Hello everyone, what a beautiful day God has made for us. Out here in Southeastern Wisconsin, Winter’s snow is nearly melted – though the brisk winds have not yet dissipated. The cloudless blue sky towers over us like the mighty dome of a medieval cathedral. As I look up at the sky’s expanse, I see my Blessed Mother’s veil stretched over us, her children, shielding us from all of the fury that the Devil is hurling at us. The strong wind rustling through the trees (as well as knocking over a few dead ones) reminds me of the Spirit of God, the Word gone forth from His mouth and not returning void but “achieving the end for which [He] sent it (Isaiah 55:11).” The bright burning Sun mirrors the glory of it’s Maker and the birds sing forth His praises. What a perfect day for reflection. What a beautiful day God has made for us.
On this Saturday of the Second Week of Lent let us delve further in to the suffering of our Blessed Mother and, using the words of the Stabat Mater Dolorosa, contemplate Christ’s Passion through Mary’s eyes.
“Is there one who would not weep,
whelmed in miseries so deep,
Christ’s dear mother to behold?”
“Can the human heart refrain
from partaking in her pain,
in that mother’s pain untold?”
– Stabat Mater Dolorosa Stanzas 5 & 6
These two paragraphs seem to almost interrogate us. They seem to ask us “is your heart compassionate enough to stand with your Sorrowful Mother and express contrition for your sins.” As we all know, Christ came down to earth and suffered and died for our sins. Every time we knowingly turned away from God, every time we “compromised our relationship with Him,” He endured another blow of the lash, another wad of spittle in His face, another obscene jeer. Mary was sinless and from the moment of her conception to the moment her earthly life ended, she lived in a state of perfect unblemished purity not known to man since the Great Fall. Nothing she did added anything to Our Lord’s Passion. Yet in spite of her sinless purity, Mary is the one who weeps the most over Our Lord’s Agony. We, not she, ought be remorsefully standing beneath the cross of Our Lord, but how often does it happen that we go so far as to live our lives as though He never died for us. How often do we fail to see Christ in our neighbor and alleviate His suffering? How often do we come out of the confessional with no resolve of firm purpose of amendment?
This Lent, let us strive to enter more earnestly into the Passion of Our Lord and partake more deeply in the untold pain of our Blessed Mother. Let us strive for the most sincere contrition and firm purpose of amendment our fallen nature will cede. Let us together stand under the Cross and with our Mother Mary implore our Lord – “Have mercy on us and on the whole world.”