Memorial of Our Lady of Sorrows

“If anyone does not wish to have Mary Immaculate for his Mother, he will not have Christ for his Brother.” – St Maximilian Kolbe

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 dolors or seven sorrows of Mary, which were foretold by the Priest Simeon who proclaimed to Mary.

  1. The Prophecy of Simeon. Luke 2:34-35
  2. The escape and Flight into Egypt. Matthew 2:13
  3. The Loss of the Child Jesus in the Temple of Jerusalem. Luke 2:43-45
  4. The Meeting of Mary and Jesus on the Via Dolorosa.
  5. The Crucifixion of Jesus on Mount Calvary. John 19:25
  6. The Piercing of the Side of Jesus with a spear, and His Descent from the Cross. Matthew 27:57-59
  7. The Burial of Jesus by Joseph of Arimathea. John 19:40-42

History of the Memorial of Our Lady of Sorrows

The Devotion to Our Lady of Sorrows grew in popularity in the 12th century in the Middle Ages, also thanks to the constitution in 1233 of the Order of the Servants of Mary. By the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, the feast and devotion were widespread throughout the Church. In 1667 the Servites obtained official approval for the celebration of the “Seven Sorrows of Mary”, a number based on as many episodes narrated in the Gospels  

Interestingly, in 1482, the feast was officially placed in the Roman Missal under the title of Our Lady of Compassion, highlighting the great love our Blessed Mother displayed in suffering with her Son. The word compassion derives from the Latin roots cum and patior which means to suffer with.

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