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4th Station, Jesus Meets His Mother

4th Station, Jesus Meets His Mother by Br. Mickey McGrath, OSFS

Artist Narrative:

Holy Mary, Mother of the Lord, you remained faithful when the disciples fled. Just as you believed when the angel announced to you what was incredible – that you were going to become the mother of the Most High - so too you believed at the hour of his greatest humiliation. Thus it was that, at the hour of the cross, at the hour of the darkest night of the world, you became Mother of believers, Mother of the Church. We pray to you: teach us to believe, and help us so that our faith may become the courage to serve and the gesture of a love which comes to help and knows how to share in suffering.

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My Jesus, it was a great sorrow to realize Your pain caused Mary so much grief. As Redeemer, You wanted her to share in Your pain for mankind. When You glanced at each other in unutterable suffering, what gave you both the courage to carry on without the least alleviation - without anger at such injustice?

It seems as if you desired to suffer every possible pain to give me an example of how to suffer when my time comes. What a humiliation for You when Your mother saw you in such a pitiable state - weak - helpless - at the mercy of sinful men - holiness exposed to evil in all hideousness.

Did every moment of that short encounter seem like an eternity? As I see so much suffering in the world, there are times I think it is all hopeless. There is an element of lethargy in my prayers for mankind that says "I'll pray, but what good will it do? The sick grow sicker and the hungry starve. " I think of that glance between You and Mary - the glance that said, "Let us give this misery to the Father for the salvation of souls. The Father's power takes our pain and frustration and renews souls, saves them for a new life - a life of eternal joy, eternal happiness. It is worth it all." Give perseverance to the sick so they can carry the cross of frustration and agony with love and resignation for the salvation of others.

Amen

—Excerpts from Jesus Meets His Mother by Mother Angelica, EWTN

Jesus rises; though wounded by His fall, He journeys on, with His Cross still on His shoulders. He is bent down; but at one place, looking up, He sees His Mother. For an instant they just see each other, and He goes forward.
Mary would rather have had all His sufferings herself, could that have been, than not have known what they were by ceasing to be near Him. He, too, gained a refreshment, as from some soothing and grateful breath of air, to see her sad smile amid the sights and the noises which were about Him. She had known Him beautiful and glorious, with the freshness of Divine Innocence and peace upon His countenance; now she saw Him so changed and deformed that she could scarce have recognized Him, save for the piercing, thrilling, peace-inspiring look He gave her. Still, He was now carrying the load of the world's sins, and, all-holy though He was, He carried the image of them on His very face. He looked like some outcast or outlaw who had frightful guilt upon Him. He had been made sin for us, who knew no sin; not a feature, not a limb, but spoke of guilt, of a curse, of punishment, of agony.

Oh, what a meeting of Son and Mother! Yet there was a mutual comfort, for there was a mutual sympathy. Jesus and Mary--do they forget that Passion-tide through all eternity?

—Excerpts from The Stations of the Cross, The Fourth Station by John Henry Cardinal Newman (1860)