OUR LADY OF SORROWS (MEMORIAL)
Behold, your mother.
Does it seem counterintuitive to celebrate the sorrows rather than the joys of our Blessed Mother? Yet there are good reasons to honor and venerate Mary under the title of Our Lady of Sorrows. Mary’s suffering shows us that she understands what we experience when we say yes to God and encounter suffering along the way.
When our child suffers, Mary understands. Her beloved son was betrayed by the very people he taught and ministered to, even as he freely offered himself for the forgiveness of our sins.
When our plans for the future are suddenly interrupted, Mary understands. Her marriage and family plans were upended by a call from heaven and a government census that resulted in her son’s birth in a stable.
When our family and friends don’t understand or approve of our longing to give our total yes to God, Mary understands. Her neighbors in Nazareth must have suspiciously wondered about her pregnancy. Mary experienced the sting of their rejection, even though she was cooperating with God’s plan for her life.
When we are placed in a new, unfamiliar place, Mary understands. She was forced to move, with her husband and newborn son, to Egypt, a place with different customs, unsure job prospects, and no support system. She had to rely on God’s provision in countless ways.
Mary shows us that faith, strength, and courage are possible even in the face of deep sorrow—even suffering that perhaps no one else understands. Just as she stood by Jesus as he hung on the cross, she stands by us in our sadness and pain.
“Behold, your mother” (John 19:27). Mary is not only Jesus’ mother; she is our mother, too. She wraps her arms around us, intercedes for us, and gives us consolation in our times of greatest need.
“Holy Mary, Our Lady of Sorrows, you never leave my side. Thank you for understanding and being with me through every trial.”
1 Timothy 1:1-2, 12-14
Psalm 16:1-2, 5, 7-8, 1