The devotion to the Seven Sorrows of Mary, otherwise known as the Seven Dolors, was approved by Pope Pius VII in 1815. The feast day of Our Lady of Sorrows is September 15th. Isn’t it interesting how we have devotions to Mary’s Sorrows? It is, and they’re all backed by the Bible:
- Simeon’s Prophecy (Luke 2:34-35)
- The Flight into Egypt (Matthew 2:13-14)
- The Loss of Jesus in the Temple (Luke 2:43-45)
- The Meeting of Mary and Jesus on the Way to Calvary (Luke 23:27)
- The Crucifixion and Death of Jesus (John 19:18-30)
- The Piercing of the Side of Jesus, and His Descent from the Cross (John 19:34, John 19:38-40)
- The Burial of Jesus (John 19:41-42)
How and when did this devotion start anyway? It was revealed by our Mother to St. Bridget of Sweden (1303-1373). Our Lady lamented about Her Sorrows that “the greater part of the world lived in forgetfulness of them: ‘I look around at all who are on earth, to see if by chance there are any who pity Me, and meditate upon My Sorrows; and I find that there are very few. Therefore, My daughter, though I am forgotten by many, at least do you not forget Me; consider My anguish, and imitate, as far as you can, My grief.’”
The purpose of the Devotion of the Seven Sorrows is to promote union with the sufferings of Christ through union with the special suffering that Our Lady endured because she is the Mother of God. By uniting ourselves with both the Passion of Christ and His holy Mother, we enter into Jesus’ Heart and honor Him greatly. He is more honored because we have so honored His Mother.
Before Pope Pius VII’s formal approval, the Servite Order had permission in 1668 to celebrate the Feast of the Seven Dolors because the Order was instrumental in popularizing the Seven Sorrows Devotion.
We’re guessing now you’re wondering how exactly we’re meant to carry out this devotion. You can find a guide HERE (pages 11-24) or HERE. There’s also a really helpful APP available on iOS and for Android devices.
Our Lady also directly revealed to St. Bridget the seven amazing graces granted by her Son for all those who daily pray seven Hail Mary’s while meditating on her seven dolors and tears:
- I will grant peace to their families.
- They will be enlightened about the Divine mysteries.
- I will console them in their pains and I will accompany them in their work.
- I will give them as much as they ask for as long as it does not oppose the adorable will of my Divine Son or the sanctification of their souls.
- I will defend them in their spiritual battles with the infernal enemy and I will protect them at every instant of their lives.
- I will visibly help them at the moment of their death, they will see the face of their Mother.
- I have obtained this Grace from my Divine Son, that those who propagate this devotion to my tears and dolors, will be taken directly from this earthly life to eternal happiness since all their sins will be forgiven and my Son and I will be their eternal consolation and joy.
Benefits of the Devotion to the Mother of Sorrows
- To realize the value of a soul, worth the supreme Sacrifice on Calvary.
- To work for souls, by evangelization, duty to life’s duties, and
prayer for sinners.
- To pray always, in a life of union with God; whoever has a heart similar to Jesus’ and Mary’s hearts, will work for the salvation of souls.