Way of the Cross: Stabat Mater

The "Stabat Mater" (the "Mother was Standing") is a 13th-century Catholic hymn about Mary's pain at the foot of her Son's cross. "The message of the Stabat Mater focuses on the spiritual and emotional bond, which unites Mary and all Christians to the death of her Son on the cross." The Stabat Mater was introduced into the liturgy gradually until 1727 when it was prescribed as a sequence for the "Mass of the Seven Sorrows of Mary" on Sept. 15. It has been retained as an optional sequence for Sept. 15 and as the hymn for the Office of Readings, Morning Prayer and Evening Prayer in the new Liturgy of Hours. Its popularity is reflected by its use in the the stations of the cross. To learn more, visit the International Marian Research Institute.