Our Lady of Sorrows
The Seven Sorrows (or Dolors) are events in the life of the Blessed Virgin Mary which are a popular devotion .The Mass today focuses on Mary’s compassion and what she suffered during the first Passiontide.
Entrance Antiphon: Lk 2: 34-35
Simeon said to Mary: Behold, this child is destined for the ruin and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign of contradiction; and your own soul a sword will pierce.
O God, who willed that, when your Son was lifted high on the Cross, his Mother should stand close by and share his suffering, grant that your Church, participating with the Virgin Mary in the Passion of Christ, may merit a share in his resurrection. Who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.
First reading: 1 Timothy 1:1-2,12-14
From Paul, apostle of Christ Jesus appointed by the command of God our saviour and of Christ Jesus our hope, to Timothy, true child of mine in the faith; wishing you grace, mercy and peace from God the Father and from Christ Jesus our Lord. I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has given me strength, and who judged me faithful enough to call me into his service even though I used to be a blasphemer and did all I could to injure and discredit the faith. Mercy, however, was shown me, because until I became a believer I had been acting in ignorance; and the grace of our Lord filled me with faith and with the love that is in Christ Jesus.
R/ You are my inheritance, O Lord.
Preserve me, God, I take refuge in you. I say to the Lord: ‘You are my God.’ O Lord, it is you who are my portion and cup; it is you yourself who are my prize.
I will bless the Lord who gives me counsel, who even at night directs my heart. I keep the Lord ever in my sight: since he is at my right hand, I shall stand firm.
You will show me the path of life, the fullness of joy in your presence, at your right hand happiness for ever.
Alleluia, alleluia! Happy is the Virgin Mary, who, without dying, won the palm of martyrdom beneath the cross of the Lord. Alleluia!
Gospel: John 19:25-27
Near the cross of Jesus stood his mother and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary of Magdala. Seeing his mother and the disciple he loved standing near her, Jesus said to his mother, “Woman, this is your son.” Then to the disciple he said, “This is your mother.” And from that moment the disciple made a place for her in his home.
Prayer over the Offerings
Receive, O merciful God, to the praise of your name the prayers and sacrificial offerings which we bring to you as we venerate the Blessed Virgin Mary, whom you graciously gave to us as a most devoted Mother when she stood by the Cross of Jesus. Who lives and reigns for ever and ever.
Communion Antiphon: 1 Pet 4: 13
Rejoice when you share in the sufferings of Christ, that you may also rejoice exultantly when his glory is revealed.
Prayer after Communion
Having received the Sacrament of eternal redemption, we humbly ask, O Lord, that, honouring how the Blessed Virgin Mary suffered with her Son, we may complete in ourselves for the Church’s sake what is lacking in the sufferings of Christ. Who lives and reigns for ever and ever.
Meditation Today’s Gospel reading focuses on the sacrifice of Jesus on the Cross – giving his mother to John, and John to his mother. This has been interpreted down through the years as John representing us, the Church, the Body of Christ. This means that Mary plays the same role of looking after us as she did after Jesus. It means that Jesus who gave us the beautiful sacrament of the Eucharist sees us as other Christs under the care of his mother. A mother never rejects her children, even if they are wayward, so I too can find my place under her mantle. Even at the moment of his death, Jesus’ heart is open to those who suffer. He recognizes the grieving of Mary and John and asks them to make space in their lives for one another. What may I learn from Mary and from John as Jesus invites me to live more closely with them? Jesus asked Mary and John to make room in their lives for new relationships of care; could it be that I sometimes receive the same invitation?