READINGS for 2007-09-15
Memorial of Our Lady of Sorrows
THE UNPROTECTED CHILD
But even though He was God’s Son... – Hebrew 5:8
The talk show audience couldn’t believe it. They were watching an interview of two female celebrities and their families. One celebrity was a pop singer; the other, an heiress to a billion-dollar business. The singer was born and raised in a typical rural neighborhood; the heiress grew up in a completely opposite environment.
The audience was reacting because they had just found out that when these celebrities were children, the singer never learned to make her own bed, while the heiress—who had a whole army of servants at her disposal—was required to make her bed every day. The reason? The singer’s mom thought her daughter should concentrate on her singing career and had better things to do than carry out chores. On the other hand, the mother of the heiress made sure that her daughter had responsibilities around the house. Quite unsurprisingly, the singer grew up spoiled and clueless about work.
Jesus—the Son of GOD—was not in any way protected from life’s blows. Since birth, He had always experienced inconvenience but throughout His life, carried Himself with grace despite knowing that His life would end in even greater suffering. Now that’s character. Anna dG.
Have you fully accepted the sacrifices you must endure?
Teach me how to learn from my suffering.
Christ continues to intercede for us as does Mary. Mary as our intercessor places our needs before God and entreats Him to intervene in our lives to draw us to Himself. Mary cannot save anyone any more than you or I can save anyone from their sins. Jesus is the one mediator of salvation. It is through him that our sins are forgiven. The only type of mediation possible to a created being like Mary or you or me is that of witnessing to the effects of the Gospel in our lives. In this, the witness of Mary’s life is the most powerful.
7 In the days when he was in the flesh, he offered prayers and supplications with loud cries and tears to the one who was able to save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverence. 8 Son though he was, he learned obedience from what he suffered; 9 and when he was made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him.
P S A L M
Psalm 31:2, 3, 3-4, 5-6, 15-16, 20
R: Save me, O Lord, in your kindness.
1  In you, O LORD, I take refuge; let me never be put to shame. In your justice rescue me, 2  incline your ear to me, make haste to deliver me! (R) Be my rock of refuge, a stronghold to give me safety. 3  You are my rock and my fortress; for your name’s sake you will lead and guide me. (R) 4  You will free me from the snare they set for me, for you are my refuge. 5  Into your hands I commend my spirit; you will redeem me, O LORD, O faithful God. (R) 14  But my trust is in you, O LORD; I say, “You are my God.” 15  In your hands is my destiny; rescue me from the clutches of my enemies and my persecutors. (R) 19  How great is the goodness, O LORD, which you have in store for those who fear you, and which, toward those who take refuge in you, you show in the sight of the children of men. (R)
G O S P E L
John 19:25-27 or Luke 2:33-35
Each of us should follow the example of John and make a home in our hearts for Mary. This is not for the benefit of Mary but for our own good. With Mary close by, we will always be aware of a living example of discipleship and we will receive the encouragement and comfort that a mother always gives to her children. Discipleship is all about growing in relationship with Jesus, and who better to make Him known to us than His mother?
25 Standing by the cross of Jesus were his mother and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary of Magdala. 26 When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple there whom he loved, he said to his mother, “Woman, behold, your son.” 27 Then he said to the disciple, “Behold, your mother.” And from that hour the disciple took her into his home.
think: Discipleship is all about growing in relationship with Jesus, and who better to make Him known to us than His mother?
Thank You Lord for: ____________________________________
READ THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR Joel 1-3
SORROWS BECOME JOYS
I am my mother’s joy. Or, at least, I want to believe I really am. But I am certain that I am the cause of my mother’s sorrows too. If I had the power, I would give her only joys, no sorrows. But whether I cause her joys or sorrows, her love for me remains unconditional.
The Blessed Virgin Mary had her sorrows too on account of her Son. Jesus did not cause her affliction though. Her inexhaustible love for her Son, Jesus, made her participate in His sufferings. Our sins crucified the Lord; thus, piercing her heart. The Gospel today tells us where the Blessed Mother was when her Son accomplished the final act of our redemption: at the foot of the cross. She who was saved even before being conceived (Immaculate Conception) participates in our salvation (Co-Redemptrix) by suffering with our Savior. At the Annunciation, she became the mother of the Redeemer. On Good Friday she became the mother of the redeemed. It almost sounds sacrilegious to say that we celebrate today the sorrows of the Blessed Mother. But there are three reasons why:
First, to thank the Lord for giving her to us despite His foreknowledge that we would cause His mother even more sorrows through our sins. Second, to thank her for loving Jesus so much so that her love for Him overflows to us. Her tremendous love for Jesus gives her the capacity to love each of us unconditionally. Her love for Jesus became a treasury of grace for us. Third, to remember that we are always called to unite our selves with the Lord. There are many reasons for our sorrows but only those that we suffer on account of our love for Jesus are worth enduring. Only those, when united with the sufferings of the Lord, are truly redemptive. Those sorrows likewise give us the capacity to suffer for others whom the Lord loves. This is an essential element of Christian discipleship We are not called to suffer only. We are called to suffer ONLY WITH Jesus. Through Him, with Him and in Him, even sorrows become joys. Fr. Bobby T.
REFLECTION QUESTION: I am not called to suffer only; I am called to suffer only with Jesus.
Lord Jesus, crucified for me, let me stand with Your mother beneath Your cross. Let me share in her sorrows and partake in her joys as well. Help me follow her example of uniting her self always with You in joys and in sorrows. When my sojourn in this valley of tears comes to its end, may Mary, our mother, assist me and welcome me from this life to the next. Amen.
St. Aprus, bishop, pray for us.
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