was introduced by the Servites in order to intensify devotion to Our Lady’s Sorrows.

History of the feast of our lady of sorrows

This feast dates back to the 12th century. It was especially promoted by the Cistercians and the Servites, so much so that in the 14th and 15th centuries it was widely celebrated throughout the Catholic Church. In 1482 the feast was added to the Missal under the title of “Our Lady of Compassion.” Pope Benedict XIII added it to the Roman Calendar in 1727 on the Friday before Palm Sunday. In 1913, Pope Pius X fixed the date on September 15. The title “Our Lady of Sorrows” focuses on Mary’s intense suffering during the passion and death of Christ. “The Seven Dolors,” the title by which it was celebrated in the 17th century, referred to the seven swords that pierced the Heart of Mary. The feast is like an octave for the birthday of Our Lady on September 8th. — Excerpted from Our Lady of Sorrows by Fr. Paul Haffner (Inside the Vatican, September 2004)

About the feast

This feast is dedicated to the spiritual martyrdom of Mary, Mother of God, and her compassion with the sufferings of her Divine Son, Jesus. In her suffering as co-redeemer, she reminds us of the tremendous evil of sin and shows us the way of true repentance. May the numerous tears of the Mother of God be conducive to our salvation; with which tears Thou, O God, art able to wash away the sins of the whole world.

Seven sorrows of Mary

As Mary stood at the foot of the Cross on which Jesus hung, the sword of sorrow Simeon had foretold pierced her soul. Below are the seven sorrows of Mary:

1. The prophecy of Simeon (Luke 2:25-35)
2. The flight into Egypt (Matthew 2:13-15)
3. Loss of the Child Jesus for three days (Luke 2:41-50)
4. Mary meets Jesus on his way to Calvary (Luke 23:27-31; John 19:17)
5. Crucifixion and Death of Jesus (John 19:25-30)
6. The body of Jesus being taken from the Cross (Psalm 130; Luke 23:50-54; John 19:31-37)
7. The burial of Jesus (Isaiah 53:8; Luke 23:50-56; John 19:38-42; Mark 15:40-47)

Symbols

heart pierced with a sword;
heart pierced by seven swords;
winged heart pierced with a sword;
flowers: red rose, iris (meaning: “sword-lily”), cyclamen.

The Virgin Mary, who believed in the word of the Lord, did not lose her faith in God when she saw her Son rejected, abused and crucified. Rather she remained beside Jesus, suffering and praying, until the end. And she saw the radiant dawn of His Resurrection. Let us learn from her to witness to our faith with a life of humble service, ready to personally pay the price of staying faithful to the Gospel of love and truth, certain that nothing that we do will be lost. — Pope Benedict XVI, Angelus – September 13, 2009

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