On the Passion of the Blessed Virgin.
God desired that the holy Virgin should be at the foot of the cross, and, by the sacrifice of her only Son, cooperate in our redemption by offering to the Almighty Father that which was most precious and dear to her to repair thereby the fault of Eve who caused our loss; to increase the grief of her Son by her presence; to bear part in his sorrows; to drink of his chalice; to become the Queen of martyrs of whom her Son was the King; to be as he was, crowned with opprobriums and ignominies; to receive all the predestined who were given to her in the person of the beloved disciple and to be declared their mother by these words: "Woman, behold thy son. Son, behold thy mother."
Mary endured all that Jesus suffered. The sword that entered his sacred side pierced her afflicted soul. The wounds that disfigured his flesh filled hers with suffering inconceivable. The stripes that had lacerated him were imprinted in her heart.
The martyrs suffered in their bodies, Mary suffered in her soul. The martyrs suffered in their criminal flesh, Mary suffered in the innocent flesh of her Son. The hearts of the martyrs were filled with joy, and the heart of Mary with desolation. Love diminished the pangs of the martyrs; love increased the pangs of Mary. Can she not truly say: There is no grief comparable to mine?
Resolution: I will console the most Sorrowful Virgin by offering alms in her honor today.
Prayer: Oh sweet and merciful Jesus, couldst thou not have spared thy tender and sorrowful Mother the pain of seeing thee suffer and die? What had she done that she must take part in thy sacrifice, and witness the agony that she could neither relieve nor soothe? No greater pain could have been inflicted on her, than to be obliged to stand by and behold her only Son expiring in such cruel torments. There could have been no greater grief for thee than to die in the presence of thy desolate and afflicted Mother. Grant, my beloved Jesus, that I never again cause thee or thy Mother pain by future sins. Forgive my past sins, for I repent of them that caused so much grief and suffering. And do thou, O my Mother, never turn away from me, for without thee I am lost. But now, I live only for Jesus and Mary.
By a Member of the Society of Jesus, edited and amended by J. Scott Bailey, C.Ss.R.