7 SORROWS OF MARY
In short, the Seven Sorrows are seven events in the life of the Blessed Virgin Mary that we can use as a meditation in our quest toward sainthood. The Feast of Our Lady of Seven Sorrows is on September 15.
1st SORROW THE PROPHECY OF SIMEON
Luke 2:22-35 - When the days were completed for their purification according to the law of Moses, they took him up to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord, just as it is written in the law of the Lord, "Every male that opens the womb shall be consecrated to the Lord," and to offer the sacrifice of "a pair of turtledoves or two young pigeons," in accordance with the dictate in the law of the Lord. Now there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon. This man was righteous and devout, awaiting the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he should not see death before he had seen the Messiah of the Lord. He came in the Spirit into the temple; and when the parents brought in the child Jesus to perform the custom of the law in regard to him, he took him into his arms and blessed God, saying: "Now, Master, you may let your servant go in peace, according to your word, for my eyes have seen your salvation, which you prepared in sight of all the peoples, a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and glory for your people Israel." The child's father and mother were amazed at what was said about him; and Simeon blessed them and said to Mary his mother, "Behold, this 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."
2nd SORROW THE FLIGHT INTO EGYPT
Matthew 2:13-21 - When the Magi had departed, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream He 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." Joseph rose and took the child and his mother by night, and departed to Egypt, and remained there until the death of Herod. Then Herod, when he saw that he had been tricked by the wise men, was in a furious rage. He sent and killed all the male children in Bethlehem and in all that region who were two years old or under. But when Herod died, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared in a dream to Joseph in Egypt. "Rise, take the child and his mother, and go to the land of Israel, for those who sought the child's life are dead." And he rose and took the child and his mother, and went to the land of Israel.
3rd SORROW LOSING JESUS IN THE TEMPLE
Luke 2:41-50 - Now his parents went to Jerusalem every year at the feast of the Passover. And when he was twelve years old, they went up according to custom; When the feast was ended, as they were returning, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem. His parents did not know it, but supposing him to be in the company they went a day's journey, They sought him among their kinsfolk and acquaintances; and when they did not find him, they returned to Jerusalem, seeking him. After three days they found him in the temple, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. His mother said to him, "Son, why have you treated us so? Behold, your father and I have been looking for you anxiously." He said to them, "How is it that you sought me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father's house?"
4th SORROW MARY MEETS JESUS ON THE WAY TO THE CROSS
John 19:1; Luke 23:26-32 - So they took Jesus, and he went out, bearing his own cross. And as they led him away, they seized one Simon of Cyrene, who was coming in from the country, and laid on him the cross, to carry it behind Jesus And there followed him a great multitude of the people, and of women who bewailed and lamented him. But Jesus turning to them said, "Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for me, but weep for yourselves and for your children. For behold, the days are coming when they will say, 'Blessed are the barren, and the wombs that never bore, and the breasts that never gave suck!' For if they do this when the wood is green, what will happen when it is dry?" And they brought him to the place called Golgotha (which means the place of a skull).
5th SORROW JESUS DIES ON THE CROSS
Mark 15:22; John 19:18, 25-27; Mark 15:34; Luke 23:46 - And they brought him to the place called Golgotha (which means the place of a skull). There they crucified him, and with him two others, one on either side, and Jesus between them. Standing by the cross of Jesus were his Mother, and his Mother's sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw his mother, and the disciple whom he loved standing near, 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 to his own home. And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, "E'lo-i, E'lo-i, la'ma sabach-tha'ni?" which means, "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" Then Jesus, crying with a loud voice, said, "Father, into thy hands I commit my spirit!" And having said this he breathed his last.
6th SORROW MARY RECEIVES THE DEAD BODY OF HER SON
John 19:31-34, 38; Lamentations 1:12 - In order to prevent the bodies from remaining on the cross on the Sabbath, the Jews asked Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away. So the soldiers came and broke the legs of the first, and of the other who had been crucified with him; but when they came to Jesus and saw that he was already dead, they did not break his legs. But one of the soldiers pierced his side with a spear, and at once there came out blood and water. After this Joseph of Arimathea, who was a disciple of Jesus, asked Pilate that he might take away the body of Jesus. Pilate gave him leave. So he came and took away his body. "Is it nothing to you, all you who pass by? Look and see if there is any sorrow like my sorrow.
7th SORROW JESUS IS LAID IN THE TOMB
Matthew 27:59; John 19:38-42; Mark 15:46; Luke 27:55-56 - Joseph took the body, and wrapped it in a clean linen shroud, Nicodemus also, who had at first come to Jesus by night, came bringing a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about a hundred pounds' weight. They took the body of Jesus, and bound it in linen cloths with the spices, as is the burial custom of the Jews. Now in the place where he was crucified there was a garden, and in the garden a new tomb where no one had ever been laid. So because of the Jewish day of Preparation, as the tomb was close at hand, they laid Jesus there. And Joseph rolled a stone against the door of the tomb. The women who had come with him from Galilee followed, and saw the tomb, and how his body was laid. Then they returned, and prepared spices and ointments. On the Sabbath they rested according to the commandment.
The Blessed Virgin Mary revealed to St. Bridget of Sweden (1303-1373) that seven graces are granted to the souls who honor her daily by saying seven Hail Mary's and meditating on her tears and dolors.
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 Mother.
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 and I will be their eternal consolation and joy.