the blessings of godly sorrow
“There is your mother.” —John 19:27
Today we celebrate the memorial of Our Lady of Sorrows. Mary, the Sorrowful Mother, endured many sorrows in the course of her earthly life (see Lk 2:48), often depicted in devotions such as the Seven Sorrows of Mary. In the present secular culture, there is a widespread lack of sorrow for sin. Instead, there is pride, arrogance, and contempt for the very concept of sin.
There is such a thing as godly sorrow, “a sorrow that came from God” (2 Cor 7:9). “Indeed, sorrow for God’s sake produces a repentance without regrets, leading to salvation, whereas worldly sorrow brings death” (2 Cor 7:10). “Just look at the fruit of this sorrow which stems from God” (2 Cor 7:11): a holy zeal rather than apathy, readiness to defend oneself from spiritual warfare rather than allowing the devil to run rampant in the world, an ardent desire to restore the balance of justice rather than an acceptance of injustice, and innocence in place of guilt (2 Cor 7:11).
A godly sorrow for sin leads to a reduction in sin, an increased love and worship of God, a corresponding desire to make reparation for sin, an increase of justice, peace, humility, holiness, and righteousness. Additionally, it leads to blessings for those who grieve sin. Those who mourned Israel’s sin and iniquities were spared from destruction (see Ez 9:4ff). Jesus Himself said: “Blessed too are the sorrowing, they shall be consoled” (Mt 5:4).
From the cross, Jesus commands us to receive Mary as our mother (Jn 19:27). Receive Mary into your home as your mother (Jn 19:27). Welcome godly sorrow and its blessings.
Prayer: “My Mother, share Thy grief with me, and let me bear Thee company to mourn Thy Jesus’ death with Thee.”
Promise: “This Child is destined to be the downfall and the rise of many in Israel, a sign that will be opposed.” —Lk 2:34
Praise: For years, Brenda has prayed the Servite Rosary daily, meditating on the Seven Sorrows of Mary.
Reference: (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)
Rescript: In accord with the Code of Canon Law, I hereby grant the Nihil Obstat for One Bread, One Body covering the period August 1, 2023 through September 30, 2023. Reverend Steve J. Angi, Vicar General, Archdiocese of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, Ohio January 4, 2023
The Nihil Obstat ("Permission to Publish") is a declaration that a book or pamphlet is considered to be free of doctrinal or moral error. It is not implied that those who have granted the Nihil Obstat agree with the contents, opinions, or statements expressed.