Our Lady of Sorrows - Family Reflection Video
Today’s celebration of Our Lady of Sorrows is also the patronal feast day of the men of the Congregation of Holy Cross. This feast has its origins in the Middle- Ages. The memorial to the Sorrows of Mary was started by the Servite Friars in the 1600’s and in 1814 Pope Pius the VII extended the celebration to the whole Western Church after the Holy Father was freed from the sufferings he endured during captivity in France.
Preparing for this Mass, I learned that the Church names seven sorrows that Mary experienced: (1) Simeon’s prophecy at the presentation of Jesus in the temple, (2) the flight into Egypt, (3) the disappearance of the boy Jesus in Jerusalem, (4) the road to Calvary, (5) the crucifixion, (6) the removal from the cross, and (7) the entombment.
When we hear the word "sorrow" it’s important for us to understand that it doesn’t mean despair. For to experience sorrow means to suffer but not give up or give in.
One definition for sorrow is: The pain or distress experienced because of some adversity that is felt personally. The sorrow may be out of compassion for someone else. It goes on to say, essential to the notion of sorrow is that it refers to what has already happened, and its painful effects are still experienced - something that each one of us can relate to in our own way.
Today’s gospel from John focuses us upon the crucified Christ speaking to His Mother and then to the beloved disciple--who in a sense represents each of us.
In those moments, Jesus draws Mary, the beloved disciple, and all people of faith closer to His sacrificial and redemptive love - and unites us in Him and His Mother and our spiritual Mother, Mary.
In those last moments upon the Cross, Jesus knew incredible pain and suffering, and he conquered it. His Mother and our Blessed Mother looked upon her son and felt a crushing sorrow which she survived with the grace of God. Both Jesus’ and our Blessed Mother’s love for us is evidenced in this exchange. Their love and care shows us that that it whatever struggles, whatever pains we experience--can only be fully healed through faith, hope, and love—given to us from God.
May God bless you and your families and may we draw strength on this Feast Day of Our Lady of Sorrows through the example and intercession of Our Blessed Mother united with Jesus, her Son.
Father David's inspirational homily was recorded live this morning during Mass at the Father Peyton Center. Please view the video on our Facebook page. (You don't need a Facebook account to view.)
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About Father David Marcham
Reverend David S. Marcham is the Vice Postulator for the Cause of Venerable Patrick Peyton, and Director of the Father Peyton Guild, whose members pray for Father Peyton’s beatification and spread his message of the importance of Family Prayer. Prior to becoming a seminarian, Father David was a physical therapist and clinical instructor, serving hospital inpatients and outpatients throughout the greater Boston area for eleven years. In 1998 he heard the call to priesthood and was ordained in the Archdiocese of Boston in 2005. Father David grew up in Quincy, MA, and has fond memories of playing soccer, tennis and running track. You’re never without a friend when Father David is around, as he welcomes everyone into his circle with a smile on his face!