exuding drops of blood ... consolation beyond all agony!
Mary, Mater Dolorosa.
Today's is for Mary, Our Sorrowful Mother. I started marking this special day on the liturgical calendar when I lost my son Raphael in stillbirth. Our church has a little shrine to the Sorrowful Mother and every year I put a little plant or flower on the shrine and pray.
This year will be the 8th year since we lost our baby. Feelings aren't as tender, but it's easy to miss his presence. This would have been a first communion year, and that gives me a feeling of loss. When all the kids are busy or playing with other friends and Rosie is wandering around, there is another loss - the brother/companion who just isn't here.
A few years ago during a homily our priest said the most insightful things. He mentioned that just because someone is faithful or even chosen, does not mean that their life will be without hardship and pain. Mary's certainly wasn't. Father said we could chose to be used by the hardships that befall us, or we could chose to use those hardships for good. He also talked about how sometimes these difficulties draw us closer to God.
As the mother of a stillborn son that certainly was my experience. I did feel prayed for and loved when our baby died and I felt the need to draw myself closer to God in my sorrow. And the result of my experience has been useful a few times, in comforting other moms who have lost babies.
This prayer has much special meaning for me.
Mary, my mother, obtain for me, I beg you, the grace of a holy resignation. Obtain for me the grace to understand this trial which is so hard for me to bear. I know that God in his all-wise providence has seen that it is for the best. Yet it is hard for me to bear the grief I feel. I come too you,dear mother, comforter of the afflicted and constant aid of those who trust in you. I know that you can obtain for me the peace and resignation that I seek. I confide in you entirely in this my tribulation and sorrow. You know the meaning of a mother's love, and can understand the dept of my affliction. Be to me a tender and protecting mother. For now, dear Mother Mary, I feel more than ever the need of your motherly love and sweet consolation.
Mary sorrowing, Mary of all Christians, pray for us!
From a Mother's Manual
15 This is what the LORD says:
"A voice is heard in Ramah,
mourning and great weeping,
Rachel weeping for her children
and refusing to be comforted,
because her children are no more."
A wonderful idea for commemorating the day here!