Easter Sunday

Wishing you all a very joyous Easter. 

Alleluia, He is risen!

Good Friday

From:  The Mystical Rose (by Blessed John Henry Newman) pgs. 106-107

Queen of Martyrs:  Why is she so called? – she who never had any blow, or wound, or other injury to her consecrated person….  To answer this question, it must be recollected that the pains of the soul may be as fierce as those of the body….

What an overwhelming horror it must have been for the Blessed Mary to witness the Passion and the Crucifixion of her Son!  Her anguish was, as holy Simeon had announced to her, at the time of her Son’s presentation in the Temple, a sword piercing her soul.  If our Lord himself could not bear the prospect of what was before him, and was covered at the thought of it with a bloody sweat, his soul thus acting upon his body, does not this show how great mental pain can be?  And would it have been a thing to wonder at if Mary’s head and heart had given way as she stood under his cross?

Thus is she most truly the Queen of Martyrs.

Holy Thursday

The Institution of the Eucharist –

Having blogged at Contemplative Haven for almost six years now, and at this site for the past few, it has always been a difficult choice as to what to focus on for Holy Thursday.  So many things happened on this night:  the Last Supper, the washing of the feet, the betrayal of Judas, the Agony in the Garden, the arrest of Jesus, His intense suffering at the hands of the Roman soldiers, Peter’s denial…  During Mass, we also have the chrism oils, and remember that this is the most holy day of the year for our priests.

But this year, as I was reflecting on all these, the Rosary also came to mind – the fact that the Last Supper (when Christ instituted the Holy Eucharist) is the fifth Luminous mystery (mystery of Light), and that Mary is the Mother of the Eucharist.  The Holy Eucharist and the Blessed Virgin Mary are forever entwined, and why wouldn’t they be, since the Holy Eucharist is the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of our Lord, Jesus Christ, and Mary is the Mother of God – and their Sacred and Immaculate Hearts are perfectly united.

We have been given everything we need to help bring Light into the darkness.  As Gerald Francis wrote in “Our Lady and the Eucharist”, at The Real Presence “When Catholics anchor their faith on these two indestructible, inseparable pillars-the Eucharist and our Lady-then the enemy will be defeated and a great calm will descend upon both the Church and the world.”

Under the Cross

Raphael (c. 1503) "The Crucifixion with Sts Mary Virgin, Mary Magdalen, John and Jerome" (National Gallery, London)

We who suffer, we who are in anguish and anxiety, should stand with the Virgin Mary under the cross. Through her, we will find the courage to keep believing, and the strength to bear the burdens that tear our souls apart.

Catherine Doherty, from: God in the Nitty-Gritty Life

The Crucifixion


Excerpt from, “The Mother of the Saviour and Our Interior Life”, by Father Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange, O.P. (pgs. 188-189):

What must have been the value of her sufferings at the foot of the Cross, granted the understanding she then had of the mystery of the Redemption!

In the spiritual light which then flooded her soul, Mary saw that all souls are called to sing the glory of God. Every soul is called to be as it were a ray of the divinity, a spiritual ray of knowledge and love, for our minds are made to know God and our wills to love Him. But though the heavens tell God’s glory unfailingly, thousands of souls turn from their Creator….

Mary saw all that evil, all those wounds in souls, just as we see the evils and wounds of bodies. Her fulness of grace had given her an immense capacity to suffer from the greatest of evils, sin. She suffered as much as she loved God and souls: God offended by sin and souls whom it rendered worthy of eternal damnation. Most of all did Mary see the crime of deicide prepared in hearts and brought to execution: she saw the terrible paroxysm of hatred of Him Who is the Light and the Author of salvation.


Mother of the Eucharist



On Holy Thursday, Christ instituted the sacrament of Holy Eucharist at the Last Supper with His apostles.  Do we generally think of Mary in relation to the Last Supper, or indeed, every time we receive Holy Communion?  We should.  In the Dictionary of Mary (pg. 381), we learn about the “Presence of Mary in the Eucharist”:

“We must not see her presence there as the presence of Christ.  The consecration effects the Real Presence of the Christ of Glory in the act of His Sacrifice under the appearance of bread and wine, with His Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity.  Nothing of the kind is true in Mary’s humanity.  Yet the Presence of Jesus brings with it in some way the presence of His Mother….

The Christ Who becomes present on the altar is the same Christ Who took from Mary His Body and Blood of the Eucharistic Sacrifice that are given as nourishment to us.  The reality of the Word made flesh can be perceived only in its twofold relation of Son:  the one according to which He is eternally engendered by the Father and the one according to which He was begotten in time by Mary.

Hence, our faith in the Eucharistic Christ includes a background reference to His Mother according to the flesh:  Ave verum Corpus natum de Maria – Hail true Body born of the Virgin Mary!”

I have found an article at Catholic Tradition which you may enjoy reading when you have time, as it gives further insights into this subject.