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Prayed on Tuesdays and Fridays, Daily from Ash Wednesday to Easter Sunday
The Gospels give great prominence to the sorrowful mysteries of Christ. From the beginning Christian piety, especially the Lenten devotion of the Way of the Cross, has focused on the individual moments of the Passion, realizing that here is found the culmination of the revelation of God’s love an d the source of our salvation. The Rosary selects certain moments from the passion, inviting the faithful to contemplate them in their hearts and to relive them.”
Apostolic Letter of Pope John Paul II, “On the Most Holy Rosary”- “Rosarium Virginis Mariae”, October 16, 2002 at 30.
First Sorrowful Mystery: The agony in the Garden
“Then Jesus went with them to a place called Gethsemane, and he said to his disciples, ‘Sit here, while I go yonder and pray.’ And talking with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, he began to be sorrowful and troubled. Then he said to them, ‘My soul is very sorrowful, even to death; remain here, and watch with me.’ And going a little farther he fell on his face and prayed, ‘My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will'” (Mt 26:36-39)
“Such a battle and such a victory become possible only through prayer. It is by his prayer that Jesus vanquishes the Tempter, both at the outset of his public mission and in the ultimate struggle of his agony” (CCC, 2849).
Second Sorrowful Mystery: The scourging at the pillar.
“Then Pilate took Jesus and scourged him. And the soldiers plaited a crown of thorns, and put it on his head, and arrayed him in a purple robe; they came up to him, saying, ‘Hail, King of the Jews!’ and struck him with their hands” (Jn 19:1-3).
“Jesus’ sufferings took their historical, concrete form from the fact that he was ‘rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes’ (Mk 8:31), who ‘handed him to the Gentiles to be mocked and scourged and crucified’ (Mt 20:19)” (CCC, 572).
Third Sorrowful Mystery: The crowning with thorns.
“Then the soldiers of the governor took Jesus into the praetorium, and they gathered the whole battalion before him. And they stripped him and put a scarlet robe upon him, and plaiting a crown of thorns they put it on his head, and put a reed in his right hand. And kneeling before him they mocked him, saying, ‘Hail, King of the Jews!'” (Mt 27:27-29).
“It is love ‘to the end’ (Jn 13:1) that confers on Christ’s sacrifice its value as redemption and reparation, as atonement and satisfaction. He knew and loved us all when he offered his life” (CCC, 616).
Fourth Sorrowful Mystery: The carrying of the cross.
“And they compelled a passer-by, Simon of Cyrene, who was coming in from the country, the father of Alexander and Rufus, to carry his cross. And they brought him to the place called Golgotha (which means the place of a skull)” (Mk 15:21-22).
“By accepting in his human will that the Father’s will be done, he accepts his death as redemptive, for ‘he himself bore our sins in his body on the tree’ ( 1 Pt 2:24)” (CCC, 612).
Fifth Sorrowful Mystery: The crucifixion.
“And when they came to the place which is called The Skull, there they crucified him, and the criminals, one on the right and one on the left. And Jesus said, ‘Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do’…
It was now about the sixth hour, and there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour, while the sun’s light failed; and the curtain of the temple was torn in two. Then Jesus, crying with a loud voice, said, ‘Father, into thy hands I commit my spirit!’ And having said this he breathed his last” (Lk 23:33-46).
“Christ died for our sins in accordance with the scriptures’ (1 Cor 15:3)” (CCC, 619).