The piercing of the side of Jesus and His descent from the Cross
The soldiers therefore came; and they broke the legs of the first,
and of the other that was crucified with him. But after they were
come to Jesus, when they saw that he was already dead, they did not
break his legs. But one of the soldiers with a spear opened his side,
and immediately there came out blood and water. And he that saw it,
hath given testimony, and his testimony is true. And he knoweth that
he saith true; that you also may believe.
For these things were done, that the scripture might be fulfilled:
You shall not break a bone of him. And again another scripture saith:
They shall look on him whom they pierced.
Pray one Our Father and 7 Hail Marys after meditating on the Dolor
I will pour out on the house of David and on the
inhabitants of Jerusalem a spirit of mercy and
supplication, so that when they look on him whom
they have thrust through, they will mourn for him
as one mourns for an only child, and they will grieve
for him as one grieves over a firstborn.
There came out blood and water, for only a
few drops of blood remained, and those also
the Saviour wished to shed, in order to show
that he had no more blood to give us.
The injury of that stroke was offered to Jesus, but the pain
was inflicted on Mary. The holy Fathers
explain this to be the very sword predicted to the Virgin by
St. Simeon; a sword, not of iron, but of grief,which pierced
through her blessed soul in the heart of Jesus, where it always dwelt.
Thus, among others, St. Bernard says: The spear which opened
his side passed through the soul of the Virgin, which could not
be torn from the heart of Jesus. And the divine mother herself
revealed the same to St. Bridget, saying: "When the spear was
drawn out, the point appeared red with blood; then I felt as if
my heart were pierced when I saw the heart of my most dear Son
pierced." The angel told St. Bridget, that such were the sufferings
of Mary, that she was saved from death only by the miraculous power of God.
The Virgin herself revealed to St. Bridget that she closed the eyes
of her Son, when he was taken down from the cross, but she could not
close his arms. Jesus Christ giving us to understand by this, that he
desired to remain with open arms to receive all penitent sinners who return to him.
V. Incline unto my aid, O God!
R. O Lord, make haste to help me!
Pray Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit as it was in the beginning is
now and ever shall be world without end, Amen
I am compassionate to thee, O sorrowful Mother Mary, on account of the anguish inflicted upon
thy tender heart by the thrust of the lance that opened the side of Jesus and pierced His Most
Adorable Heart. O dearest Mother, through this vicarious transfixion of thy own heart, implore for me the
Virtue of Brotherly Love and the Gift of Understanding.
Pray one Hail Mary
Deposition of Christ from the Cross (detail) by Pietro Lorenzetti; 1320; Lower Church, San Francesco, Assisi
The Seven Dolors of the Blessed Virgin Mary - Sixth Sorrow - The piercing of the side of Jesus and His descent from the Cross
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