"Teach Souls to Love The Heart of My Mother
Pierced by The Very Sorrows Which Pierced
(Our Lord to
Petit, at Midnight Mass Dec. 25, 1909)
she hath wept in the night, and her tears are on her cheeks:
Behold, your Mother."
there is none to comfort her among all them
that were dear to her:
all her friends have despised her, and are
become her enemies.
"Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of
Pray for us who have recourse to
At the urging of His Eminence Cardinal
Granito di Belmonte, ex-Nuncio to Brussels, and zealous apostle of the
Sorrowful Heart of Mary, His Holiness Pope Benedict XV granted 100 days
indulgence on Sept. 28, 1915 for this invocation, and then enriched it
to 300 days just one year after his original sanction.
"The time is now ripe. I wish
mankind to turn to
The Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of
Let this prayer be uttered by every
Let this prayer dictated by My Love
as a supreme succor
be approved and indulgenced, no
and for a small portion of My flock,
but for the whole universe,
so that it may spread as a refreshing
and purifying balm
of reparation that will appease My
Our Lord to Berthe Petit (1870-1943)
The Church and Devotion to
The Sorrowful & Immaculate Heart of
"There is no
question here of introducing a new devotion, but rather of deepening our
understanding, and of giving greater force to thoughts long dear to our
hearts, and rooted in the history of our race. This is why we wish to
intensify our supplications to the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of
Mary - now especially when the circumstances of our time so urgently
never forget the title to our gratitude that Mary has won by Her
Pope Benedict XV:
On May 31, 1915, His Holiness Pope Benedict XV
wrote at the end of a letter addressed to His Eminence Cardinal
Venutelli, Dean of the Sacred College the following recommendation
addressed to the bishops of the world:
lift our prayers, ardently and frequently, more than ever, towards Him
in whose hands lie the destinies of nations, and let us all address
ourselves with confidence to the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary,
the most sweet Mother of Jesus and of us, so that by her powerful
intercession, she may obtain from her divine Son, the prompt end of the
war and a return to peace and tranquillity."
To what shall I compare
Or to what shall I liken thee, O daughter of
To what shall I equal thee, that I may
O virgin daughter Sion?
|The Seven Dolors of Mary
1. The Prophecy
2. The Flight
3. The Loss of
the Child Jesus
4. The Meeting of
Jesus and Mary on the Way of the Cross.
6. Jesus' body
Struck by a Lance, Taken Down from the Cross
7. The Burial of
|1. The Dark Prophecy
father and mother were amazed at what was said about him;
blessed them and said to Mary his mother,
child is destined for the fall and rise of many in Israel,
and to be a sign
that will be contradicted
(and you yourself
a sword will pierce)
so that the
thoughts of many hearts may be revealed."
prophetic words of Simeon, the first cruel sword has passed. Mary's
great joy is turned suddenly into great sorrow...as she plummets from
the heights to the depths.
well up in the beautiful eyes of the Gentlest of Mothers. The words of
the prophesy sink deep into her heart like a burning knife. Mary's tears
fall gently upon the tiny babe held securely in her arms. The tender
baby Jesus too, is visibly effected ~ drawing closer to his mother in
fear and trembling. Although horrified at the thought of what he must
endure to save sinners from Hell ~
their answer in
unison to the Father is,"yes." A complete and trustful surrender to the
Will of God.
Both Jesus and
his Immaculate Mother would endure this great sorrow ~ this great fear
for the rest of their lives...A living martyrdom. Every waking moment,
Mary lived with the dread and unbearable mental anguish of her beloved
Son's impending death...knowing not the hour.
Immaculate Heart of Mary, Pray for us."
|2. The Desperate
Flight of The Holy Family
(Matthew 3: 13-15)
Now when they had
departed, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and
said, "Rise, take the child and his mother, and flee to Egypt, and
remain there till I tell you; for Herod is about to search for the
child, to destroy him." And he rose and took the child and his mother by
night, and departed to Egypt, and remained there until the death of
Herod. This was to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophet, "Out
of Egypt have I called my son."
fulfilled what had been said through Jeremiah the prophet:
"A voice was
heard in Ramah, sobbing and loud lamentation;
for her children, and she would not be consoled,
since they were
Angelica once said that the Holy Innocents had in fact, given their
lives for God ~ like a shield ~ so that the Christ Child might live.
Immaculate Heart of Mary pray for us,
and all your
children yet unborn."
|3. The Child Jesus is
Lost to Mary and St. Joseph,
Who in great sorrow, search and mourn
for him for three long days.
parents went every year to Jerusalem, at the solemn day of the pasch,
and when he was twelve years old, they going up into Jerusalem,
according to the custom of the feast, and having fulfilled the days,
when they returned, the child Jesus remained in Jerusalem; and his
parents knew it not. And thinking that he was in the company, they came
a day's journey, and sought him among their kinsfolk and acquaintance.
And not finding him, they returned into Jerusalem, seeking him.
came to pass, that, after three days, they found him in the temple,
sitting in the midst of the doctors, hearing them, and asking them
questions. And all that heard him were astonished at his wisdom and his
answers. 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."
And he said to them: "How is it that you sought me? Did you not know,
that I must be about my father's business? And they understood not the
word that he spoke unto them. And he went down with them, and came to
Nazareth, and was subject to them. And his mother kept all these words
in her heart. And Jesus advanced in wisdom, and age, and grace with God
of Simeon is Mary and St. Joseph's greatest fear. This ever-present
dread is foremost in their minds as she and poor St. Joseph search
desperately for their lost son Jesus. The same fears that any parent
would have for their lost child must have indeed been keenly shared by
poor Mary and St. Joseph. "Where could he possibly be? Is he hungry or
thirsty? Is he cold? Is he alone or afraid? Is he in danger? Is he dead?
Is it my fault he is lost? Will we ever see our precious child again?
St. Joseph and Mary, in the pain of your broken hearts at the loss of
the Child Jesus for three days, have pity on the parents of all lost or
abducted children, comfort them, protect them
Precious Blood of Jesus, Save and Protect all your little lost children.
and bring the
children home to safety. May it please the Holy Will of God, in Jesus
Name we pray. Amen.'
'O Lord, that
you may ever gently beckon all your little lost sheep ~ that they may
ever find you waiting for them in the safety of Your Holy Catholic
Church, and in her Sacraments.'
"Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary, Pray for us."
|4. The Sorrowful
Meeting of Jesus and Mary
Along the Way of His Cross to His death at what
is called the Place of the Skull, In Hebrew, Golgotha. (John 19: 16-18)
And bearing his
own cross, he went forth to that place which is called Calvary, but in
What does the
anguished Mother witness as she is jostled by the riotous mob?
behold for the first time, a glimpse of the distant bent figure of her
Son, as he slowly rounds a corner, weighed down by a very large heavy
cross on his shoulder. At the same time, she sees the mass of cruel
thorns they have placed on his head. As he nears, she can see the ropes
that bind him around his neck and waist, and how they shove him, and
prod him along with the blunt end of spears, like a driven lamb to the
slaughter. Her ears are assaulted by the loud angry insults and
blasphemies they heap upon him. Jesus stumbles and falls ~ her arms
reach for him in reflex but he is too far away ~ as he lies there in the
filth and dust of the city street. This first fall, one of many before
His journey's end.
prodded, cursed, and fallen,
His whole Body bruised and
Jesus tripped and lay in pain.'
the loss of blood and pain suffered in the cruel scourging, suffering
terribly from the painful crown that pierces his skull and pricks his
eyes and ears at every movement ~ he can barely see for the blood that
stings his eyes. Only his tears relieve the stinging some as he blinks
His breathing is
fast and gasping, his pulse races. The soldiers manhandle him to his
feet ~ afraid he'll die before they can nail him to the cross ~ shove
him and yank him around by the ropes to revive him, he catches his
breath and grits his teeth as all his pain is renewed with the violent
on the dust He crumbled,
Flogged in Body He resembled
All our brothers poor and
He walks on ~
one, slow, painful, step at a time. Jesus strains with all his heart, to
bear the immense weight of the whole world on his shoulder. He is
nearer his mother now. She tearfully watches as he slowly, painfully,
lifts his head ~ and she gasps ...His once beautiful face ~ swollen and
bruised, covered in filth and blood and spittle! His thick dark hair
and beard matted with sweat and blood. Can you feel her anguish as
their tearful eyes meet, "...My son, My son!" You can hear her cry.
So many silent
swords of pain passed between them in that brief look. It was not for
this innocent creature that he must suffer. She alone ~ The Immaculate
Mother of the Word Incarnate. Despite himself ~ what pain Jesus felt to
see Mary's unbearable anguish. The soldiers shout and push the crowds
back, and He is stolen from view.
'Jesus met his
She who made the
Lord our Brother;
Now the sword her
heart has pierced.'
quickly and catches sight of him once more as he stumbles and falls
again. If only she could take his place ~ she gladly would.
fervent prayers are to the Father, offering herself in his stead.
To spare the life
of her Divine Son from the agony that yet lay ahead.
She prays for
someone come to the aid of her Son. The soldiers grab Simon the
Cyrenian, a large strong man coming in from the fields and force him to
carry the heavy cross behind Jesus.
stopped in hesitation,
Not foreseeing his proud station,
Called to bear the Cross of
Mother prays still more fervently, and a pious woman is moved by great
compassion for this poor wretched man condemned to die. Courageously,
she breaks through a startled line of soldiers to wipe his bloody face
with her veil.
trembling came the woman,
None but she would flaunt the
Moved by love beyond her fear.'
gently presses the veil to Jesus' face, she can feel it's features
beneath the cloth. Jesus again slowly, painfully raises his precious
head to thank Veronica with his eyes, his heart ~ and the gift of His
Sacred Image left on her veil ~ as a visible testament to her act of
kindness to this day.
forgot the face of her savior as he looked on her with love. Despite his
disturbing appearance ~ she is enraptured with love ~ and sorrow for
him. The moment is suspended in time ~ and the angry world disappears.
She will never be the same ~ as she has seen Heaven in his face.
The soldiers grab
her indignantly and shove her back into the crowd. Our Savior is lead
away to continue his slow, agonizing walk of death.
Immaculate Heart of Mary, Pray for us."
|5. The Crucifixion and
Death of Jesus
Mary Witnesses With the Greatest of
Her Dear Son's Cruel Torments and
Slow Death on the cross.
stood by the cross of Jesus, his mother, and his mother's sister, Mary
of Cleophas, and Mary Magdalen. When Jesus therefore had seen his mother
and the disciple standing whom he loved, he saith to his mother: "Woman,
behold thy son." After that, he saith to the disciple: "Behold thy
mother". And from that hour, the disciple took her to his own.
Jesus knowing that all things were now accomplished, that the scripture
might be fulfilled, said: "I thirst". Now there was a vessel set there
full of vinegar. And they, putting a sponge full of vinegar about
hyssop, put it to his mouth.
Rather they put
gall in my food,
and in my thirst
they gave me vinegar to drink.
therefore, when he had taken the vinegar, said: It is consummated. And
bowing his head,
he gave up the
'Stripped and jeered by his
Jesus stood in desolation,
Giving all He had to give.'
For just a
moment, place yourself at the foot of Jesus' Cross. The cruelest
violences, insults and indignities the Son of God was not spared! Turn,
and behold his poor mother standing there... hardly willing to breath
the air, dissolved in an ocean of tears as she watched him slowly die in
writhing agony! Her tortured heart pierced through with burning swords
of unimaginable pain and sorrow for her beloved Son... to the point of
death. If not for the grace of God, Mary surely would have died a
thousand deaths that day.
Mary had been
dreading this moment for more than 30 years since the Prophesy of
Simeon. Do you not think that every time she even looked at her tender
son ~ in all that time ~ it did not pain her to think of the terrible
death that awaited him?
the Sacred Hands and Feet of Jesus for just a moment. Think about Mary
who smothered them with kisses ~ as any tender mother would her sweet
baby. These same sacred hands used to heal and to bless ~ these same
precious feet used to bring the good news to the poor and the hopeless ~
she saw driven through with cruel nails, bloodied and pinned to a crude
the hands that blessed and cured us,
Pierced the feet that walked to
Walked the hill of Calvary.'
When Jesus saw
his mother and the disciple there whom he loved,
he said to his
mother, "Woman, behold, your son."
Then he said to
the disciple, "Behold, your mother."
And from that
hour the disciple took her into his home.
Can we see
Mary's suffering and not help but have compassion for her also? And in
imitation of the beloved apostle St. John, not want to take her into our
homes care for, comfort her... even as our own mother?
eternal, death defiant,
Bowed his head ~ the world was
Through his death came life
Immaculate Heart of Mary, Pray for us."
|6. Jesus Is Taken Down
From The Cross.
(Psalms 22: 15) (John 19: 31-37)
is taken down from the cross, His adorable body is struck by the lance
of a soldier. Blood and water issue forth from his side. The nails are
pulled from his hands and feet, and He is lowered down the cross on a
ladder. Jesus ~ all bloodied, bruised, torn and lifeless ~
is placed in his
poor mother's arms. The Crown of thorns having been removed, Mary can
now see with horror ~ the deep puncture wounds left in His forehead by
the long sharp thorns;
Mary of Agreda, The Mystical City of God, Bk. 6. chap. 20):
upon His sacred head a cap made of plaited thorns to serve Him as a
crown. This cap was woven of thorn branches and in such a manner that
many of the hard and sharp thorns would penetrate into the skull, some
of them to the ears and others to the eyes. Hence one of the greatest
tortures suffered by the Lord was that of the crown of thorns..."
Mother beholds the holes in Jesus' Hands and Feet that bore the weight
of His body as he hung on crude nails; the terrible wound in His side.
His once beautiful face, now swollen and bruised from the reed used by
the Romans to strike him viciously about the head after crowning him
with thorns and veiling his face.
Sorrowful Mother ponders with deepest emotions all the multiple cruel
and mortal wounds her Divine Son willingly endured for humanity. But
mixed with her unspeakable pain and grief is a certain motherly pride in
her Son ~ as she knows of the countless souls he has saved by this
greatest act of His unselfish love. Does she tenderly kiss his adorable
head, and wash his Face with her tears ~ or does she have any tears left
stricken, Mary, Mother
In your arms was
placed our Brother,
"Full of grace"
now filled with grief.'
Immaculate Heart of Mary, Pray for us."
|7. Jesus is Buried in
condemned, he was taken away, and who would have thought any more of his
destiny? When he was cut off from the land of the living, and smitten
for the sin of his people.
A grave was
assigned him among the wicked and a burial place with evildoers, Though
he had done no wrong nor spoken any falsehood.
And after these
things, Joseph of Arimathea (because he was a disciple of Jesus, but
secretly for fear of the Jews) besought Pilate that he might take away
the body of Jesus. And Pilate gave leave. He came therefore, and took
away the body of Jesus. And Nicodemus also came, (he who at the first
came to Jesus by night), bringing a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about an
hundred pound weight.
therefore the body of Jesus, and bound it in linen cloths, with the
spices, as the manner of the Jews is to bury. Now there was in the place
where he was crucified, a garden; and in the garden a new sepulchre,
wherein no man yet had been laid. There, therefore, because of the
parasceve of the Jews, they laid Jesus, because the sepulchre was nigh
19: 38-42) (Matthew 27:57-61) (Mark 15:42-47) (Luke 23: 50-56)
Jesus body is
wrapped in a cloth, and he is buried quickly and without ceremony in a
borrowed sinners’ tomb. His sweet mournful mother bids farewell to the
precious body of her son ~ all bloodied and torn for us. She gently
kisses his wounded hands and lays them back over his body. She takes
her place with the other women as they roll the heavy stone back over
the entrance to the tomb.
She watches as
the stone falls in place with a final great thud. There are no birds
singing, the world is silent. And silently, one by one they slowly,
The pain in
her soul is so great that surely if not for the grace of God, she would
have died of grief a thousand times over that day. O Poor Sweet Holy
apostle St. John urges the Blessed Virgin Mary to leave with him ~ but
she is frozen to the spot, unable to move. Placing his arm gently
around her shoulders ~ choking back the tears St. John speaks softly the
Virgin Mary raising her tearful eyes to meet John's realizes her duty
towards her beloved Son Jesus now lies with his children ~ begotten at
his death. Mary then became for us the adopted mother of us all. Jesus'
final gift to us before his dying breath.
beloved apostle of her Divine Son leads the stricken mother away from
the scene to his home.
poor wretched soul, O Sweet Virgin Mary, to receive the body of thy
precious Divine Son in Holy Communion. Prepare my heart as thou thyself
prepared to conceive Jesus in thy womb. Adorn my heart with all the
merits of thy tender love and compassion and good works.
"That I may
conceive Jesus in my heart, as thou conceived Him in thy womb. May I be
made worthy to bear the fruit of Christ."
receive Thee into my heart in Holy Communion, O Jesus, make it a fit
abiding place for Thy adorable Body. Amen.'
"Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary, Pray for us."
|Let Us Pray:
'Let intercession be made for us, we
beseech You, O Lord Jesus Christ, now and at the hour of our death,
before the Throne of Thy Mercy, by the Blessed Virgin Mary, Your Mother,
whose most holy soul was pierced by a sword of sorrow in the hour of
your bitter Passion. Through You, O Jesus Christ, Saviour of the world,
Who with the Father and the Holy Ghost lives and reigns world without
The Seven Promises:
These are the
SEVEN PROMISES that God grants to those who honor The Blessed Virgin
Mother daily by saying seven Hail Mary's while contemplating her tears
and sorrows during her life. This devotion was passed on to us by St.
1. "I will grant Peace
to their families.
2. "They will be
enlightened about the Divine Mysteries."
3. "I will console them
in their pains and I will accompany them in their work."
4. "I will give them as
much as they ask for as long as it does not oppose the adorable will of
my Divine Son or the sanctification of their souls."
5. "I will defend them
in their spiritual battles with the infernal enemy and I will protect
them at every instant of their lives."
6. "I will visibly help
them at the moment of their death, they will see the face of their
7. "I have obtained
(This Grace) from my Divine Son, that those who propagate this devotion
to my tears and dolors, will be taken directly from this earthly life to
eternal happiness since all their sins will be forgiven and my Son will
be their eternal consolation and joy."
Honoring the Seven Dolors of Mary
(Approved by Pope Pius VII in 1815)
V. O God, come to my assistance;
R. O Lord, make haste to help me.
V. Glory be to the Father, etc.
R. As it was in the beginning, etc.
1. I grieve for you, O Mary most
sorrowful, in affliction of your tender heart at the prophecy of the
holy and aged Simeon. O dearest Mother, by your heart so afflicted,
implore for me the virtue of humility and the Gift of the holy Fear
2. I grieve for you, O Mary most
sorrowful, in the anguish of your most affectionate heart during the
flight into Egypt and your sojourn there. O dearest Mother, by your
anxious heart so troubled, obtain for me the virtue of generosity,
especially toward the poor, and the Gift of Piety.
3. I grieve for you, O Mary most
sorrowful, in those anxieties which tried your troubled heart at the
loss of your beloved Child Jesus. O dearest Mother, by your
exeedingly troubled heart implore for me the virtue of chastity and
the Gift of Knowledge.
4. I grieve for you, O Mary most
sorrowful, on account of the horror with which your mother-heart was
stricken when meeting Jesus bearing the Cross. O dearest Mother, by
your exeedingly oppressed heart implore for me the virtue of
patience and the Gift of Fortitude.
5. I grieve for you, O Mary most
sorrowful, on account of that martyrdom which tortured your generous
heart at the death-agony of Jesus. O dearest Mother, through this
thy martyred heart, implore for me the virtue of temperance and the
Gift of Counsel.
6. I grieve for you, O Mary most
sorrowful, in the wounding of your tender heart, by the thrust of
the lance that opened the side of Jesus and pierced His most
adorable Heart. O dearest Mother, by this vicarious transfixion of
thy own heart, implore for me the virtue of brotherly love and the
Gift of Understanding.
7. I grieve for you, O Mary most
sorrowful, on account of that agony which racked your most loving
heart at the burial of Jesus. O dearest Mother, through this
extreme torment that filled thy burdened heart, obtain for me the
virtue of zeal and the Gift of Wisdom.
V. Sorrowful and Immaculate
Heart of Mary, pray for us!
R. That we may be made worthy of the
promises of Christ.
Let Us Pray:
'Let intercession be made for us,
we beseech You, O Lord Jesus Christ, now and at the hour of our
death, before the throne of Your mercy, by the Blessed Virgin Mary,
Your Mother, whose most holy soul was pierced by a sword of sorrow
in the hour of Your bitter Passion. Through You, O Jesus Christ,
Saviour of the world, who with the Father and the Holy Ghost lives
and reigns world without end. Amen.'
Prayer in Honor of the Sorrows of
The Blessed Virgin Mary
holy and afflicted Virgin, Queen of Martyrs, you stood beneath the
cross, witnessing the agony of your dying Son. Look with a mother's
tenderness and pity on me, who kneel before you.
your sorrows and I place my requests with filial confidence in the
sanctuary of your wounded heart.
them, I beseech you, on my behalf to Jesus Christ, through the
merits of His own most sacred passion and death, together with your
sufferings at the foot of the cross. Through the united efficacy of
granting of my petition.
shall I have recourse in my wants and miseries if not to you, Mother
of Mercy? You have drunk so deeply of the chalice of your Son,
compassionate our sorrows.
your soul was pierced by a sword of sorrow at the sight
passion of your Divine Son. Intercede for me and obtain for me from
Jesus (mention request) if it be for His honor and glory and for my
|* The Novena finds it's
origin in ancient Church tradition. A Novena is simply any prayer
said faithfully for a period of dedicated time. Generally it is said
for nine consecutive days, nine Sundays, Fridays or Saturdays, or
even nine hours in a row. Novenas have traditionally been known to
be very powerful ~ used since the time of the Apostles when most
notably, they and the other disciples prayed and fasted for nine
days prior to receiving the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the day
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