Private Stations of the Cross: Walking with Mary, Mother of Jesus
THE FIRST STATION: Jesus is Condemned to Die
From the time Joseph and I brought you to the Temple to be presented, I knew this day would come. Simeon and Anna told me that you were born to live and born to die for many. These last years your work has angered the Chief Priests - yet I never thought you would be put to death this way.
SECOND STATION: Jesus Takes Up His Cross
Oh no! Merciful God, no! Your body … is … beaten raw! I don’t think I can bear this. The tunic Elizabeth and I made for you is soaked with blood on your back and shoulders. The guards have lifted the cross on to your shoulder and let go ... ooooooh! SON!
THIRD STATION: Jesus Falls the First Time
When you were young, playing with your friends, you skinned your knee and got up again, giggling. After playing tug-of-war for the first time, you came to me with raw palms without a tear in your eye. Now you fall, without protection, driven into the ground, bleeding and weak.
FOURTH STATION: Jesus Meets His Afflicted Mother
Jesus – What can I do??? Your pain is mine. I love you, son. See that love in my eyes, as I see the surrender in yours.
FIFTH STATION: The Cross is Laid on Simon of Cyrene
I’m glad the soldiers have made the man carry your cross, even if their actions are not moved by compassion.
SIXTH STATION: A Woman Wipes the Face of Jesus
Veronica, bless you for your kindness. Clean the filth from his eyes. Touch him with kindness, if only through the cloth.
SEVENTH STATION: Jesus Falls a Second Time
BREAK HIS FALL!! We aren’t outside the walls of the city and you have fallen again. It tears at my heart to see you in this agony.
EIGHTH STATION: Jesus Meets the Women of Jerusalem
Pity us?? We will remember your work and life and sacrifice. We will recount your life to our children and our children's children.
NINTH STATION: Jesus Falls a Third Time
HE ISN'T MOVING!! -- wait, he is – barely. We have arrived at the place of execution. The soldiers finally pull the cross off your back and shoulders.
TENTH STATION: Jesus is Stripped of his Garments
My brave son! You wobble, staggering forward. Two soldiers jerk the tunic from your shoulders, dropping it to the ground; you are nearly knocked down. STOP LAUGHING! Oh, their sick comments on your nakedness pain and anger me! LEAVE HIM ALONE!! LEAVE MY BOY ALONE!!
ELEVENTH STATION: Jesus is Nailed to the Cross
Ah!!! Blow after blow, hammering into your flesh! Two soldiers steady your arms while a third smashes the mallet down on the spike. I can’t watch. I don’t need to. The sound of your painful cries and the cold clang of the metal sear into my soul.
TWELFTH STATION: Jesus Dies on the Cross
“It is finished.” John and Miriam in turn look at you through tears and try to console me. Your body, the body of my son, the Son of the living God, hangs lifelessly before me.
THIRTEENTH STATION: The Body of Jesus is Placed in the Arms of His Mother
I cradle you once more. My beloved son, my first born. Wiping the tears, sweat and blood from your face I see the features which once smiled, showed anger, laughed. Close your eyes. Rest.
FOURTEENTH STATION: Jesus is Laid in the Tomb
You said ‘It is finished’. You also said that this is not the end. I want to believe the promise that the love that came to me, the love you gave to others, will raise you again. Hear oh Israel, The Lord our God, The Lord is One.