Suffering: The Appalling Benefactress, Part II

Reflections_for_Lent_3_3-e1488146263943 Suffering: The Appalling Benefactress, Part IIOnly on the God-Man did she lavish all that was most exquisite in her armory. His capacity for suffering exceeded all that she had known. She crept towards Him on that awful night, when, alone, forsaken in a garden, He took upon Himself the sins of the world, and, having embraced Him, she gained a grandeur that was never hers till then. So terrible was she that at her touch He swooned. His agony was His betrothal to her.

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She filled His cup with the sole blandishments that were hers to offer—atrocious and super-human torments—and as a faithful spouse she devoted herself to Him and never left Him again till the end. Mary, and Magdalene, and the holy women, were not able to follow Him everywhere, but she accompanied Him to the Pretorium, to Herod, to Pilate. She counted up the thongs of the whips, she made sure that the thorns were prickly, that the gall was bitter, that the lancet and the nails were sharp.

But when the supreme moment had come, when Mary and Magdalene and Saint John stood weeping at the foot of the Cross, and Christ gave up the ghost, and the Church came forth in floods of blood and water from the heart of the Victim, that was the end. Christ, unmoved, escaped forever from the embrace of Sorrow, but Sorrow was rehabilitated, redeemed, cleared forever by His death.

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As much decried as had been the Messiah, in Him she was raised. Her mission was ratified and ennobled, and, henceforth, she was comprehensible to Christians. Until the end of time she was to be loved by souls appealing to her for help in the expiation of sin, and loved, too, in memory of the Passion of Christ.

Suffering: the Appalling Benefactress, Part I