Our Lady of Sorrows
Our Lady had many great joys as the mother of Jesus, but she had much to suffer, too. Her great love for her divine Son caused Mary to suffer when she saw Jesus treated cruelly by his enemies. Mary is the queen of martyrs because she went through spiritual torments greater than the bodily agonies of the martyrs. Her heart was like an altar when on Calvary she offered up her beloved Jesus to save us. What a terrible suffering it was for so loving a mother to see her Son die on the cross.
There are seven times of great suffering in Mary's life. The first was when she took Baby Jesus to the temple. There the prophet Simeon told her that a sword of suffering would pierce her heart. This would be when Jesus would be put to death. Her second sorrow was when she and St. Joseph had to flee to Egypt with Jesus. Herod's soldiers were trying to kill him. The third suffering came when Mary searched three days in Jerusalem for Jesus. She finally found him in the temple. Our Lady's fourth sorrow was when Jesus was whipped and crowned with thorns. Her fifth great pain was caused by his being lifted on the cross, where he died after three hours of agony. Mary's sixth sorrow was the moment when Our Lord's sacred body was placed in her arms. And her seventh suffering came when he was buried in the tomb.
Mary did not pity herself or complain because she had to suffer so much during her life. Instead, she offered her sorrows to God for our sakes. She is our Mother. Because she loves us dearly, she was happy to suffer that we might some day share her joy with Jesus in heaven.
How do I respond to suffering? What can the Mother of Jesus teach me about suffering?