The Sorrowful Mother Stood

Today is the Memorial of Our Lady of Sorrows. We remember Mary’s seven sorrows: 1) The prophecy of Simeon, 2) The flight into Egypt, 3) The loss of the Child Jesus at Jerusalem, 4) Meeting Jesus on the road to Calvary, 5) The standing at the foot of the Cross, 6) The descent of Jesus from the Cross, and 7) The burial of Jesus. This is one of a small handful of days of the Church year where we have a sequence. The text has been chanted during the Mass on this feast day since the Middle Ages. It recounts for us Mary’s deep sorrows as she stands beneath the cross as her son dies. We share in her sorrows; she shares in ours. The title of the sequence is Stabat Mater Doloroso, which is English for the Sorrowful Mother Stood. She stood in her sorrows. She did not collapse, give up, run away, faint. She stood. So must we in our sorrows.