Saturday, September 13, 2008

Saturday - Day of Our Lady

Very beautiful meditation on the Passion of Our Lord narrated by Our Lady herself, very fitting spiritual reading for the coming Feast of the Cross Exaltation.

At that time, my Son was suffering, and as Judas the traitor approached He stooped towards him - for Judas was of low stature - giving him a kiss, saying: 'Friend, wherefore hast thou come?' And immediately some seized Him, others dragged Him by the hair, others defiled Him by spitting upon Him. Then my Son spoke, saying: 'I am reputed as a worm, which lies in winter as if dead, on which the passer-by spits and tramples. The Jews have this day treated me like a worm, because I was deemed most abject and unworthy of them.' (Lib 4, c:99).
When the time of my Son Passion arrived, His enemies seized Him, striking Him on His cheek and neck; and spitting upon Him, they mocked Him,. Then, led to the pillar, He stripped Himself, and Himself stretched His hands to the pillar, which His enemies, pitiless, bound. Now, while tied there He had no clothing, but stood as He was born, and suffered the shame of His nakedness. Then his enemies rose up, for the stood on all sides, His friends having fled, and they scourged His body, pure from all spot or sin. At the first blow, I, who stood nearest, fell as if dead, and on recovering my senses I beheld His body bruised and beaten to the very ribs, so that His ribs could be seen; and what was still more bitter, when the scourge was raised, His very flesh was furrowed by the thongs. And when my Son stood thus, all bloody, all torn, so that no soundness could be found in Him nor any spot to scourge, then one, his spirit roused within him, asked: "Will you slay Him thus unjudged?" and he immediately cut His bonds. Then my Son put on His clothes, and I beheld the spot where my Son's feet stood all full of blood, and I knew my Son's course by His footprints, for wherever He went, the earth seemed stained with blood; nor did they suffer Him to clothe Himself, but they compelled and urged Him to hasten.
Now, as my Son was led away like a robber, he wiped away the blood from His eyes. And when He was condemned, they gave Him His cross to bear. When He had carried it a short way, one came up and assumed it. Meanwhile, as my Son was going to the place of His Passion, some smote Him on the back, others struck Him in the face. And so violently and rudely was He struck that though I did not see the person striking, I distinctively heard the sound of the blow. And when I came with Him to the place of the Passion, I there beheld all the instruments prepared for His death. And my Son Himself , coming thither, divested Himself of His clothes, the attendants saying to each other: "These vestments are ours, nor can He have them again, that is condemned to death." Now, while my Son stood as naked as when He was born, one, running up, handed Him a cloth with which, exulting inwardly, he covered Him. Then His cruel executioners seized Him, and stretched Him on the cross. First they fixed His right hand to the beam, which was pierced with nails, and they transfixed His hand in the part where the bone was firmest. Then drawing His other hand with a rope, they affixed it in like manner to the cross. Then they crucified His right foot, and over it the left, with two nails, so that all the nerves and veins were extended and broken. This done, they fitted a crown of thorns to His head, which so acutely wounded the venerable head of my Son that His eyes were filled, His ears stopped up, with the blood that streamed down, and His whole beard matted with the gore. And as He stood thus pierced and bloody, condoling with me as I stood mourning, He looked with blood-stained eyes to John, my kinsman, and commended me to him.