This talk is taken from "City of God" by Mother Mary Agreda. As you may know - Our Lady Herself instructed her with these words. The following are instructions that would do all of us good in order for our lives to be lived in imitation of our Good Queen and Mother. May we pray for the grace to live in imitation of Her as best we can for the glory of God and for the salvation of souls! Enjoy!
"My daughter, the mysterious sacrament of the patience of my Son, by which He bore all the affronts and insults, is a sealed book, which can be opened and understood only by the divine light. You have come to the knowledge of it, as it has been partly laid open for you, although on account of your limited powers, you write much less than you have seen. But this mystery is being made clear and intelligible to you in the secret of your heart, I wish that it be also written there and that you study by this living example that divine science, which neither flesh nor blood can teach you. For the world does not know, nor does it merit to know this science. This philosophy consists in recognizing and loving the happy lot of the poor, the humble, the afflicted, the despised, and those unknown among the children of vanity. This school my most holy and loving Son established in His Church, when He proclaimed and set up the eight beatitudes. Afterwards, when He Himself assumed all the sufferings of His Passion, He became for us a Teacher, who practices what He teaches, as you have seen. Nevertheless, although it is set before the eyes of the Catholics, and can be plainly read by them in this book of life during their whole earthly pilgrimage, there are but few and scattered souls who enter into this school and study this book, while countless are the wayward and foolish, who ignore this science in their unwillingness to be taught.
All abhor poverty and thirst after riches, none of them being willing to recognize their emptiness. Infinite is the number of those who are carried away by their anger and vengeance, despising meekness. Few deplore their real miseries and struggle merely for terrestrial consolations; scarcely any love justice, or loyally pursue it in their dealings with the neighbors. Mercy is almost extinct, purity of heart is sullied and infringed upon, peace is constrained. None grant pardon, none wish to suffer for justice’s sake, yea not even the least of the many torments and pains, which they have so justly merited. Thus, my dearest, there are few who attain the blessings promised by my Divine Son and by me. Many times the just indignation and anger of the Almighty is roused against the professors of the true faith; since in the very sight of the living example of their Master, they live almost like infidels; many of them being even more abominable in their lives; for they are properly those who despise the fruits of the Redemption, which they have come to know and confess In the land of saints they impiously perform the works of wickedness, and make themselves unworthy of the remedies, which are put at their disposal in more merciful abundance.
I desire of you, my daughter, that you labor valiantly for this blessedness, by seeking to imitate me perfectly according to your grace of so deeply understanding this doctrine, which is hidden from the prudent and wise of this world. Day after day I manifest to you new secrets of my wisdom, in order that it may be established in your heart and you may extend your hands to valiant deeds. And now I will tell you of an exercise which I practiced and which you can imitate to a certain degree. You know already, that from the very first instant of my Conception I was full of grace, without the least stain or participation of the least effect of Original Sin. On account of this singular privilege I was blessed in all the virtues, without feeling any repugnance or opposition in the exercise of them, and without being conscious of owing satisfaction for any sins of my own. Nevertheless the divine enlightenment taught me, that I was a Daughter of Adam by nature, which in him had sinned, and therefore I felt bound to humiliate myself to the very dust, even though I shared none of the guild of that sin. And since I also possessed senses of the same kind as those, through which sin and its effects were contracted and which then and afterwards are operative in present human conditions, I thought myself obliged to mortify them, humiliate them and deprive them of the enjoyment proper to their nature, simply on account of this my parentage from Adam. I acted like a most faithful daughter of a family, who assumes the debt of her father and of her brothers as her own, though she had no share in contracting it, and who strives to pay and satisfy for it the more earnestly, the more she loves her family and the more they are unable to satisfy and free themselves from it, not giving herself any rest until she succeeds. This have I done with all the human race, whose miseries and transgressions I bewailed. Because I was a Daughter of Adam I mortified in me the senses and faculties with which he sinned, and I humiliated myself as one that had fallen and one guilty of his sin and disobedience, though I was entirely free from them. All this I did not only for Adam, but for all who by nature are my brethren. You can not imitate me under like conditions, since you are a partaker in his sin and guilt. But I herewith impose upon you to labor without ceasing for yourself and for your neighbor, and to humiliate yourself to the very dust; since a contrite and humble heart draws down mercy from the divine goodness."
Today is the feast of the Seven Sorrows of Mary. Like Jesus Christ, Our Blessed Mother’s sufferings were for all of us, and we know this from the writings of the early Church Fathers and the saints who were privileged to receive the graces to know of her sufferings. They were consummated on Calvary and began for Her at Her conception. It is hard for us to comprehend that this information about Her future sorrows was made known to Her so young but it was necessary so that Her “Fiat” was understood. She was privileged to know of the future of the Son of God and how She herself would be a part of it for our salvation. It is only just that God the Father would allow Her this in order for a true surrender to His Most Holy Will.
Being that Mary was full of grace, it is always beautiful to meditate upon Her love and self-sacrifice. If we could go back to the day when we had nursing sisters and envision one bending over the bed of a dying man left to his own misery and uttering the words which give him back his childhood, we would have a figure of Our Blessed Mother who bends over the world in agony with all the tenderness and charity which suffers much more from its compassion than the sufferer from his disease. Our Lady knows what the disease is which all of us are ill with and She knows full well who must be the Victim for all these wounds.
St. Paul tells us: “He was made sin for us.” II Cor 5:21
This is the center of the mystery of suffering. Jesus felt Himself identified with Evil whose horror He knew in the vision of God and felt Himself as made to bear the responsibility for all man’s denials of God. What was Mary’s role in this giving of self. She brought a Mother’s heart to the death agony of God. And She alone realized the immensity of the tragedy which centered all of human history in the crucifixion of Love.
At the cross, He gave Her to us, “Behold Thy Mother”.
She is bound to us with the same love which binds Her to Him. Therefore, She stands as long as the divine agony endures. She knew all the outrages which men would inflict on Her beloved Son and which She already knew by the Sacred Scriptures; outrages which were to cause Him to die before Her very eyes and on an infamous Cross, exhausted of His blood, abandoned by all. By this bitter knowledge, which for so many years afflicted Her Heart, may we ask Our Good Queen and Mother to obtain the grace that during our lives and at our death, we may always keep the Passion and Death of Jesus and Her Sorrows impressed upon our hearts now and forever.
Our Lady of Sorrows, pray for us!
Bernadette Porter is a Traditional Catholic, a wife of 41 years with 6 adult home-schooled children and 5 grandchildren. A sincere devotion to Mary, the Mother of God leads me to want to share "The Church's best kept secret" - Mary!