View all Novenas | September 6, 2022
Day 1 – Introduction
Day 1 – Introduction
“Those whom the Lord has ransomed will return and enter Zion singing, crowned with everlasting joy; They will meet with joy and gladness, sorrow and mourning will flee.” Isaiah 51:11
In today’s culture, many of us live projecting an image of perfection and happiness, as if we have it all together. The reality is that everyone struggles, everyone has their cross and no one has it all together. We attempt to live behind a façade, but we all know deep down the truth about our own brokenness and misery. Reflecting on the seven sorrows of Mary can be liberating. She suffered. She faced setbacks. She made mistakes. Mary had sorrow, but she is also the greatest saint in the history of humanity. She didn’t have a life without difficulties, nor did she run away from problems. She “kept all these things in her heart” (Lk 2:51) and through prayer found the purpose and meaning of all things.
To reflect on Mary’s sorrows is to peel back the mask that we wear, to drop the façade of perfection, and to open up our horizons to the deep truth that holiness doesn’t come from us holding it all together but from God holding us. His grace and mercy are the defining point of a truly Christian life.
We can try to hide our sorrows and pain, but they will eventually seep out. All the resentment, bitterness, unforgiveness, neglect, abuse and fear that we have experienced in our lives are the source of our sorrows, and they are not healed simply by the passing of time. Only by facing them as the Blessed Virgin Mary did will we be healed. By latching onto God’s grace and mercy, we can be freed. By knowing Jesus Christ as his mother does, we can know joy.
With each of Mary’s seven sorrows, we will look at a particular temptation which, if we succumb to it, may prevent us from experiencing God’s great mercy. We will reflect on a particular virtue exemplified by Mary through which we may allow the grace of God to see our sorrow as a path to freedom and joy.
- The Prophecy of Simeon
- The Flight into Egypt
- The Loss of Jesus in the Temple
- Mary Meets Jesus on the Way to Calvary
- Jesus Dies on the Cross
- Jesus is Pierced with a Lance and Lowered into Mary’s Arms
- Jesus is Buried in the Tomb
Questions to Ponder:
How have sorrows in my life helped me to turn more fully to God and rely on his grace?
What are some ways that I have recognized the redemptive value of my suffering?
O sorrowful Mother, I turn to you in total trust. You suffered the sharpest pains in life, watching your Son die upon the Cross, and yet you remained by Him to the end. Look with favor upon me, a poor sinner, and obtain for me from your Son all the graces I need to endure the sufferings God allows me to face.
Hail Mary, full of grace…
Jesus, I trust in You!