July 9th is the Feast of Our Lady of the Atonement. This title embraces two mysteries of our faith: first, the atonement – the wonderful at-one-ment which was achieved by our Lord Jesus Christ as He shed His Most Precious Blood upon the Cross at Calvary, through which came the reconciliation of man with God, and of man with man, making us "at one" in His Sacred Heart; and second, the role of Our Lady in the atonement accomplished by God – her coöperation with the Divine Will at the annunciation, and her participation in her Son's sufferings and death as she stood at the foot of the Cross. The words which Simeon spoke to her came to pass: "Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel; and for a sign which shall be spoken against; (Yea, a sword shall pierce through thy own soul also,) that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed."
The crowning act of Redeeming Love – the Atonement upon the Cross – is the means whereby mankind finds salvation. There on the cross Jesus gave us the greatest gift – His precious life. There on the cross He gave His Blessed Mother to be our mother. There Mary stood, and there we stand next to her, at the foot of the Cross. We are children of the Atonement, and the Blessed Virgin Mary is Our Lady who bears witness to Christ's Atonement.