24th Week in Ordinary Time –
1st Reading: 1Cor 15:1-11
I am reminding you, brothers and sisters, of the Gospel I preached to you, which you indeed received and in which you also stand. Through it you are also being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you, unless you believed in vain. For I handed on to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures; that he was buried; that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures; that he appeared to Cephas, then to the Twelve. After that, he appeared to more than five hundred brothers at once, most of whom are still living, though some have fallen asleep. After that he appeared to James, then to all the Apostles. Last of all, as to one born abnormally, he appeared to me. For I am the least of the Apostles, not fit to be called an Apostle, because I persecuted the Church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace to me has not been ineffective. Indeed, I have toiled harder than all of them; not I, however, but the grace of God that is with me. Therefore, whether it be I or they, so we preach and so you believed.
Gospel John 19:25-2
Near the cross of Jesus stood his mother, his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw his mother there, and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to her, “Woman,[a] here is your son,” and to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” From that time on, this disciple took her into his home.
MARY STOOD AT THE FOOT OF THE CROSS: Jesus is sorrowful about the people he is addressing. He scolds them, you have ears but you do not want to hear or learn. These people blame Jesus calling him a glutton and a drunkard, because he associates with sinners. God speaks to us through different people and so we should not ignore anyone. We need to listen attentively to the message from God. God can use anyone. As we celebrate the memorial of Our Lady of Sorrows, let us see a mother who is full of compassion to his suffering son and to us. She expresses the love of Jesus to us as she stands at the foot of the cross. The sword of sorrow which Simeon foretold, pierces her soul. As Jesus suffers on the cross, so does Mary.
SORROWFUL LADY: The title, Our Lady of Sorrows, given to our Blessed Mother focuses on her intense suffering and grief during the passion and death of our Lord. Traditionally, this suffering was not limited to the passion and death event; rather, it comprised the seven sorrows of Mary (Luke 2:34-35). In all, the prophesy of Simeon that a sword would pierce our Blessed Mother’s heart was fulfilled in these events. For this reason, Mary is sometimes depicted with her heart exposed and with seven swords piercing it. More importantly, each new suffering was received with the courage, love, and trust that echoed her fiat, let it be done unto me according to Thy word. Therefore, as we honor our Blessed Mother, our Lady of Sorrows, we honor her as the faithful disciple and exemplar of faith. Looking to the example of Mary, may we too unite our sufferings to our Lord, facing them with courage, love, and trust.