The Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows

Luke 2: 33-35
Heb 5:7-9/Ps 31:2-6,15-16,20

Behold this child is destined for the fall and rise of many in Israel, and to be a sign of contradiction, (while a sword will pierce your own soul) so that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed.
(Luke 2:34-35)

What was once a great mystery
Was that “sign of contradiction”;
But soon Christ’s Word revealed to me
That His cross was our salvation.

Malachi’s prophecy had finally come that day when Simeon and Anna entered the temple. “…suddenly the Lord for whom you long (for) will enter the sanctuary. The envoy of the covenant which you so greatly desire already comes, says Yahweh of hosts.” (Mal.3:1)

Reflection

Everyone who met Jesus fell, either into repentance or down to reality. He caused many to both fall, and then rise again. Simon Peter was the first when he witnessed the miraculous catch of fish and fell at Jesus’ feet, saying “Go away from me Lord, for I am a sinful man!” (Luke 5:8). Matthew came next when he left his post at the imperial revenue office. St. Paul had the biggest fall of all (from his horse) when he encountered the Spirit of Jesus on the way to Damascus. But as Simeon predicted, all of them rose again to become the best followers of Jesus in spreading His kingdom here on earth.

When we come into a closer relationship with God, He will reveal to us how sinful and unworthy we are of His beloved Son’s suffering and death on the cross. To fall down in humble penitence is an important process of our transformation, because, after all, we can never get to heaven on our own merits. Until we fall from the pride and prestige of this world, from the need to be self-assured and self-sufficient, from the folly of financial achievements and human glory, we will never learn to rise to the call of the cross, to be humble, to be servile, to wake up to the realization that we are nothing, and everything belongs to God alone. Let us always keep in mind the words of the Apostle Paul: “What do you have, that you weren’t given?” We who have acknowledged Jesus as King should live lives that reflect His character, especially His humility.

Today we commemorate the feast of our Blessed Mother Mary as Our Lady of Sorrows. She was given the privilege of being the mother of the Son of God. But with this high privilege also came a “sword which would pierce her heart,” as her Son would be tortured and killed on the cross. She received both a crown of joy and a cross of sorrow. But her joy was not diminished by her sorrow because she had faith and trust in God’s promise. The Lord gives this strange kind of joy which helps all His favored ones (the apostles and saints) bear any sorrow or pain.

Lord, thank You for Your supernatural love, which none of us on earth can ever hope to fathom; it fills us with gladness, and great expectation of things to come. Amen.

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