The Paradox of Joy and Pain Co-existing

“Only the joy that stands the test of pain and is stronger than afflictions is authentic.”

                                Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger (Pope Benedict XVI)

For Reflection:             

Consider the paradox of joy and pain co-existing. What joy might Mary have been experiencing at the foot of the Cross even in the midst of her great suffering? How might this joy help her to stand there? Recall a time when you were experiencing a suffering marked with an underlying joy. How did it help you to stand there – actually or metaphorically? Can you identify the joy in her current sorrow – what is it? How does it help you to stand?

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