By Christina Hermoso

Sunday, September 15, is the feast day of Our Lady of Sorrows (Mater Dolorosa), in solemn commemoration of the spiritual martyrdom of the Blessed Mother.


The feast is significantly observed a day after the Feast of the Holy Cross to signify the participation of the Blessed Virgin Mary in the Passion of her Son Jesus Christ.

In observance of the feast, Church officials encourage the faithful to recite seven Hail Marys and to reflect on the Seven Sorrows of Our Lady namely: 1. The Prophecy of Simeon in the Temple, 2. The Flight into Egypt, 3. The Carrying of the Cross on Mount Calvary, 5. The Crucifixion, 6. The Taking Down from the Cross, and the 7. The Burial of Jesus.

Devotion to the sorrows of Mary gave rise to the figure in Christian art of the Pieta, the sorrowing mother holding the lifeless Body of her Son. Initiated by the Servants of Mary in 1668, the feast was extended to the Universal Church by Pope Pius VIII in 1814.