Friends of the Rosary,
We read today in the Gospel (LK 2:22-35) that a prophet in the Temple called Simeon foretold Mary that a sword would pierce her heart.
At Christmas, as in the earthly life of the Virgin Mary, there is much joy but also much pain.
In the last four days, we reflected on St. Stephen, the first Christian martyr, and how he imitated Christ by dying painfully and forgiving his executioners. We also learn about the infant martyrs who were victims of a massacre two weeks after the birth of Christ.
Across history, an army of martyrs has been formed. Their death always has given rise to new Christians. These holy souls embraced their death, not as the end of everything, but rather the passage to immortal life.
Our Blessed Mother Mary also suffered an interior martyrdom. She shared the Passion of Christ and took Him in her arms after He was crucified. Mary felt the joy of the birth of Jesus and the anguish of His torture and death.
Professing Christianity demands the sacrifice and heroism of the martyrs. Tribulations and suffering are a source of victory, though for the moment they might seem to be a failure. We pray today the Sorrowful Mysteries.
[Written by Mikel A | The Rosary Network, New York]
We pray for many Catholics who maintain their fidelity to the true faith at the cost of grave sufferings. We admire their sacrifice and pray that they will have the strength to be courageous, patient, and perseverant. To be a witness is to be a martyr.