Mater Dolorosa, Mother of Sorrows

A blessed memorial of Our Lady of Sorrows to all, a feast begun in the 1233 – in the youth of that greatest of centuries – with the founding in Florence of the ‘Servite’ Order, when seven young men left the world, banded together in community to follow a life of prayer, charity and devotion to the Blessed Mother. They now comprise friars (priests and brothers), sisters, contemplative nuns, and lay associates, found throughout the world.   The Servite rosary is like the ‘regular’ Rosary, but is said by praying one Our Father and seven Hail Mary’s on each of Our Lady’s Seven Sorrows, or ‘Dolors’:

The Prophecy of Simeon. (Luke 2:34–35)

The escape and Flight into Egypt, Matthew, 2:13)

The Loss of the Child Jesus in the Temple of Jerusalem. (Luke 2:43–45)

The Meeting of Mary and Jesus on the Via Dolorosa.

The Crucifixion of Jesus on Mount Calvary. (John 19:25)

The Piercing of the Side of Jesus, and His Descent from the Cross. (Matthew 27:57–59)

The Burial of Jesus by Joseph of Arimathea. (John 19:40–42)

And our sorrowful world could use the intercession of Our Lady right now, in the midst of our collective civilizational self-loathing and destruction. As Mark Steyn put it, we must summon the courage to speak out – to individuals, not just to the ethereal web – to resist – again, in ways that are concrete and may affect our own ‘person’.

On a hopeful note, I recommend a listen to Pergolesi’s Stabat Mater, to which we will link in a separate post…

Mater Dolorosa, ora pro nobis!