Jesus on the Cross, His Mother at Its Foot: Monday, September 14, 2015

J.M.J. Today's Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross only reaffirms our love and appreciation for Christ and for His Holy Mother.

"It is true that Mary was not present (when Jesus suffered in the Garden of Gethsemane, was scourged, etc.), but she was keenly and fully aware of those selfsame events. When Mary functioned as handmaid and mother, and when she offered herself completely to God together with her Son in the temple, she was already a participant with Him in the painful atonement on behalf of the human race. We may not doubt, therefore, that she suffered along with His most bitter sufferings and with His torments in the very depths of her soul. Finally, with Mary present and before her very eyes, the divine sacrifice for which she had borne and nurtured the Victim was to be finished . . . . We see 'His mother Mary, weeping, standing by the cross of Jesus.' She experienced this immense love for us so that she might receive us as her children. Insofar as her Son was concerned, she offered Him to the justice of God. In her heart she died with Him, her heart transfixed with a sword of suffering."

--Pope Leo XIII, Iucunda Semper Expectatione (September 8, 1894), 3.

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