This blog contains regular postings relating to the Traditional Latin Liturgy of the Roman Catholic Church. It includes regular commentary on the saints days and the liturgical cycle, with brief background and extracts from the liturgy both in Latin and English. Much of the material has been extracted from the 'St Andrew's Daily Missal', Dom Gueranger's 'Liturgical Year', or similar sources.

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Thursday, 15 September 2016

15th September, The Seven Sorrows of the Blessed Virgin Mary

The Seven Sorrows of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Mary stood at the foot of the Cross where Jesus was hanging (Introit, Gradual, Alleluia, Sequence, Gospel) and, as Simeon had prophesied (Collect), a sword of sorrow pierced her soul (Secret). Powerless, " she saw her sweet child desolate in the anguish of death, and she received His last breath" (Sequence). The compassion which her maternal heart felt at the foot of the Cross obtained for her as its reward the palm of martyrdom without death (Communion).

This feast was celebrated with great solemnity by the Servites in the seventeenth century. In 1817 it was extended by Pius VII to the whole Church so as to recall the sufferings she had undergone in the person of her exiled and captive head, delivered by the protection of the Blessed Virgin. Just as the first feast of the Sorrows of Mary, in Passiontide, shows us how she had her share in the sacrifice of Jesus, the second feast, in the Season after Pentecost, tells us of all the compassion which the Mother of the Saviour feels for the Church, the spouse of Jesus who is crucified in her turn and whose devotion to the Sorrows of Mary increases in these calamitous times. His Holiness Pius X in 1908 raised this feast to the rank of a solemnity of the second class.

Nolite me considerare ,quod fusca sim, quia decoloravit me sol, filii matris meae pugnaverunt contra me.
Think not against me because I am black, for the sun hath discoloured me. My mother's children have fought against me. (Magnificat antiphon from 1st Vespers).

Stabant juxta crucem Jesu mater ejus, et soror matris ejus Maria Cleophae, et Salome, et Maria Magdalene. * Mulier, ecce filius tuus: dixit Jesus; ad discipulum autem: Ecce mater tua.
There stood by the cross of Jesus, His mother, and His mother's sister Mary of Cleo-phas, and Salome and Mary Magdalen. * Woman, behold thy son, said Jesus; to the disciple however: Behold thy mother.
(St John 19:25-27 from the Introit of Mass)

Deus, in cujus passione, secundum Simeonis prophetiam, dulclssimam animam gloriosae Virginis et Matris Mariae doloris gladius pertransivit: concede propitius; ut qui dolores ejus venerando recolimus, passionis tuae effectum felicem consequamur.
O God, at whose passion, as Simeon foretold, the most sweet soul of Mary, Thy glorious Virgin Mother, was pierced by a sword of sorrow; mercifully grant that we who reverently meditate upon her sorrows may reap the happy fruit of Thy passion.

Dolorosa et lacrimabilis es, Virgo Marias stans juxta crucem Domini Jesu Filii tui Redemptoris. * Virgo Dei Genitrix, quem totus non capit orbis, hoc crucis fert suppllcium, auctor vitae factus homo.
Alleluia, alleluia. * Stabat sancta Maria, caeli Regina, et mundi Domina, juxta crucem Domini nostri Jesu Christi dolorosa.
Thou art sorrowful and tearful, O Virgin Mary, standing by the cross of the Lord Jesus, thy Son, our Redeemer. * O Virgin Mother of God, He whom the whole world doth not contain, beareth this punishment of the cross; He the author of life made man.
Alleluia, alleluia. * Holy Mary, the queen of heaven and mistress of the world, stood by the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, full of grief.

1. Stabat Mater dolorosa, Juxta crucem lacrimosa, Dum pendebat Filius.
2. Cujus animam gemen-tem, Contristatam et dolentem, Pertransivit gladius.
3. O quam tristis et afflicta Fuit ilia benedicta Mater Unigeniti!
4. Quae maerebat, et dolebat, Pia Mater dum videbat Nati poenas inclyti.
5. Quis est homo, qui non fleret, Matrem Christi si videret In tanto supplicio?
6. Quis non posset contristari, Christi Matrem contemplari Dolentem cum Fllio?
7. Pro peccatis suae gentis Vidit Jesum in tormentis Et flagellis subditum.
8. Vidit suum dulcem natum Moriendo desolatum, Dum emisit spiritum.
9. Eia Mater, fons amoris, Me sentire vim doloris Fac, ut tecum lugeam.
10. Fac ut ardeat cor meum In amando Christum Deum, Ut sibi complaceam.
11. Sancta Mater, istud agas, Crucifixi fige plagas Cordi meo valide.
12. Tui nati vulnerati, Tam dignati pro me pati, Poenas mecum divide.
13. Fac me tecum pie flere, Crucifixo condolere, Donec ego vixero.
14. Juxta crucem tecum stare, Et me tibi sociare In planctu desidero.
15. Virgo virginum praeclara, Mihi jam non sis amara: Fac me tecum plangere.
16. Fac ut portem Christi mortem, Passionis fac consortem, Et plagas recolere.
17. Fac me plagis vulnerari Fac me cruce inebriari, Et cruore Filii.
18. Flammis ne urar succensus. Per te, Virgo, sim defensus, In die judicii.
19. Christe, cum sit hinc exire, Da per Matrem me venire Ad palmam victoriae.
20. Quando corpus morietur, Fac ut animae donetur Paradisi gloria. Amen. Alleluia.

1. At the cross her station keeping, stood the mournful Mother weeping Close to Jesus to the last.
2. Through her heart, His sorrow sharing, All His bitter anguish bearing, Now at length the sword had pass'd.
3. Oh, how sad and sore distressed Was that Mother, highly blest Of the sole-begotten One!
4. Christ above in torment hangs; she beneath beholds the pangs Of her dying glorious Son.
5. Is there one who would not weep Whelm'd in miseries so deep Christ's dear Mother to behold?
6. Can the human heart refrain From partaking in her pain. In that Mother's pain untold?
7. Bruis'd, derided, curs'd, defil'd, She beheld her tender child: All with bloody scourges rent.
8. For the sins of His own nation, Saw Him hang in desolation, Till His spirit forth He sent.
9. O thou Mother! fount of love! Touch my spirit from above; Make my heart with thine accord.
10. Make me feel as thou hast felt; Make my soul to glow and melt With the love of Christ our Lord.
11. Holy Mother! pierce me through; In my heart each wound renew Of my Saviour crucified.
12. Let me share with thee His pain, Who for all my sins was slain, Who for me in torments died.
13. Let me mingle tears with thee, Mourning Him who mourn'd for me, All the days that I may live.
14. By the cross with thee to stay. There with thee to weep and pray, Is all I ask of thee to give.
15. Virgin of all virgins best! Listen to my fond request: Let me share thy grief divine.
16. Let me, to my latest breath, In my body bear the death Of that dying Son of thine.
17. Wounded with His every wound, Steep my soul till it hath swoon'd In His very blood away.
18. Be to me, O Virgin, nigh, Lest in flames I burn and die, In His awful Judgment day.
19. Christ, when Thou shalt call me hence, Be Thy Mother my defense, Be Thy cross my victory.
20. While my body here decays, May my soul Thy goodness praise, Safe in Paradise with Thee. Amen. Alleluia.

The Catholic Encyclopedia on The feast of the Seven Sorrows:

* Stabat Mater by Pietro Perugino, 1482, National Gallery Washington.

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