Teaching Kids About Our Lady of Sorrows
On September 15th each year, the Church celebrates the Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows, a day for prayer and reflection on the distinct sorrows that the Blessed Virgin Mary endured, such as the flight to Egypt or the separation from Jesus before finding him again at the temple.
The greatest of these sufferings, however, is undoubtedly the sorrow Mary felt while beholding the crucifixion and death of her son.
The experiences of Mary remind us that we are not alone in our experiences of sorrow. Reflecting and praying with these sorrows can be a beautiful way to find reassurance in our own struggles and in the struggles that the young people we walk with have in their daily lives.
Below, you’ll find a few prayers that will help you reflect more deeply on the mysteries of Our Lady of Sorrows and embrace the love found there.
If you’d like to download these prayers as a PDF in your classroom, you can click here.
Let Us Pray
Mary, Mother of Sorrows, pray for us. The suffering of those we care about hurts us deeply.
When we see the sufferings of those around us, we may want to turn away or change the subject. We may even avoid someone who is distraught because we don’t know what to say.
Mary, Mother of God, you never turned away as your Son suffered greatly. You met Jesus on the road as he carried his cross, and you remained with your Son until he died.
Mary, pray with us so that we may open our hearts to the suffering of others and help them carry their burdens. Comfort us, Holy Mother, as we feel the pain of others, and help us to remember your example as you stood at the foot of the cross and received the body of your Son, Jesus Christ.
The feast we know as Our Lady of Sorrows was once called Our Lady of Compassion. Compassion means we feel the pain of others. In fact, the word compassion comes from two Latin words meaning “to sympathize” and “to suffer.”
As we grow in Christian charity, our compassion reaches beyond those individuals we know personally. Our compassion extends outward to members of our community and even the whole world. Compassion is much more than just a feeling—it leads us to respond to the suffering of others.
As their pain becomes our pain, we are compelled to help in whatever way we can.
Let us pray
Lord Jesus, we ask today that you help us to grow in compassion for others.
Your Mother’s heart was pierced when she witnessed your suffering. Make us willing to share in the suffering of those around us. Grant us the courage and grace to spend time with the people we love when they face loss or despair.
Lord Jesus, show us how to help ease the suffering of people beyond our immediate circle, such as those in our community who struggle with the effects of discrimination, poverty, or illness. Make us aware of the needs of the world beyond our own doors. Show us how to reach out to victims of injustice, violence, or famine, no matter where they live.
Lord Jesus, fill us with compassion and let this awareness bear fruit. Inspire us to do your will, so we can help to build a world where human needs are met and where those who suffer find comfort. We ask this in your holy name.