Saved from Hell by the Prayer: Stabat Mater

In his book Glories of Mary, Saint Alphonsus Liguori relates an impressive story about the power of one of the most beautiful prayers ever written, the Stabat Mater, a prayer to the Sorrowful Mother.
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In the city of Cesena, in beautiful Emilia-Romagna, Northern Italy, there were two men who were great friends. They were also great sinners, leading a life far from the precepts of the Gospel and the Ten Commandments.
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One of them, Bartholomew, despite his wickedness, had acquired (probably when younger), the habit of daily reciting the Stabat Mater in honor of Mary’s sorrows.
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One day, as he recited this prayer, he suddenly had a vision in which he and his friend were immersed in a lake of fire. Then, he saw the Blessed Mother, who, taking him by the hand, pulled him out of the fiery pit saying: “Because of the prayer you said daily to me, I have prayed to my Son for you. He is ready to forgive you, if you are ready to ask pardon of Him.”
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Then the vision vanished.
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Soon after, Bartholomew received the dire news that his friend had been shot and killed. He now had no doubt that what he had seen was true.
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Leaving the world and all its temptations behind, Bartholomew entered the order of Capuchins, led a life of austerity and virtue and died a saint.
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The Stabat Mater
At the cross her station keeping 
stood the mournful Mother weeping, 
close to Jesus to the last.
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Through her heart, His sorrow sharing, 
all His bitter anguish bearing 
now at length the sword had passed.
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Oh, how sad and sore distressed 
was that Mother highly blessed, 
of the sole-begotten One!
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Christ above in torment hangs, 
she beneath beholds the pangs 
of her dying, glorious Son.
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Is there one who would not weep,
whelmed in miseries so deep, 
Christ’s dear Mother to behold?
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Can the human heart refrain 
from partaking in her pain, 
in that Mother’s pain untold?
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Bruised, derided, cursed, defiled, 
she beheld her tender Child 
all with bloody scourges rent.
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For the sins of His own nation, 
saw Him hang in desolation, 
till His spirit forth He sent.
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O sweet Mother! fount of love! 
Touch my spirit from above, 
make my heart with thine accord.
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Make me feel as thou hast felt; 
make my soul to glow and melt 
with the love of Christ, my Lord.
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Holy Mother! pierce me through, 
in my heart each wound renew 
of my Savior crucified.
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Let me share with thee His pain, 
who for all our sins was slain, 
who for me in torments died.
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Let me mingle tears with thee, 
mourning Him who mourned for me, 
all the days that I may live.
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By the Cross with thee to stay, 
there with thee to weep and pray, 
is all I ask of thee to give.
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Virgin of all virgins blest!, 
Listen to my fond request: 
let me share thy grief divine;
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Let me, to my latest breath, 
in my body bear the death 
of that dying Son of thine.
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Wounded with His every wound, 
steep my soul till it hath swooned, 
in His very Blood away;
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Be to me, O Virgin, nigh, 
lest in flames I burn and die, 
in His awful Judgment Day.
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Christ, when Thou shalt call me hence, 
be Thy Mother my defense, 
be Thy Cross my victory;
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While my body here decays, 
may my soul Thy goodness praise, 
safe in paradise with Thee. Amen.

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