Memorial of Our Lady of Sorrows – September 15
Feast: September, 15
Ave Mater Dolorosa
Mary, Mother of Sorrows
Litany of the Virgin Mary of Sorrows
Litany of the Seven Sorrows of Our Blessed Lady
heart pierced with a sword;
heart pierced by seven swords;
winged heart pierced with a sword;
flowers: red rose, iris (meaning: “sword-lily”), cyclamen.
People named: Dolores, Dolais, Deloris, Dolorita, Maria Dolorosa, Pia, and Pieta.
There are two such days:
* Friday before Palm Sunday (the feast was first celebrated in the 15th Century);
* third Sunday in September (this was first celebrated in the 17th Century).
The Memorial of Our Lady of Sorrows is tied to an event in the life of her Son. On September 14, we celebrate the instrument of Christ’s victory over death; and the next day, we remember the suffering of Mary as she stood at the foot of the Cross and witnessed the torture and death of her Son. We are also reminded of Simeon’s words to Mary (Luke 2:34-35) at the Presentation of the Lord—that a sword would pierce her soul.
These feast are dedicated to the spiritual martyrdom of Mary, Mother of God, and her compassion with the sufferings of her Divine Son, Jesus. In her suffering as co-redeemer, she reminds us of the tremendous evil of sin and shows us the way of true repentance. May the numerous tears of the Mother of God be conducive to our salvation; with which tears Thou, O God, art able to wash away the sins of the whole world.
As Mary stood at the foot of the Cross on which Jesus hung, the sword of sorrow Simeon had foretold pierced her soul. Below are the Seven Sorrows of Mary:
- The prophecy of Simeon (Luke 2:25-35)
- The flight into Egypt (Matthew 2:13-15)
- Loss of the Child Jesus for three days (Luke 2:41-50)
- Mary meets Jesus on his way to Calvary (Luke 23:27-31; John 19:17)
- Crucifixion and Death of Jesus (John 19:25-30)
- The body of Jesus being taken from the Cross (Psalm 130; Luke 23:50-54; John 19:31-37)
- The burial of Jesus (Isaiah 53:8; Luke 23:50-56; John 19:38-42; Mark 15:40-47)
Through these prayers for September (the month dedicated to Our Lady of Sorrows), we can unite ourselves to Mary in her sorrow, in the hope that we will one day also share her joy in the triumph of her Son.