Holy Family

Holy Family

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows

Good morning. As a marriage and family counselor I’d venture to say there is likely nothing more challenging than to respond to the grief of a parent. Fortunately I’m not called upon too often to assist parents in working through the loss of a child, yet it seems this task of “grief counselor” has increasingly been called for of late, perhaps as a result of the diminishing sense of community. John L. McKnight, in John Deere and the Bereavement Counselor, notes that the decreasing sense of community and the relinquishment of once felt sense of responsibility for neighbors and friends at the time of death has introduced a new field of mental health—the “grief counselor.” Grief has become a “commodity… rather than an opportunity for community.” I thought of this as I read through today’s Gospel for the Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows. It occurs to me that there is probably nothing more emotionally challenging then to endure the loss of a child. I can’t imagine anything more painful and any emotional pain more gripping than that which a parent feels at the loss of a child, or likewise when a child is in anguish or troubled with life. Today we pause to consider just this, the numerous pains our Blessed Mother felt in response to the trials and death of her Son and Our Lord. We are reminded today that as our Blessed Mother stood at the foot of the cross Our Lord hung suffering in response to our reluctance to reach out to our neighbors. In His words from the cross, in His request to His mother and the Apostle John, He is asking that we take care of one another. It is unfortunate that the growing influence of materialism in our society has many placing their own comfort and excess in front of their relationships and responsibilities for those relationships. As we stand at the foot of the cross today may we let go of those things which stand in the way of our reaching out to others in need. Make a great day!

Today we celebrate the Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows.

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