I will illustrate what I may now venture, without fear of being misunderstood, to call the unnecessary prodigality of the Precious Blood by the manner and circumstances in and under which it was shed during the Three-and-Thirty Years.
And we shall be most closely following the mind of the Church, if we select, as our examples, the Seven Blood-sheddings, which are put before us as the objects of indulgenced devotions.
There has been some variety in the enumeration of the Seven Blood-sheddings by different holy persons, though the difference has been little more than one of division. The enumeration which we shall follow is the one approved and indulgenced by Pius the Seventh. The Seven are the Circumcision, the Agony, the Scourging, the Crowning with Thorns, the Way of the Cross, the Crucifixion, and the Piercing of the Sacred Heart.
There is no doubt a divine intention in these particular seven mysteries. We shall find that they illustrate in a most complete and touching manner the spirit of the Precious Blood. While they are like each other, they are also different.
They have that mixture of likeness and of difference, which so often makes up the beauty of divine works.