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JOSEPH FHRICH (1800-1876)
WAY OF THE CROSS 1844-46
CHURCH OF ST JOHN NEPOMUK - VIENNA

FOURTH STATION
Jesus meets his Mother

V/. We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you.
R/. Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

From the Gospel according to John 19:25-27

Standing by the cross of Jesus were his mother, and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw his mother, and the disciple whom he loved standing near, he said to his mother, “Woman, behold, your son!” Then he said to the disciple, “Behold, your mother!” And from that hour the disciple took her to his own home.

 

MEDITATION

The Gospels do not directly recount a meeting between Jesus and his Mother along the way of the cross, but speak instead of the presence of Mary standing at the foot of the cross. There Jesus speaks to her and to the beloved disciple, the Evangelist John. His words have an immediate meaning: he entrusts Mary to John, so that he might take care of her. Yet his words also have a broader and more profound meaning: at the foot of the cross Mary is called to utter a second “yes”, after the “yes” which she spoke at the Annunciation, when she became the Mother of Jesus and thus opened the door to our salvation.

With this second “yes”, Mary becomes the Mother of us all, the Mother of every man and woman for whom Jesus shed his blood. Here motherhood is a living sign of God’s love and mercy for us. Because of this, the bonds of affection and trust uniting the Christian people to Mary are deep and strong. As a result, we have recourse to her spontaneously, especially at the most difficult times of our lives.

Mary, however, paid a high price for this universal motherhood. Simeon had prophesied of her in the Temple of Jerusalem: “a sword will pierce through your own soul” (Lk 2:35).

Mary, Mother of Jesus and our Mother, help us to feel in our hearts, tonight and always, the love-filled suffering which joined you to the cross of your Son.

 

All:

Pater noster, qui es in clis:
sanctificetur nomen tuum;
adveniat regnum tuum;
fiat voluntas tua, sicut in clo, et in terra.
Panem nostrum cotidianum da nobis hodie;
et dimitte nobis debita nostra,
sicut et nos dimittimus debitoribus nostris;
et ne nos inducas in tentationem;
sed libera nos a malo.

Qu mrebat et dolebat
pia mater, cum videbat
nati pœnas incliti.

 

 

Copyright 2010 - Libreria Editrice Vaticana

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