A devotion for Good Friday Evening In honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary, in her desolation after the death of her Divine Son
By the sealed and rock-hewn grave,
Where her Son in death is sleeping
Stands the Mother, mournful weeping
And her heart in twain is torn.
Now bereft of Him, her dearest,
All her joy in Him is dying;
Come to Mary in her sighing,
Come, ye faithful souls, and mourn.
Act of Contrition
God of infinite mercy, behold me humbly prostrate at your feet, filled with confusion for my ingratitude against your divine majesty and goodness. I fully well know that my sins were the cause that my dear Jesus died. Pity me, Lord, who ask pardon with tears, as I firmly resolve to offend you no more. And you, Mary, my sorrowful Mother, entreat forgiveness for me, and permit me to keep you company in your sorrow for the loss of your dear Son; may I weep with you and never more pierce, by my sins, your loving heart and the Heart of your Son.
Mother, my Mother desolate, I will not leave you alone to weep. I will join my tears to yours. With you I will grieve your sorrows and the death of my dear Redeemer.
Let us meditate on the sufferings of Mary as she stands by the tomb.
Consider the desolation of Mary as she stands by the sepulcher wherein the lifeless body of her dear Son has just been laid. Let us look on that face of bitter anguish and desolation. A short time before, the sacred Body of Jesus disfigured and covered with wounds and bruises had rested in her arms! A cold stone is now between the Son and the Mother. See with what love her eyes are fixed on the tomb. Mary had shared with her Divine Son all the Sufferings of His Passion, but now she is alone in her grief, for Jesus is no more. What grief is like her grief! Let us ask ourselves who has caused all this sorrow. It is I, my Mother, it is my sins that crucified your Son. Had it not been for sin, Jesus would never have died.
O Mary, my dear Mother, with such grief do I see you weeping at the tomb of Jesus. The more I grieve that I cannot bring you any comfort, the more I stand reproved that I am the cause of your Sorrows. Blessed Mother, Mother of Mercy, have pity on me, accept the tears of a truly contrite heart, and offer them in union with those you shed at the Holy Sepulcher, to Jesus your Divine Son, that they may be accepted in expiation of past sin. Grant that I may never forget your sorrows, and never again by fresh sin crucify my loving Savior.
Seven Hail Mary’s, one Glory be, and the first verse of the Stabat Mater:
At the cross her station keeping,
Stood the mournful Mother weeping,
Close to Jesus to the last.
Most Sorrowful Virgin, pray for us.
Let us follow Mary when she leaves the Holy Sepulcher.
St. John, the beloved disciple of Jesus, and the holy women are with her. She must pass one by one the hallowed stations of her Divine Son’s Passion. Let us meditate more especially on the sufferings of her sorrowful heart when she sees Calvary again, and the Cross on which Jesus a few hours before was crucified. She sees the ground beneath the Cross crimsoned with His
Precious Blood. She recalls the three hours of agony when she stood watching her dying Son, noting each bleeding gash of His lacerated Body, hearing the insults and blasphemies poured out against Him, seeing that chalice of humiliation, the gall and vinegar presented to His lips, listening to His last expiring words, His prayer for his enemies, and those words of bitter anguish and last farewell addressed to herself – “Behold thy son.” And Mary kneels at the foot of the Cross, and clasps again and again the hard wood, and kisses the stains of the Precious Blood which has brought salvation to her newly- adopted children.
O Mary, these words, “Behold thy son” have sunk deep into your heart and will never be forgotten by you. Have we ever realized that Christ dying for us bequeathed to us what He most prized on earth, His own beloved Mother to be ours? O Mother of Sorrows! As your life was one of continual grief, teach us like you to love the Cross; let us in our adversity share your fortitude, and if ever a day should come when we feel weighed down by trouble and grief, then let us kneel in spirit at its foot, and remembering the parting gift of our dying Lord, invoke your holy protection, and through the merits of those sufferings endured on Calvary, obtain peace of mind and resignation to the will of God. Teach us, O Blessed Mother, to love Jesus as you loved him, in suffering and humiliation, and obtain for us a true devotion to His Passion.
Seven Hail Mary’s, one Glory be and the second verse of the Stabat Mater:
Through her heart, his sorrow sharing,
All his bitter anguish bearing,
Now at length the sword had passed
Mary, Queen of Martyrs, pray for us.
Let us follow Mary when she returns to the city of Jerusalem. St John has taken her to his own home. Let us enter that house and remain awhile with our Mother in her solitude.
Let us taste that feeling of utter desolation that pierces afresh her sorrowing heart. Mary is weeping bitterly, for great indeed is her affliction and sorrow. There is none now to gladden her heart, for Jesus, her joy, her comfort, and her all, is gone from her. Jesus and Mary had been companions in joy and in sorrow, and no words can express their intimate union. She has shared His poverty, His humiliations, and the agony of His Passion. She clung to Him when all others had forsaken Him, and most willingly would she have laid her head in the grave of her
Divine Son. But Jesus has departed from her, and Mary is alone, alone in her sorrow. Every action of Mary’s life was fulfilled with a view to Jesus, was directed solely by the love of Him, and was done for His eyes alone. It was this banishment from His sight, the severing of that close union with Him, that bitter separation from her Son which flooded her immaculate heart with the uttermost desolation.
Mother most loving, as I think of you in your poor home without your Son, my heart aches. O most sorrowful Mary! If ever we should be overcome by that most cruel desolation of soul, and Jesus should leave us and hide Himself, so that we can nowhere find rest or consolation in prayer, let us then turn to you, O Mother of Mercy! And invoking you by the merits of the sorrows endured in your desolation, may our past faults be pardoned, and the light of your Son’s face shine again upon our souls. Grant us, O Mother, such a tender devotion to your sorrows, and above all to the Passion of Christ which caused them that we may be more purified from sin, and finally be admitted to reign with you and your Divine Son for all eternity.
Prayer. Seven Hail Mary’s, one Glory be and the third verse of the Stabat Mater:
O how sad and sore distressed
Was that Mother highly blessed
Of the sole begotten One.
O Mother most desolate, pray for us now, and at the hour of our death.
The Asian American community has faced a disturbing rise of anti-Asian hate and violence amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. As a community of men gathered in the name of the Lord Jesus and committed to living the gospel, the United States Province of the Order of Friar Servants of Mary condemns in the strongest possible terms unprovoked attacks on Asian Americans, especially the elderly, and the tragic murder of eight innocent persons in Atlanta, six of whom were women of Asian descent.
We agree with Pope Francis that “[e]very brother or sister in need, when abandoned or ignored by the society in which I live, becomes an existential foreigner, even though born in the same country. They may be citizens with full rights, yet they are treated like foreigners in their own country” (Fratelli tutti 97). This quote speaks directly to the type of racism experienced by Asian Americans, for they have been treated as perpetual foreigners in their own country. To be treated forever as a foreigner in one’s own country often leads to being treated as an object to be ignored, bullied, harassed verbally and physically, because one is seen as an outsider and second-class citizen. We deplore such depictions of Asian Americans as less than human, for as Christians we believe that each and every person – regardless of race, nationality, or ethnicity – is created in the image and likeness of God, possessing inherent and undeniable dignity as persons in Christ.
We take this moment to reiterate our commitment to dismantle the sin of racism, to repent of complicity or omission on our part in perpetuating racial discrimination, and to extend our fraternity to all people, with the hope of breaking down walls which divide us from one another and disregard our fundamental equality as beloved children of God. Like Mary, the Mother of Jesus, who stood at the cross of her son as he suffered on Calvary, we recognize Christ suffering again in the lives, bodies and persons of our brothers and sisters who are oppressed by injustice, racism, violence, and economic deprivation. We stand in solidarity with the Asian American community in vehemently denouncing the xenophobia, nativist racism, violence, and trauma experienced by our Asian American brothers and sisters.
Our Lady of Sorrows Basilica, Chicago, is pleased to serve as the location for Communion and Liberation’s Annual Way of the Cross. From the press release:
Each year we follow the passion of Christ in the heart of our city, where thousands of people carry their cross every day. Through choral music, Gospel passages, reflections, and our silent procession, we hope to enter more deeply into the events of Good Friday and their meaning for us today. We ask to experience the exceptional Presence of Christ among us as a real answer to the needs of our hearts.
Due to COVID, this year the Stations of the Cross will take place at Our Lady of Sorrows Basilica.
OUR LADY OF SORROWS BASILICA
3121 W Jackson Blvd, Chicago
APRIL 2, 2021
9:30am – 11:30am
Mask and Social Distancing will be required in accordance with safety protocols
Bro. Edmund M. Baran, O.S.M. a solemn professed friar of the Order Friar Servants of Mary, USA Province, died Tuesday January 12, 2021, at Rush University Medical Center, Chicago. He was eighty-six years of age and a friar for sixty-six years. Beloved son of the late John and the late Stephanie nee Skora. Dear brother of the late Grace Tarascio, the late Lorraine Niedermayer, the late Adeline Baran, the late Eugene, the late Richard (Teresa), loving uncle to many nieces and nephews and grand nieces and nephews. Bro. Edmund entered the Servite Order on September 5, 1952, making his first profession of vows in 1954 and Solemn Profession of Vows in 1958. His assignments included the Servite Community in Louvain, Belgium and Servite Provincial Treasurer. He also worked for the Archdiocese of Chicago School Board as Program Director of their Comprehensive Employment and Training Program from 1969 until 1992. Bro. Edmund joined the U.S. Coast Guard Auxillary 9th Western Region in 1984 and served as Commodore from 2004-2006 He had many happy memories of the time he served. Visitation Tuesday, January 19th from 10:00 -11:00 AM at Our Lady of Sorrows Basilica 3121 W. Jackson Blvd. Chicago, followed by 11:00 AM Mass of Christian Burial. Masks required. Interment Servite plot, Queen of Heaven Cemetery, Hillside IL. In lieu of flowers donations in his memory to the Servite Provincial Center, 3121 W Jackson Blvd, Chicago, IL 60612.
Fr. David M. Brown O.S.M., a solemn professed friar and priest of the Order of Friar Servants of Mary, USA Province, died Saturday, January 2, 2021 at St. Joseph Village of Chicago. He was ninety-seven years of age and a priest for seventy-two years. Loving son of the late David and the late Laura Brown, dear brother of James (Karen) Brown, Daniel (Helen) Brown, The late Margaret Mary Fitzgerald, the late Thomas (Margaret) Brown, the late Laurann (Thomas) McCarthy. Visitation Thursday, January 7th, from 10:00 AM to 11:00 AM followed by Mass of Christian Burial at 11:00 AM at Our Lady of Sorrows Basilica, 3121 W. Jackson Blvd., Chicago. Masks required. Interment in the Servite plot, Queen of Heaven Cemetery, Hillside IL. In lieu of flowers donations to The Servite Friars-USA Province, 3121 W Jackson Blvd, Chicago IL 60612.