Mary is the queen of Martyrs, for her Martyrdom was longer and greater than that of all the Martyrs.
Who can ever have a heart so hard that it will not melt on hearing the most lamentable event that once occurred in the world?
There was a noble and holy mother who had an only son. This son was the most amiable that can be imagined – innocent, virtuous, beautiful, who loved his mother most tenderly; so much so that he had never caused her the least displeasure, but had ever shown her all respect, obedience, and affection; hence this mother had placed her affections on earth in this son.
Hear, then, what happened. This son, through envy, was falsely accused by his enemies; and though the judge knew, and himself confessed, that he was innocent, yet, that he might not offend his enemies, he condemned him to the ignominious death that they demanded. This poor mother had to suffer the grief of seeing that amiable and beloved son unjustly snatched from her in the flower of his age by a barbarous death; for, by dint of torments and drained of all his blood, he was made to die on an infamous gibbet in a public place of execution, and this before her own eyes.
Devout souls, what say you? Is not this event, and is not this unhappy mother, worthy of compassion? You already understand of whom I speak. This son, so cruelly executed, was our loving Redeemer Jesus; and this mother was the Blessed Virgin Mary; who, for the love she bore us, was willing to see him sacrificed to divine justice by the barbarity of men. This great torment which Mary endured for us – a torment that was more than a thousand deaths – deserves both our compassion and our gratitude.
If we can make no other return for so much love, at least let us give a few moments this day to consider the greatness of the sufferings by which Mary became the Queen of martyrs; for the sufferings of her great martyrdom exceeded those of all the martyrs; being, in the first place, the longest in point of duration; and in the second place, the greatest in point of intensity.
From “Victories of the Martyrs”: By St. Alphonsus Liguori
Petitions to the Sorrowful Heart of Mary
V. Incline unto my aid, O God!
R. O Lord, make haste to help me!
One Glory be.
1. I compassionate thee, O sorrowful Mother Mary, on account of that grief suffered by thy tender heart at the prophecy of the aged Holy Simeon. O dearest Mother, through this thy afflicted heart, implore for me the virtue of humility and the Gift of the Fear of God. One Hail Mary.
2. I compassionate thee, O sorrowful Mother Mary, on account of those distressing fears which thy affectionate heart endured on the flight to Egypt and during thy sojourn there. O dearest Mother, through this thy anxious heart implore for me the virtue of generosity, particularly for the poor, and the Gift of Piety. One Hail Mary.
3. I compassionate thee, O sorrowful Mother Mary, on account of that anxiety which thy worried heart endured in the loss of thy beloved Child Jesus. O dearest Mother, through this thy exceedingly troubled heart, implore for me the virtue of chastity and the Gift of Knowledge. One Hail Mary.
4. I compassionate thee, O sorrowful Mother Mary, on account of that horror with which thy mother’s heart was stricken when meeting Jesus, bearing the Cross. O dearest Mother, through this thy exceedingly oppressed heart, implore for me the virtue of patience and the Gift of Fortitude. One Hail Mary.
5. I compassionate thee, O sorrowful Mother Mary, on account of that martyrdom which tortured thy magnanimous heart at the death-agony of Jesus. O dearest Mother, through this thy martyred heart, implore for me the virtue of temperance and the Gift of Counsel. One Hail Mary.
6. I compassionate thee, O sorrowful Mother Mary, on account of the anguish inflicted upon thy tender heart by the thrust of the lance that opened the side of Jesus and pierced His Most Adorable Heart. O dearest Mother, through this vicarious transfixion of thy own heart, implore for me the virtue of brotherly love and the Gift of Understanding. One Hail Mary.
7. I compassionate thee, O sorrowful Mother Mary, on account of that agony of soul which racked thy most loving heart at the burial of Jesus. O dearest Mother, through this extreme torment that filled thy burdened heart, implore for me the virtue of zeal and the Gift of Wisdom. One Hail Mary.
V. Pray for us, O Virgin Most Sorrowful!
R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ
Let us pray.
O Lord Jesus Christ, we beseech thee that the most Blessed Virgin Mary, whose soul was pierced by the Sword of Sorrow in the hour of Thy Passion, may be our advocate at the throne of Thy Mercy, now, and at the hour of our death. Through Thee, Jesus Christ, Redeemer of the World, Who livest and reignest with the Father and the Holy Ghost, world without end. Amen.
The Seven Graces
granted by Our Lady to souls who honour Her daily by saying seven Hail Mary’s and meditating on Her Tears and Dolours.
These promises were revealed to St Bridget of Sweden by Our Lady Herself.
- I will grant peace to their families.
- They will be enlightened about the divine mysteries.
- I will console them in their pains and I will accompany them in their work.
- 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.
- I will defend them in their spiritual battles with the infernal enemy and I will protect them at every instant of their lives.
- I will visibly help them at the moment of their death, they will see the face of their mother.
- I have obtained (this grace) from my Divine Son, that those who propagate this devotion to my tears and sorrows, will be taken directly from this earthly life to eternal happiness since all their sins will be forgiven and my Son will be their eternal consolation and joy.