Santuário San Rafael Ascension Catholic church

An independent ministry in the Catholic Tradition























Seven Dolorous Mysteries


1.  The Prophecy of Simeon:  Mary hears that the path of redemption involves sorrow to the soul.  And Simeon blessed them, and said to Mary: Behold this child is set for the fall, and for the rising of many in Israel, and for a sign which shall be contradicted;  And a sword shall pierce thy own soul, that, out of many hearts, true thoughts may be revealed.  Lk 2:34-35


2. The Flight into Egypt as Refugees:  Earthly powers resist the birth of consciousness.  “Behold an angel of the Lord appeared in sleep to Joseph, saying: Arise, and take the child and his mother, and fly into Egypt: and be there until I shall tell thee. For it will come to pass that Herod will seek the child to destroy him.  Who arose, and took the child and his mother by night, and retired into Egypt: and he was there until the death of Herod: That it might be fulfilled which the Lord spoke by the prophet, saying: Out of Egypt have I called my son.  Mt. 2:13-15


3. The Loss of the Child Jesus:  Mary transcends the earthly relationship with Jesus through consciousness of the universal mission and through the grace of non-attachment.   And it came to pass, that, after three days, they found him in the temple, sitting in the midst of the doctors, hearing them, and asking them questions. And all that heard him were astonished at his wisdom and his answers.  And seeing him, they wondered. And his mother said to him: Son, why hast thou done so to us? behold thy father and I have sought thee sorrowing. And he said to them: How is it that you sought me? did you not know, that I must be about my father's business? And they understood not the word that he spoke unto them. Lk 46-50. 


4. The loneliness of rejection by friends and neighbors:  Mary realizes the emptiness of trying to find meaning in the approval of others.  “And coming into his own country, he taught in the synagogues, so that they wondered and said:  How came this man by this wisdom and miracles?  Is not this the carpenter's son? Is not his mother called Mary, and his brethren James, and Joseph, and Simon, and Jude:  And his sisters, are they not all with us? Whence therefore hath he all these things?  And they were scandalized in this regard. But Jesus said to them: A prophet is not without honour, save in his own country, and in his own house.  And he wrought not many miracles there, because of their unbelief.  Mt. 13:54-58


5. The Crucifixion:  Mary suffers the sorrow of watching her child executed.  “Now there stood by the cross of Jesus, his mother, and his mother's sister, Mary of Cleophas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus therefore had seen his mother and the disciple standing whom he loved, he saith to his mother: Woman, behold thy son. After that, he saith to the disciple: Behold thy mother. And from that hour, the disciple took her to his own.”  Jn 19:25-27


6. Piercing and PietàMary witnesses the utter emptiness of hope, and the fullness of sorrow. Then the local authorities, (because it was the Passover) that the bodies might not remain on the cross on the Sabbath day, besought Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away.  But after they were come to Jesus, when they saw that he was already dead, they did not break his legs. But one of the soldiers with a spear opened his side, and immediately there came out blood and water. And he that saw it, hath given testimony, and his testimony is true. And he knoweth that he saith true; that you also may believe. Jn 19:31-35


7. The Burial of Jesus.  Mary faces the darkness of death and the tomb.  “They took therefore the body of Jesus, and bound it in linen cloths, with the spices, as the manner of the Judeans  is to bury.  Now there was in the place where he was crucified, a garden; and in the garden a new tomb, wherein no one yet had been laid.  Therefore, because of the Passover, they laid Jesus there, because the tomb was nigh at hand.  Jn 19:40-42.


Novena Prayer

In Honor of The Mater Dolorosa


O, God, Come to my assistance.

O Lord, make haste to help me. 

Glory to you, O God, Living One, Word, and Spirit.

Now and for all ages and aeons.  Amen. 


I.   I grieve with thee, O Mary most sorrowful, in the affliction of thy tender heart at the prophesy of the holy and aged Simeon.  Dear Mother, by thy heart so afflicted, obtain for me the virtue of humility.  Amen. 


II.   I grieve with thee, O Mary most sorrowful, in the anguish of thy most affectionate heart during the flight into Egypt and thy sojourn there.  Dear Mother, by thy heart so troubled, obtain for me the virtue of solidarity, that I might be filled with compassion for those who must live as refugees in this world, fleeing for their lives, and that I may act in the cause of justice for all refugees, travelers, strangers, and pilgrims.  Amen. 


III.  I grieve with thee, O Mary most sorrowful, in all the anxiety which tried thy troubled heart at the loss of thy dear Jesus.  Dear Mother, by thy heart so full of anguish, obtain for me the virtue of detatchment, that I might know the secret of surrendering the things of this earth.  Amen.  


IV.  I grieve with thee, O Mary most sorrowful, in the consternation of thy heart at realizing the loneliness required of the spiritual path, when thy friends and neighbors no longer understood the pain of thy journey, and did not recognize the new life growing in thy soul.  Dear Mother, by thy heart so troubled and sad, help me live the virtue of true love for all in my community.  Amen. 


V.   I grieve with thee, O Mary most sorrowful, in the martyrdom which thy generous heart endured standing before the cross as witness to the agony of thy child Jesus.  Dear Mother, by thy heart thusly afflicted, help me share in the profound wisdom which became thy font of strength in such a moment of horror.  Amen.


VI.  I grieve with thee, O Mary most sorrowful, in the wounding of thy compassionate heart, when the side of Jesus was struck by a lance, and the final emptiness of human life was revealed.  Dear mother, by thy heart thus wounded, pour into me the blood of true life and the water of true love.  Amen. 


VII.  I grieve with thee, O Mary most sorrowful, for the pangs that wrenched thy most loving heart when facing the darkness of the tomb of Jesus.  Dear mother, by thy heart sunk in desolation, help me to recognize the wisdom and transforming power of leaving the illusion of self in the womb of Earth, so that we may rise in newness of life.  Amen. 


Pray for us, O Mother most sorrowful!

That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ. 


Seven Dolorous Mysteries

As prayed on the Seraphic Rosary (Franciscan Crown)

Our Lady of Sorrows

O Madre de  los Dolores

Ora por nosotros

The Rosary of Sorrows

Seven Dolorous Mysteries of the Rosary as prayed on the seven decade

Franciscan Crown

How to Pray the

Rosary of Sorrows

1. Using beads for the Franciscan Crown (a rosary of seven decades), hold the cross and make a Sign of the Cross:  +In the Name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.  Amen.  May substitute an alternative formula like “In the Name of God, the Living One, Word, and Spirit.  Amen.”

2.   Then form a specific intention, and take a moment to focus on it:  I offer this Rosary for the following intention (name your intention) and ask God’s blessing on it. 

3.  Then, announce the First Mystery and pray the Our Father on the single bead just before the medallion.  Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name.  Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.  Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us.  And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.  Amen.  Many people prefer to use an alternative prayer to affirm that God is beyond all gender.  One such prayer might be:  Our Mother, with us on earth, holy is your name, your true reign come, your will be done, within us, as it is within you.  Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our sins, as we forgive those whose sins have oppressed us, and lead us not into confusion, but enlighten us with your wisdom.  Amen. 

4. Pray one Hail Mary for each of the ten beads. Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee, blessed art thou amongst women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.  Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us* now , and at the hour of death.  Amen. 

*Traditional language adds “sinners.” 

5.  On the chain at the end of the decade, pray the Gloria Patri:  Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost, as it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end.  Amen.  Or an alternative formula:  Glory to you, O God, Living One, Word, and Spirit, now and for all ages and aeons.  Amen. 

6. On the single bead between the decades, announce the next Mystery and then pray the Our Father. Continue as in Step 3 for the remaining Mysteries.

7. After the last Mystery, pray one Hail Mary each on the fourth and third beads from the Cross to complete 72 years of Mary’s Life.

8.  Pray the Our Father and the Gloria Patri for the intentions of all Christians on the 2nd bead from the Cross.

9. Pray a Hail Mary on the single bead closest to the Cross.  Conclude with the Concluding Prayers.

10.  While praying each decade, focus on the divine  light which comes through each mystery. 


About Us

Contact Us


Divine Liturgy * Holy Eucharist



Reconciliation * Anointing of the Sick  * Confirmation



Related Links


Seven Signs Chaplet

Seven Signs 2

Christian Qabbalah

 St. Raphael Chaplet

Seven Glorious Mysteries of the Holy Rosary

About Bishop Roberto


Language and Sources

Rosary of St. Mary Magdalene

Seven Dolorous Mysteries of the Holy Rosary

Anaphora of the Holy Covenant

Common Text From Liturgy of the Deep Song

Holy Eucharist of Christ-Sophia

Christ-Sophia page 2

Baptisms, Quincieneras

Holy Wisdom


Mayan Calendar

Traditional Rosary

Traditional Latin Prayers for the Rosary and Other Devotions

Lectio Divina