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Table of contents

M ary knows, that on the previous night, her Son has been betrayed by one of his Disciples, that is, by one that Jesus had numbered among his intimate friends; she herself had often given him proofs of her maternal affection. After a cruel Agony, her Son has been manacled as a malefactor, and led by armed men to Caiphas, His worst enemy. Thence, they have dragged Him before the Roman Governor, whose sanction the Chief Priests and the Scribes must have before they can put Jesus to death.

Mary is in Jerusalem; Magdalene, and the other holy women, the friends of Jesus, are with her; but they cannot prevent her from hearing the loud shouts of the people, and if they could, how is such a heart as hers to be slow in its forebodings? The report spreads rapidly through the City that the Roman Governor is being urged to sentence Jesus to be crucified.

Whilst the entire populace is on the move towards Calvary, shouting out their blasphemous insults at her Jesus, will His Mother keep away, she that bore Him in her womb, and fed Him at her breast? Shall His enemies be eager to glut their eyes with the cruel sight, and His own Mother be afraid to be near Him?

T he air resounded with the yells of the mob. Joseph of Arimathia, the noble counsellor, was not there, neither was the learned Nicodemus; they kept at home, grieving over what was done. The crowd that went before and after the Divine Victim was made up of wretches without hearts, saving only a few who were seen to weep as they went along; they were women; Jesus saw them, and spoke to them.

And if these women, from mere sentiments of veneration, or, at most, of gratitude, thus testified their compassion, would Mary do less? Our motive for insisting so much upon this point, is that we may show our detestation of that school of modern rationalism, which, regardless of the instincts of a mother's heart and of all tradition, has dared to call in question the Meeting of Jesus and Mary on the way to Calvary.

These systematic contradicters are too prudent to deny that Mary was present when Jesus was crucified; the Gospel is too explicit, Mary stood near the Cross St. John, xix.

Our Lady of Sorrows

What a heartless insult to the love of the incomparable Mother. N o, Mary, who is, by excellence, the Valiant Woman, Prov. And who could describe her anguish and her love, as her eye met that of her Son tottering under his heavy load?

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Who could tell the affection, and the resignation, of the look He gave her in return? Who could depict the eager and respectful tenderness wherewith Magdalene and the other holy women grouped around this Mother, as she followed her Jesus up Calvary, there to see Him crucified and die?

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J esus and Mary have reached the summit of the hill, that is to be the Altar of the holiest and cruelest Sacrifice: but the divine decree permits not the Mother as yet to approach her Son. When the Victim is ready, then She that is to offer him shall come forward. Meanwhile, they nail her Jesus to the Cross; and each blow of the hammer was a wound to Mary's heart. When, at last, she is permitted to approach, accompanied by the Beloved Disciple, who has made amends for his cowardly flight, and the disconsolate Magdalene and the other holy women, what unutterable anguish must have filled the soul of this Mother, when, raising up her eyes, she sees the mangled Body of her Son, stretched upon the Cross, with his face all covered with blood, and his head wreathed with a crown of thorns!

H ere, then, is this King of Israel, of whom the Angel had told her such glorious things in his prophecy! Here is that Son of hers, whom she has loved both as her God and as the fruit of her own womb! And who are they that have reduced Him to this pitiable state? Men, for whose sakes, rather than for her own, she conceived him, gave him birth, and nourished him! If that Divine Justice, which He has taken upon Himself to appease, would be satisfied with what He has already suffered! M ary, then, is at the foot of the Cross, there to witness the death of her Son.

He is soon to be separated from her. In three hours' time, all that will be left her of this beloved Jesus will be a lifeless Body, wounded from head to foot. Our words are too cold for such a scene as this: let us listen to those of St. Bernard, which the Church has inserted in her Matins of this Feast. Could any sword have made thee smart so much as that word which pierced thy heart, reaching unto the division of the soul and the spirit: 'Woman! John, for Jesus! How must not thy most loving heart have been pierced with the sound of these words, when even ours, that are hard as stone and steel, break down as we think of them!

Let him alone be surprised, who has forgotten that St. Paul counts it as one of the greatest sins of the Gentiles, that they were without affection.

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Who could say that of Mary? God forbid it be said of us, the servants of Mary! Sermon On the Twelve Stars. Her maternal joys of Bethlehem and Nazareth are all gone; they make her present sorrow the bitterer: she was the Mother of a God, and men have taken Him from her! Her last and fondest look at her Jesus, her own dearest Jesus, tells her that He is suffering a burning thirst, and she cannot give Him to drink!

His eyes grow dim; His head droops; all is consummated! M ary cannot leave the Cross; love brought her thither; love keeps her there, whatever may happen!

Our Lady of Sorrows

A soldier advances near that hallowed spot; she sees him lift up his spear, and thrust it through the breast of the sacred Corpse. Bernard, "that thrust is through thy soul, O Blessed Mother! It could but open His side, but it pierced thy very soul. She watches them as they take it down from the Cross; and when, at last, the friends of Jesus, with all the respect due to both Mother and Son, enable her to embrace it, she raises it upon her lap, and He that once lay upon her knees receiving the homage of the Eastern Kings, now lays there cold, mangled, bleeding, dead!

And as she looks upon the wounds of this divine Victim, she gives them the highest honour in the power of creatures, she kisses them, she bathes them with her tears, she adores them, but oh! T he hour is far advanced; and before sunset, He, Jesus, the author of life, must be buried. The Mother puts the whole vehemence of her love into a last kiss, and oppressed with a bitterness great as is the sea Lament, i.

The sepulchre is closed; and Mary, accompanied by John, her adopted son, and Magdalene, and the holy women, and the two disciples that have presided over the Burial, returns sorrowing to the deicide City. N ow, in all this, there is another mystery besides that of Mary's sufferings. Her Dolors at the Foot of the Cross include and imply a truth, which we must not pass by, or we shall not understand the full beauty of today's Feast. Why would God have her assist in person at such a scene as this of Calvary?

Why was not she, as well as Joseph, taken out of this world before this terrible day of Jesus' Death? Because God had assigned her a great office for that day, and it was to be under the Tree of the Cross that she, the second Eve, was to discharge her office.

Novena for one who has died

As the heavenly Father had waited for her consent before He sent His Son into the world; so, likewise, He called for her obedience and devotedness, when the hour came for that Son to be offered up in sacrifice for the world's Redemption. Was not Jesus hers? Augustine R.


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Jerome R. All you holy bishops and confessors R. Mary Magdalene R. Barbara R. All holy virgins and widows R. All you saints of God R. Be merciful R. Graciously hear us, O Lord From all evil R. We beseech You hear us You who freely saves Your elect R. We beseech You hear us That you would be pleased to have mercy on those of whom no special remembrance is made on earth R.

We beseech You hear us That you would be pleased to fulfill all their desires R.


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We beseech You hear us That you would be pleased to receive them into the company of the blessed R. We beseech You hear us King of Majesty R. We beseech You hear us Son of God R. We beseech You hear us Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world R. Christ, graciously hear us Lord, Have mercy R. Christ have mercy From the gates of hell R. And let my cry come to You. O God, whose nature is ever to have mercy and to spare, we humbly beseech You on behalf of Your servant, N.

Absolve, O Lord, the soul of You servant, N. O God, the Creator and Redeemer of all the faithful, grant N. Novena for one who has died. On the beads of the rosary for the Our Father, say the following Oh Most Merciful Jesus, look down with eyes of pity on the faithful souls for whom You suffered and died on the Cross. On the beads of the Hail Mary, say the following 1. From the gates of hell V. Before submitting your e-mail address, please make sure to acquaint yourself with these documents. Historical park is divided into non-intervention, buffer and recreational zones. The city has already greenlighted the plan, which includes more space for cyclists and pedestrians.