The Lady Chapel VIII - Mary's sorrow

A few years back there was a marvelous phenomena at the Belle Vernon Holy Trinity Orthodox Church. Its icon (holy picture) of the Virgin Mary holding the Christ child was weeping a resinous substance that smelled like a rose perfume. To behold it touched your heart very greatly. Such is not uncommon, for at times of pending disaster or when the world becomes especially mean and wicked, icons weep in many, many places across the world. The statue of Our Lady of Walsingham at Charleroi where Scott and Laura lit their wedding candle has been studied by scientists in the past because it has been known to weep.

This recalls to me the appearance of St. Mary in 1846 to two little children, a boy and a girl who were out in the pastures tending the cows near the village of La Sallette in the French Alps. She wore a sun-like crown and was weeping as though she could not be consoled in her overwhelming grief.

To the children she said that she cried because great calamity would befall the world since Christianity had grown so lukewarm and careless in its service of the Savior. She spoke of her Son's arm being very heavy and ready to fall in judgment upon the world especially since so many used the Holy Names of Christ and God as common profanity rather than in reverent prayers. She then foretold of a great famine that would strike France as the crops would rot in the ground. Her prophecy came to pass and France suffered terribly in the years ahead.

As a young lady the girl who saw and heard the vision (Melanie) related: "The eyes of the most Holy Virgin, our sweet Mother, cannot be described in human language. To speak of them you would need a seraph [an angel of the highest order] ... you would need more than that, you would need the language of God Himself ... [Those eyes] appeared thousands of times more beautiful than the rarest brilliant diamonds or precious stones ... In her eyes you could see paradise ... They drew you to her ... the more I looked, the more I wanted to see..."

What, then, must be Paradise, that it can make someone that rapturously beautiful? Can we even begin to imagine how precious Christ can make our Cathedral souls!

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