Sorrow builds a bridge to the world beyond. It leads us to the Garden of sorrows and bids us share in the Agony of Jesus. Sooner or later we find our own Gethsemane. But as we ponder these mysteries of the Rosary, we learn that we are never alone. Uniting our pain with that of Jesus, nothing will be lost. Nothing will be wasted. As the Divine Master commanded the disciples to gather up the fragments of bread in the wilderness, so he will send his angels to gather up the fragments of our broken lives. In the consoling words of the prophet Joel: The Lord, our God will restore to us the years which the locusts have eaten.
The Agony in the Garden
Father if it be possible let this chalice pass. Yet not my will but yours be done
In the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus poured out his agonising heart to the Father. It is a cry that echoes still, in the bodies and souls of those who are in pain. We read that Jesus was afraid of what lay ahead and that he prayed so hard, that his sweat became like drops of blood.
Lord, an angel came to comfort and to strengthen you for the struggle, so that you could drink the chalice to the dregs. I thank you for the angels of mercy --- the nurses and attendants who minister to me in my own agony. I thank you for the drugs and other medications that soothe my pain. I honour the physicians, the dieticians, the therapy people who are constantly there to help all who suffer. I pray for the many who linger in pain. I offer up my own distress, that in some way it may help to alleviate their agony.
The Scourging at the Pillar
We are healed by the punishment, he suffered, made whole by the blows he received.
Sin has covered the whole earth, and with it, has come pain and punishment. I may be an innocent victim myself. I may never have sinned or I may have truly repented. It is simply, that we are all part of the sinful race of Adam, and stand in need of redemption and divine healing.
Lord, I believe that your passion is a wondrous wealth of heavenly medication stored up in the reservoir of these Rosary mysteries. As I press my lips to your precious wounds I claim the promise of the Prophet Isaiah, that I am being healed by the punishment you suffered and made whole by the blows you received.
The Crowning with Thorns
He was treated harshly, but endured it humbly. He never said a word.
In this mystery we think of those who suffer in the mind and whose spirits are troubled.
Jesus was King and yet he was mocked and made little of. They spat on his lovely face and cursed him, that we might be saved from the curse of the evil one.
We pray in this mystery for those who suffer torture, persecution and imprisonment, especially those who suffer for their beliefs and for the rights of others.
We pray for the outcasts of society, for all who live on the margins of life, that through your scourging they may find dignity.
Lord Jesus, I offer the pains and the personal hurts I experience as some small service to fellow sufferers others along the way. Through your crowning with thorns grant to all of us, peace of mind and heart.
The Carrying of the Cross
Like a lamb about to be slaughtered, he never said a word.
Lord, help me to be silent when I want to grumble and complain. Every one around me has a cross to carry. I am not alone. I walk alongside friends and companions in pain. And you walk ahead of all of us, in the long procession of those who suffer. Faith tells us, that it a march to glory and to victory.
In this mystery, we weep for you as did the women of Jerusalem. We meet you face to face, as your Mother must have met you. Like Simon who helped to carry your cross, we offer the humble tribute of our own personal scourging and suffering. As St. Paul so mysteriously expressed it, we fill up in our own bodies what is wanting to your passion.
Despised and rejected, he endured suffering and pain, No one would even look at him.
Pain and drugs can shut out the light, and we experience something of the darkness which covered the earth on the day of Crucifixion. We cry in the darkness of our own desolation, as Jesus did: “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me.”
Dear Jesus we see you lifted up on the Cross with your Mother and the disciple whom you loved standing silently below. We listen to your dying words: “Behold you mother...”
In this mystery we accept the gift of your mother to be mother to us in our time of trial and trouble. O Mary, Nurse of the wounded Lamb of God, we draw strength from the continued care and consolation you bring us.