Father Rick’s Two-Minute Homily for The Memorial of Our Lady of Sorrows
September 15, 2023, John 19:33-35
Stand by My Side
The most difficult of all funerals is when a mother or father buries their child. Who can comprehend the sorrow a parent is experiencing when they see their flesh lying in a coffin? When I have sat with them, they always say, “Why couldn’t it have been me”?
Today, we celebrate our Mother of Sorrows. Being immaculate from all sin did not spare her standing under the cross of her divine Son as she drank from the same chalice of His suffering.
The Son she once laid in a manger, the Son she carried in her arms, and who suckled at her breast is raised on a cross hung by nails. No part of His body, her body, was spared from the wounds of our sins. Her spirit was crucified as much as His adorable body; her heart was pierced with the lance that pierced His.
The two feasts, The Exaltation of the Cross and Our Mother of Sorrows, teach us that pain and suffering are part of our human experience. If there were another way to overcome the atrocities of our sinful nature, Jesus and Mary would have been spared.
They teach us not to run from our sufferings or medicate them with distractions as if they don’t exist. “Let this chalice pass me by, but let not my will but yours be done.” Pray to unite your sufferings with the Passion of our Lord Jesus. The coldest heart is converted, and the most atrocious of sins is forgiven through suffering born out of love for the good of another.
Ask your Mother to stand by your side in intense darkness and despair as she did with Jesus. Her mediation and presence are cause for outstanding courage and comfort. Pray to her often throughout the day.
Mother of Sorrows, Pray for us.
Ignite the Fire
Father Rick Pilger, I. C.