Friday, March 26, 2010

The Compassion of the Blessed Virgin.

Last year's posts.

"Mary, 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 lifeles* 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. " O Blessed Mother ! "a sword of sorrow pierced thy soul, and we may "well call thee more than Martyr, for the intensity " of thy compassion surpassed all that a bodily passion "could produce. 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 ! behold thy son !' What an ex" change!—John, for Jesus! th e servant, for the Lord! "the disciple, for the Master! the son of Zebedee, "for the Son of God! a mere man, for the very God! " 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 ! Ah ! my Brethren, be not "surprised when you are told that Mary was a " Martyr in her soul. 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. Who could say that of Mary ? " God forbid it be said of us, the servants of Mary!"

Amidst the shouts and insults vociferated by the enemies of Jesus, Mary's quick ear has heard these words, which tell her, that the only son she is henceforth to have on earth is one of adoption. 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 !"

-Dom Gueranguer, The Liturgical Year.

The rest.

(Aside, that's my favorite painting of Our Lady of Sorrows. Someday, I'm going to find a hard copy of it to frame and put in my room.)

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