Suffering is painful.
No one suffered or will ever suffer as much as Jesus did. Next to him, no one will ever suffer as his mother did. St. Alphonsus Liguori wrote:
As Jesus is called the King of Sorrows and the King of Martyrs, because He suffered during His life more than all other Martyrs; so also is Mary with reason called the Queen of Martyrs, having merited this title by suffering the most cruel Martyrdom possible after that of her Son.
– The Dolors of Mary
“Is it nothing to you, all you who pass by? Look and see if there is any sorrow like my sorrow” (Lam. 1:12). She watched her son—she knew he was GOD–die by brutally cruel crucifixion like a criminal. Can you imagine the Mother’s pain as the solders tear the garments she made for her Son, his flesh now torn?
Mel Gibson’s The Passion powerfully depicts Our Lady’s sorrow. “Standing by the cross of Jesus was his mother” Her face sprinkled blood, she asked that she might die with him. As St. Al put it, Mary suffered “grief which was sufficient to cause her death not once, but a thousand times”.
She participated in his suffering to such an extent that when the spear went through his heart it went through into hers. Thus the prophecy of Simeon came to pass:
“Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising of many in
Israel and for a sign that is spoken against (and a sword will pierce through your own soul also), that thoughts out of many hearts may be revealed.”
– Luke 2:34-35
Our Lady was the first and greatest “co-redeemer” with her Divine Son. She suffered with him out of love for him and the love for souls—yours and mine. Mary said yes to GOD.
And so, it makes sense for Jesus on the Cross to give us his Mother from there—from Calvary. When we are suffering we go to our mothers. Mothers have a way of making us feel better. We need Our Lady. She knows how to comfort her suffering children.
Again I think of The Passion. As I shared on phatmass.com, Our Lady was holding my hand when I was in the hospital, in the darkness. She helped me to be at peace. In the movie there is the beautiful scene where she runs to Jesus as he falls under the weight of the Cross. “I’m here” she consoles, and immediately Jesus’ Cross seems lighter. Well, if Mary is our Mother then she does the same for us. When you’re in Christ you live his life. She runs to us when we suffer and helps us to bear the Cross for the greatest glory of GOD.
Suffering is painful. Our Mother, Our Lady of Sorrows brings some sweetness to it.
Act of Consecration to our Sorrowful Mother
Holy Mary, Mother of God and Queen of Martyrs, I do this day choose thee as my model, protectress, and advocate. In thy Immaculate Heart, pierced with so many swords of sorrow, I place my poor soul forever. Receive me as thy especial servant as a partaker in thy sufferings. Give me strength always to remain close to that Cross on which thy only Son died for me. All that I am and have, I consecrate to thy service. Accept every good work that I may perform and offer it to thy Son for me. Dear Mother, help me to be worthy of the title: “Servant of Mary.” Stand by me in all my actions that they may be directed to the glory of God. As thou wert close to Christ, thy Son, on the cross, be near to me, thy child, in my last agony. Obtain for me, that I may invoke thine and His sweet Name saying with my lips and my heart: “Jesus, Mary and Joseph, assist me in my last agony. Jesus, Mary and Joseph, may I die in peace in your holy company.”