The First Sorrowful Mystery: The Agony in the Garden
On the night of the Last Supper, Jesus takes his closest disciples to the garden of Gethsemane to pray. While they sleep, he agonises over the choice he has to make: His will, or God’s. This agony is enough to make him sweat blood. In the end he says, “Not my will, but yours be done”. Let this be our prayer.
Fruit of the mystery: Alignment of our will with God’s
- Jesus comes with his disciples to Gethsemane: “Stay here, while I go yonder and pray.”
- Entering the garden with Peter, James, and John, Jesus prays, “My soul is sorrowful unto death.”
- Jesus sees the sins of all mankind, whose guilt He has taken upon Himself.
- He sees the wrath of the Father which His sufferings must appease.
- So great is his anguish that His sweat becomes as drops of blood falling to the ground.
- An angel appears to Him from heaven to strengthen Him.
- “Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from Me; yet, not My will but Yours be done.”
- Finding the disciples asleep: “Could you not watch one hour with me?”
- Jesus is betrayed by Judas, cruelly bound and led away.
- Father, by the merits of the agony of Jesus in the Garden, have mercy on us and on the whole world.
The Second Sorrowful Mystery: The Scourging at the Pillar
Pilate, finding no fault with Jesus, decides to have him scourged to appease the Jews. He is then repeatedly and mercilessly struck with a whip until his body was a mess of open wounds. He did this for us.
Fruit of the mystery: Purity
- Jesus is taken before the High Priest where He is falsely accused, buffeted and insulted.
- The Jewish leaders take Jesus before Pilate, for only he can impose the death penalty.
- The robber, Barabbas, is preferred to Jesus.
- Pilate can “find no cause in Him”, yet to appease the Jews, he orders Jesus to be scourged.
- The scourge is made of leather thongs to which are attached small sharp bones.
- Jesus is bound to a pillar and cruelly scourged until His whole body is covered with deep wounds.
- The Lamb of God offers His suffering for the sins of mankind.
- Jesus suffers so much in His sacred flesh to satisfy, especially, for sins of the flesh.
- The prophesy of Isaiah is fulfilled: “He was wounded for our iniquities, He was bruised for our sins.”
- Father, by the merits of Jesus in this painful scourging, have mercy on us and on the whole world.
The Third Sorrowful Mystery: The Crowning With Thorns
After the Creator and King was scourged by his creation, he was subjected to torment with a crown of thorns pushed into his head. He was mocked and spat upon. He did this for us.
Fruit of the mystery: Courage
- Pilate asks, “Are You a king?” Jesus answers: “I am a King, but My kingdom is not of this world.”
- In the praetorium, the soldiers place an old purple robe on Jesus in mockery of His claim to be a king.
- They fashion a crown out of thorns, and forcefully press it down upon His head.
- In His bound hands they place a reed, as a sceptre, in mockery of His kingship.
- Kneeling before Him in derision, they spit on Him, and cry out: “Hail, King of the Jews!”
- Taking the reed from His hand they strike Him on the head, driving the thorns more deeply into His scalp.
- Pilate brings Jesus before the people, hoping His pitiful sight will soften them: “Behold the man!”
- Their response: “Crucify Him! Crucify Him!”
- Our Blessed Lord submitted to this terrible humiliation to make reparation for our pride.
- Father, by the merits of this painful humiliation, have mercy on us and on the whole world.
The Fourth Sorrowful Mystery: The Carrying of the Cross
Jesus is then made to carry what will become the instrument of his death to the Mount of Crucifixion. He is further ridiculed and tormented, and is without strength after the punishments he has already endured. He did this for us.
Fruit of the mystery: Patience
- One condemned to death by crucifixion is forced to carry the cross to the place of execution.
- The suffering of Jesus is intense as the cross is laid on His bruised and wounded back and shoulders.
- Weak and exhausted from loss of blood, lack of food and rest, Jesus falls three times under the cross.
- Jesus meets His afflicted Mother causing untold anguish in the Hearts of Son and Mother.
- The countenance of Jesus is disfigured with blood and sweat, with dust and spittle.
- Veronica wipes His face, leaving on her towel the image of His countenance.
- Fearing that Jesus might die on the way, the soldiers force Simon of Cyrene to carry the cross behind Jesus.
- Jesus speaks to weeping women; “Weep not for Me, but for yourselves and your children.”
- “If anyone is to be My disciple, let him take up his cross and follow Me.”
- Father, by the merits of this painful journey to Calvary, have mercy on us and on the whole world.
The Fifth Sorrowful Mystery: The Crucifixion
Jesus, our Lord, the One who loved us so much that he created us from nothing, is crucified like a criminal. His hands and feet are pierced and he is strung up for all the world to see. What a horrible sight, what a horrible day. He did this for us.
Fruit of the mystery: Self-denial
- The hands and feet of Jesus are nailed to the cross in the presence of His afflicted Mother.
- “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.”
- “This day you will be with Me in paradise.”
- “Woman, behold your Son. Son, behold your Mother.”
- “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?”
- “I thirst.”
- “It is finished.”
- “Father, into Your hands I commend My spirit.”
- The side of Jesus is pierced with a lance. His body is taken down and placed in the arms of His Mother.
- Father, by the merits of the crucifixion and death of Jesus, have mercy on us and on the whole world.