Sermon preached by Rev. Robert Brucciani at the Servi Domini Orphanage, India on 15th September 2007.
The Seven Sorrows
My dear Sisters,
No natural bond between two human beings is as strong as the bond between a mother and child, but this bond is nothing when compared to the strength of a supernatural bond between a soul and God.
In Mary, both human and divine bonds were the strongest possible bonds of their nature. They were the measure, the exemplary cause, of all other human and divine bonds.
Natural Bond with BVM
We know from scripture and tradition that the Christ was Mary’s son too:
- His flesh was of her flesh,
- His features were her features (humour, smile, eyes, hair
- Even His acquired natural virtue was of her virtue; she taught her Son virtue explicitly and by example.
Supernatural Bond with the Blessed Virgin Mary
When Jesus questioned the Pharisees in Mt 22v41-46, He said,
And the Pharisees being gathered together, Jesus asked them, saying: What think you of Christ? Whose son is he? They say to him: David's. He saith to them: How then doth David in spirit call him Lord, saying: The Lord said to my Lord: sit on my right hand, until I make thy enemies thy footstool? If David then call him Lord, how is he his son? And no man was able to answer him a word: neither durst any man from that day forth ask him any more questions.
Jesus confounded the Pharisees by His use of the scriptures, but, were they able to penetrate into the hearts of men, He might have pointed to His mother and said the Christ is Mary’s son, for she was so infused with the Divine Life (Hail full of grace) as to be worthy to conceive, carry and bring into the world a Divine Son. She was so infused with the Divine Life that she radiated His Life, she radiated Him all around.
The mother of Jesus obeyed the greatest commandment in the most perfect manner. She loved God so completely that
- her will was indistinguishable from God’s will, her Son’s will.
- Her desires were his desires.
- Her joys were His joys.
And, as is the proof of true love, his sorrows were her sorrows; His pain was her pain. His martyrdom was her martyrdom.
Yes, Mary was a martyr, she is the Queen of Martyrs. On the 15th September the Church celebrates the victory that was the martyrdom of the Blessed Virgin Mary: The Feast of the Seven Sorrows of the Blessed Virgin Mary. The feast has its origin in the principal devotion of the Servite order to the seven sorrows of Our Lady (1239). These sorrows are as follows:
- at the prophecy of Simeon; Lk 2:35. And thy own soul a sword shall pierce, that, out of many hearts thoughts may be revealed.
- at the flight into Egypt;
- having lost the Holy Child at Jerusalem; Lk 2:48. And seeing him, they wondered. And his mother said to him: Son, why hast thou done so to us? Behold thy father and I have sought thee sorrowing.
- meeting Jesus on his way to Calvary;
- standing at the foot of the Cross; Jn 19:26. When Jesus therefore had seen his mother and the disciple standing whom he loved, he saith to his mother: Woman, behold thy son.
- Jesus being taken from the Cross;
- at the burial of Christ
Meditate upon the feast that it might help us discover the depths of God’s goodness in giving us Mary as an example. Meditate upon the feast of union so that we might realise that when we are afflicted, my dear brethren, there is no other intercessor before the throne of God who has suffered as Mary has suffered. There is no other intercessor who has felt the pain of physical suffering through moral suffering as Mary. There is no better recourse than to confide in Our Blessed Mother. She can understand best our suffering, she who has suffered most.
Let us pray, therefore, that we might love as she loved; that we might love to the point of becoming so infused with the Divine Life, that if some were to ask “What think you of Christ; whose brother is he? We would be able answer quite simply: “He is mine”.