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Lent

The Way of the Cross

08 Mar 2019

The Way of the Cross is a traditional devotion in honour of the life, death and resurrection of Jesus. Known also as Stations of the Cross, Via Crucis, and Via Dolorosa, the Way of the Cross had its origins in the Holy Land, but it did not become popular around the world until the 17th Century. In a sense, the Way of the Cross is a mini-pilgrimage through the events that covered the final hours of Jesus’ life on earth. In most Catholic churches there are painted or carved images depicting the Way of the Cross.

ACT
Visit a Catholic Church and walk around the Stations of the Cross artworks praying the Way of the Cross – you may wish to use the below prayers and reflections.

This Way of the Cross is a combination of versions from St John Paul II and St Alphonsus Liguori

Opening Prayer

V. In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.
R. Amen.

Let us pray.

Father most holy, look upon the blood flowing from the Saviour’s pierced side; look upon the blood shed by the many victims of hatred, of war, of terrorism, and in your mercy, grant that the course of world events may unfold according to your will, in justice and in peace, and that your Church may devote herself with quiet confidence to your service and to the liberation of mankind. Through Christ our Lord.
R. Amen.

First Station: Jesus is condemned to death

ADORATION
V. We Adore You Oh Christ and We Bless You
R. Because By Your Holy Cross You Have Redeemed the World

SCRIPTURE
From the Gospel according to Mark 15:14-15
But the crowd shouted all the more, “Crucify him”. So Pilate, wishing to satisfy the crowd, released for them Barabbas; and having scourged Jesus, he delivered him to be crucified.

MEDITATION
Consider how Jesus, after having been scourged and crowned with thorns, was unjustly condemned by Pilate to die on the Cross.

PRAYER
My Jesus, it was not Pilate, it was my sins that condemned You to die. I beg You, by the merits of this sorrowful journey, to assist my soul in its journey toward eternity. I love You, my beloved Jesus; I love You more than myself; I repent with my whole heart for having offended You. Never permit me to separate myself from You again. Grant that I may love You always; and then do with me what You will.

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be…

Second Station: Jesus carries His cross

ADORATION
V. We Adore You Oh Christ and We Bless You
R. Because By Your Holy Cross You Have Redeemed the World

SCRIPTURE
From the Gospel according to Mark 15:20
After they had mocked him, they stripped him of the purple cloak, and put his own clothes on him. And they led him out to crucify him.

MEDITATION
Consider how Jesus, in making this journey with the Cross on His shoulders, thought of us, and for us offered to His Father the death He was about to undergo.

PRAYER
My beloved Jesus, I embrace all the tribulations You have destined for me until death. I beg You, by the merits of the pain You suffered in carrying Your Cross, to give me the necessary help to carry mine with perfect patience and resignation. I love You, Jesus my love; I repent of having offended You. Never permit me to separate myself from You again. Grant that I may love You always; and then do with me what You will.

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be…

Third Station: Jesus falls the first time

ADORATION
V. We Adore You Oh Christ and We Bless You
R. Because By Your Holy Cross You Have Redeemed the World

SCRIPTURE
From the Book of the Prophet Isaiah 53:4-6
Surely he has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed him stricken smitten by God, and afflicted. But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that made us whole, and with his bruises we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all.

MEDITATION
Consider this first fall of Jesus under His Cross. His flesh was torn by the scourges, His head crowed with thorns, and He had lost a great quantity of blood. He was so weakened that He could scarcely walk, and yet He had to carry this great load upon His shoulders. The soldiers struck Him rudely, and thus He fell several times in His journey.

PRAYER
My beloved Jesus, it is not the weight of the Cross, but my sins, which have made You suffer so much pain. By the merits of this first fall, deliver me from the misfortune of falling into mortal sin. I love You, O my Jesus, with my whole heart; I repent of having offended You. Never permit me to offend You again. Grant that I may love You always; and then do with me what You will.

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be…

Fourth Station: Jesus meet His Sorrowful Mother

ADORATION
V. We Adore You Oh Christ and We Bless You
R. Because By Your Holy Cross You Have Redeemed the World

SCRIPTURE
From the Gospel according to Luke 2:34-35, 51
Simeon said to Mary, his mother, “Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising of many in Israel, and for a sign of contradiction, that thoughts out of many hearts may be revealed. And a sword will pierce through your own soul also”… His mother kept all these things in her heart.

MEDITATION
Consider the meeting of the Son and the Mother, which took place on this journey. Jesus and Mary looked at each other, and their looks became as so many arrows to wound those hearts, which loved each other so tenderly.

PRAYER
My most loving Jesus, by the sorrow You experienced in this meeting, grant me the grace of a truly devoted love for Your most holy Mother. And you, my Queen, who were overwhelmed with sorrow, obtain for me by your intercession a continual remembrance of the Passion of your Son. I love You, Jesus, my love; I repent of ever having offended You. Never permit me to offend You again. Grant that I may love You always; and then do with me what You will.

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be…

Fifth Station: Simon helps Jesus to carry the Cross

ADORATION
V. We Adore You Oh Christ and We Bless You
R. Because By Your Holy Cross You Have Redeemed the World

SCRIPTURE
From the Gospel according to Mark 15:21-22
They compelled a passer-by, Simon of Cyrene, who was coming in from the country, the father of Alexander and Rufus, to carry his Cross. And they brought him to the place called Golgotha, which means the place of the skull.

MEDITATION
Consider how the Jews, seeing that at each step Jesus from weakness was on the point of expiring, and fearing that He would die on the way, when they wished Him to die the ignominious death of the Cross, constrained Simon the Cyrenian to carry the Cross behind our Lord.

PRAYER
My beloved Jesus, I will not refuse the Cross, as the Cyrenian did; I accept it, I embrace it. I accept in particular the death You have destined for me; with all the pains that may accompany it; I unite it to Your death, I offer it to You. You have died for love of me; I will die for love of You, and to please You. Help me by Your grace. I love You, Jesus my love; I repent of having offended You. Never permit me to offend You again. Grant that I may love you always; and then do with me what You will.

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be…

Sixth Station: Veronica wipes the face of Jesus

ADORATION
V. We Adore You Oh Christ and We Bless You
R. Because By Your Holy Cross You Have Redeemed the World

SCRIPTURE
From the Book of the Prophet Isaiah 53:2-3
He had no form or comeliness that we should look at him, and no beauty that we should desire him. He was despised and rejected by men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief and as one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not.

MEDITATION
Consider how the holy woman named Veronica, seeing Jesus so afflicted, and His face bathed in sweat and blood, presented Him with a towel, with which He wiped His adorable face, leaving on it the impression of His holy countenance.

PRAYER
My beloved Jesus, Your face was beautiful before, but in this journey it has lost all its beauty, and wounds and blood have disfigured it. My soul also was once beautiful, when it received Your grace in Baptism; but I have disfigured it since by my sins; You alone, my Redeemer, can restore it to its former beauty. Do this by Your Passion. O Jesus, I repent of having offended You. Never permit me to offend You again. Grant that I may love you always; and then do with me what You will.

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be…

Seventh Station: Jesus falls the second time

ADORATION
V. We Adore You Oh Christ and We Bless You
R. Because By Your Holy Cross You Have Redeemed the World

SCRIPTURE
From the Book of Lamentations 3:1-2, 9, 16
I am the man who has seen affliction under the rod of his wrath; he has driven and brought me into darkness without any light… He has blocked my ways with hewn stones he has made my paths crooked… He has made my teeth grind on gravel, and made me cower in ashes.

MEDITATION
Consider the second fall of Jesus under the Cross – a fall, which renews the pain of all the wounds of the head and members of our afflicted Lord.

PRAYER
My most gentle Jesus, how many times You have pardoned me, and how many times have I fallen again, and begun again to offend You! By the merits of this new fall, give me the necessary help to persevere in Your grace until death. Grant that in all temptations which assault me I may always commend myself to You. I love You, Jesus my love, with my whole heart; I repent of having offended You. Never permit me to offend You again. Grant that I may love You always; and then do with me what You will.

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be…

Eighth Station: Jesus meets the women of Jerusalem

ADORATION
V. We Adore You Oh Christ and We Bless You
R. Because By Your Holy Cross You Have Redeemed the World

SCRIPTURE
From the Gospel according to Luke 23:28-31
But Jesus turning to them said, “Daughters of Jerusalem do not weep for me, but weep for yourselves and for your children. For behold the days are coming when they will say, blessed are the barren, and the wombs that never bore and the breasts that never gave suck. Then they will begin to say to the mountains, ‘Fall on us’; and to the hills, ‘Cover us.’ For if they do this when the wood is green, what will happen when it is dry?”

MEDITATION
Consider how those women wept with compassion at seeing Jesus in such a pitiable state, streaming with blood, as He walked along. But Jesus said to them: Weep not for Me, but for your children.

PRAYER
My Jesus, laden with sorrows, I weep for the offenses I have committed against You, because of the pains they have deserved, and still more because of the displeasure they have caused You, Who have loved me so much. It is Your love, more than the fear of hell, which causes me to weep for my sins. My Jesus, I love You more than myself; I repent of having offended You. Never permit me to offend You again. Grant that I may love you always; and then do with me what You will.

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be…

Ninth Station: Jesus falls the third time

ADORATION
V. We Adore You Oh Christ and We Bless You
R. Because By Your Holy Cross You Have Redeemed the World

SCRIPTURE
From the Book of Lamentations 3:27-32
It is good for a man that he bear the yoke in his youth. Let him sit alone in silence when he has laid it on him; let him put his mouth in the dust, there may yet be hope; let him give his cheek to the smiter and be filled with insults. For the Lord will not cast off for ever, but, though he cause grief, he will have compassion according to the abundance of his steadfast love.

MEDITATION
Consider the third fall of Jesus Christ. His weakness was extreme, and the cruelty of His executioners excessive, who tried to hasten His steps when He had scarcely strength to move.

PRAYER
My outraged Jesus, by the merits of the weakness You suffered in going to Calvary, give me strength sufficient to conquer all human respect, and all my wicked passions, which have led me to despise Your friendship. I love You, Jesus my love, with my whole heart; I repent of having offended You. Never permit me to offend You again. Grant that I may love you always; and then do with me what You will.

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be…

Tenth Station: Jesus is stripped of his garments

ADORATION
V. We Adore You Oh Christ and We Bless You
R. Because By Your Holy Cross You Have Redeemed the World

SCRIPTURE
From the Gospel according to Mark 15:24
The soldiers divided his garments among them, casting lots for them, to decide what each should take.

MEDITATION
Consider the violence with which the executioners stripped Jesus. His inner garments adhered to His flesh, and they dragged them off so roughly that the skin came with them.

PRAYER
My innocent Jesus, by the merits of the torment You have felt, help me to strip myself of all affection to things of earth, in order that I may place all my love in You, who are so worthy of my love. I love You, O Jesus, with my whole heart; I repent of having offended You. Never permit me to offend You again. Grant that I may love you always; and then do with me what You will.

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be…

Eleventh Station: Jesus is nailed to the Cross

ADORATION
V. We Adore You Oh Christ and We Bless You
R. Because By Your Holy Cross You Have Redeemed the World

SCRIPTURE
From the Gospel according to Mark 15:25-27
And it was the third hour, when they crucified him. And the inscription of the charge against him read: “The King of the Jews.” And with him they crucified two robbers one on his right and one on his left.

MEDITATION
Consider how Jesus, after being thrown on the Cross, extended His hands, and offered to His Eternal Father the sacrifice of His death for our salvation. These barbarians fastened Him with nails, and them, raising the Cross, allowed Him to die with anguish.

PRAYER
My Jesus! loaded with contempt, nail my heart to Your feet, that it may ever remain there, to love You, and never leave You again. I love You more than myself; I repent of having offended You. Never permit me to offend You again. Grant that I may love you always; and then do with me what You will.

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be…

Twelfth Station: Jesus is raised upon the Cross and dies

ADORATION
V. We Adore You Oh Christ and We Bless You
R. Because By Your Holy Cross You Have Redeemed the World

SCRIPTURE
From the Gospel according to Mark 15:33-34, 37, 39
And when the sixth hour had come there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour. And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice: “Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?”, which means: “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” And Jesus uttered a loud cry and breathed his last.

When the centurion, who stood facing him, saw that he thus breathed his last, he said: “Truly this man was the Son of God”.

MEDITATION
Consider how your Jesus, after three house’ Agony on the Cross, consumed at length with anguish, abandons Himself to the weight of His body, bows His head, and dies.

PRAYER
O my dying Jesus, I kiss devoutly the Cross on which You died for love of me. I have merited by my sins to die a miserable death; but Your death is my hope. By the merits of Your death, give me grace to die, embracing Your feet, and burning with love for You. I yield my soul into Your hands. I love You with my whole heart; I repent of having offended You. Never permit me to offend You again. Grant that I may love you always; and then do with me what You will.

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be…

Thirteenth Station: Jesus is taken down from the Cross

ADORATION
V. We Adore You Oh Christ and We Bless You
R. Because By Your Holy Cross You Have Redeemed the World

SCRIPTURE
From the Gospel according to Mark 15:42-43, 46
And when evening had come, Joseph of Arimathea, a respected member of the council, who was also himself looking for the kingdom of God, bought a linen shroud, and took the body of Jesus down from the Cross.

MEDITATION
Consider how, after the death of our Lord, two of His disciples, Joseph and Nicodemus, took Him down from the Cross, and placed Him in the arms of His afflicted Mother, who received Him with unutterable tenderness, and pressed Him to her bosom.

PRAYER
O mother of sorrow, for the love of this Son, accept me for your servant, and pray to Him for me. And You, my Redeemer, since You have died for me, permit me to love You; for I wish only You, and nothing more. I love You, my Jesus, and I repent of ever having offended You. Never permit me to offend You again. Grant that I may love you always; and then do with me what You will.

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be…

Fourteenth Station: Jesus is laid in the tomb

ADORATION
V. We Adore You Oh Christ and We Bless You
R. Because By Your Holy Cross You Have Redeemed the World

SCRIPTURE
From the Gospel according to Mark 15:46-47
Joseph of Arimathea, wrapped the body of Jesus in the linen shroud and laid him in a tomb which had been hewn out of the rock. And he rolled a stone against the door of the tomb. Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of Joses saw where he was laid.

MEDITATION
Consider how the disciples carried the body of Jesus to bury it, accompanied by His holy Mother, who arranged It in the sepulcher with her own hands. They then closed the tomb, and all withdrew.

PRAYER
Oh, my buried Jesus, I kiss the stone that encloses You. But You rose again the third day. I beg You, by Your resurrection, make me rise glorious with You at the last day, to be always united with You in heaven, to praise You and love You forever. I love You, and I repent of ever having offended You. Never permit me to offend You again. Grant that I may love you always; and then do with me what You will.

Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be…

Closing Prayers

ACCLAMATION
OLord Jesus, our resurrection,
in the new tomb you destroy death and grant life.
R. Kyrie, eleison


Lord Jesus, our hope,
your body, crucified and risen,
is the new Tree of Life.
R. Kyrie, eleison

FINAL PRAYER
Behold, O kind and most sweet Jesus, I cast myself on my knees in Your sight, and with the most fervent desire of my soul, I pray and beg You to impress upon my heart lively sentiments of faith, hope, and charity, with true repentance for my sins, and a firm desire of amendment, while with deep affection and grief of soul I contemplate Your five most precious Wounds, having before my eyes that which David spoke in prophecy: “They pierced My hands and My feet; they have numbered all My bones.”

V. In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.
R. Amen.