Jesus Falls the Third Time

Ninth Station

We adore Thee, O Christ, and we praise Thee.
Because by Thy Holy Cross Thou hast redeemed the World.

It’s difficult to be old in an uncaring World where many feel that the elderly have nothing to offer.  This Station gives hope to the elderly, to the depressed and to those who have given up on life.  Jesus is near the end of the road and is completely drained of strength.  This time it is more difficult to rise.
“My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” 

But he gets up and staggers on.

Lord of all hopefulness,
bring to the sick your comfort and healing.
Be to the elderly and bedridden their stay and companion.
Teach patient tolerance to all who are no longer young.
Give to the dying the grace of perseverance
which you won for them in your third fall,
the assurance that when the final moments of life ebb away
you will come and take them to yourself.

Let us proclaim the Mystery of Faith.

Dying you destroyed our death.
Rising you restored our life.
Lord Jesus, come in glory.

I love Thee Jesus, my love above all things;
I repent with my whole heart for having offended Thee.
Never permit me to separate myself from Thee again.
Grant that I may love Thee always and then do with me what Thou wilt.

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Jesus Speaks to the Women and Children

Eighth Station

Jesus speaks to the women and children

We adore Thee, O Christ, and we praise Thee.
Because by Thy Holy Cross Thou hast redeemed the World.

Along the Way of the Cross, there were women who wept in pity.
Jesus accepted their compassion, but mysteriously warned:
“Weep first for yourselves and your children.”
Jesus foresaw the sad things to come.  People would choose to remain in sin and reject the healing power of God’s forgiveness.

God of mercy and compassion,teach us that even if our hearts condemn us you do not come to reject us, but to reveal yourself as the God of immense tenderness.
In your providence, all things co-operate for good.
Lord of infinite mercy our future lies in your hands.
All we really need is a contrite, humble heart coming back to you.
Stretch out your hand in blessing, pardon and peace.

Let us proclaim the Mystery of Faith.

Dying you destroyed our death.
Rising you restored our life.
Lord Jesus, come in glory.

I love Thee Jesus, my love above all things;
I repent with my whole heart for having offended Thee.
Never permit me to separate myself from Thee again.
Grant that I may love Thee always
and then do with me what Thou wilt.

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Jesus Falls the Second Time

Seventh Station

Jesus falls the second time

We adore Thee, O Christ, and we praise Thee.
Because by Thy Holy Cross Thou hast redeemed the World.

 

 

 

The second fall of Jesus might well be compared to the trials and stresses of middle-age.  Jesus is not as strong now as when he first began to climb the Hill of Calvary.  He stumbles and falls.  But in rising again and struggling on, he challenges us to begin anew each time we fall.

Lord, when we are drained and discouraged from continual frustration & setbacks, give us the strength to accept ourselves with humble patience.
A person is not a failure because they fall.
When life seems to crumble and we imagine that we are uselessand unimportant, help us to our feet again.
Listen to the cry of our brokenness and confusion; help us to rise again with dignity and to begin again.
May we never despair of your love and forgiveness,
let us pass this supreme hope on to others.

Let us proclaim the Mystery of Faith.

Dying you destroyed our death.
Rising you restored our life.
Lord Jesus, come in glory.

I love Thee Jesus, my love above all things;
I repent with my whole heart for having offended Thee.
Never permit me to separate myself from Thee again.
Grant that I may love Thee always
and then do with me what Thou wilt.

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Veronica Wipes the Face of Jesus

Sixth Station

Veronica wipes the face of Jesus

We adore Thee, O Christ, and we praise Thee.
Because by Thy Holy Cross Thou hast redeemed the World.

A woman steps out from the crowd.  Gently but courageously, Veronica wipes the face of Jesus.  She braves threats, verbal abuse and even violence.                  In gratitude, Jesus signs her cloth with the imprint of his face.

 

 

 

Lord, fear often makes us run away from demanding situations.
Give us the strength not to be swayed by the company we are in, by the fashions of the times, by the desire to foolishly, follow the crowd.
Help us to speak out when Christian values are at stake.
Give us the courage to follow our own consciences no matter what others may think or say.  Keep us faithful to your teaching.  Grant us the grace to accept the difficulties of sometimes having to stand alone in defending our faith, justice and truth.

Let us proclaim the Mystery of Faith.
Dying you destroyed our death.
Rising you restored our life.
Lord Jesus, come in glory.

I love Thee Jesus, my love above all things.
I repent with my whole heart for having offended Thee.
Never permit me to separate myself from Thee again.
Grant that I may love Thee always and then do with me what Thou wilt.

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Fifth Station

Simon helps Jesus carry his Cross

We adore Thee, O Christ, and we praise Thee.

Because by Thy Holy Cross Thou hast redeemed the World.

 

The Cross is becoming too heavy for Jesus. 
A passer-by is forced to help lighten the burden.  Jesus accepts gratefully.  Jesus needed Simon.  That small gesture of charity would never be forgotten.

Lord, sometimes we find it burdensome to involve ourselves with people.
Teach us that the essence of Christianity is love; that every person is our neighbour.
Help us to recognise you especially in the poor, the sick and the elderly.
May we do the menial tasks that no one else will take on.
Make us humble enough to accept help from others.
Thank you, Lord, for the good neighbours and friends
who bring us sunshine, laughter and love.

Let us proclaim the Mystery of Faith.
Dying you destroyed our death.
Rising you restored our life.

Lord Jesus, come in glory.

I love Thee Jesus, my love above all things;
I repent with my whole heart for having offended Thee.
Never permit me to separate myself from Thee again.
Grant that I may love Thee always and then do with me what Thou wilt.

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Jesus meets his Mother

Fourth Station

Jesus meets his Mother

We adore Thee, O Christ, and we praise Thee.

Because by Thy Holy Cross Thou hast redeemed the World.

 

 

 

A Mother meets a son.  Mary encounters Jesus.  It is a soul-piercing experience. Mary is there at the right time, in the right place.  Mary offers encouragement and sympathy, aware that her Son is fulfilling his Father’s will.

Mary, you were human, a woman who knew the pain and difficulties of life.
Your Son gave you to us to be our Mother.
Gentle Mary, mothers are often torn between anguish and hope,
baffled at seeing their children suffer,
tempted to think that they have failed their families
and that God has abandoned them.  Give to women a calm vision of life. 
Teach them their true role in modern society.
May they be Christ-bearers, evangelisers in the home, in the community,
in the workplace, maintaining and restoring life and love.
Mary, our Mother, protect the gift of innocence in today’s youth.
Mirror of Justice, Queen of Peace, be with us now.  Hail Mary ….

Let us proclaim the Mystery of Faith.
Dying you destroyed our death.
Rising you restored our life.
Lord Jesus, come in glory.

 

I love Thee Jesus, my love above all things;
I repent with my whole heart for having offended Thee.
Never permit me to separate myself from Thee again.
Grant that I may love Thee always and then do with me what Thou wilt.

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Jesus Falls the First Time

Third Station

Jesus falls the first time

We adore Thee, O Christ, and we praise Thee.
Because by Thy Holy Cross Thou hast redeemed the World.

Jesus is now on his way to the Hill of Calvary.  The road is long, the paved street is rough and the heat of the noonday Sun is overpowering.  He arrives at the foot of the hill.  He has left the level ground and starts to climb. 

It now becomes more difficult. 

He grows weary beneath the heavy weight; he stumbles and falls.

Lord, your first fall is like the fall of the young person on the threshold of adolescence. There are many new challenges and temptations today. Give courage and strength to the youth.  Help them to avoid wrong-doing. Protect them from drunkenness and drugs. Teach them to handle their problems with gentleness, without panic or self-pity. Help us, whom lead them, to build an environment of love and trust where they will make the right decisions for their future. When their youthful idealism is shattered by sin and human weakness, give them the grace to rise from their fall and to try again.

Let us proclaim the Mystery of Faith.

Dying you destroyed our death.
Rising you restored our life.
Lord Jesus, come in glory.

 

I love Thee Jesus, my love above all things;
I repent with my whole heart for having offended Thee.
Never permit me to separate myself from Thee again.
Grant that I may love Thee always
and then do with me what Thou wilt.

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Jesus accepts his Cross

Second Station
Jesus accepts his Cross

We adore Thee, O Christ, and we praise Thee.
Because by Thy Holy Cross Thou hast redeemed the World.

“If any man has a mind to come after me, let him take up his Cross daily and follow me.” Jesus goes forward with great courage to do his Father’s will: “Thy will be done not mine.”  He accepts the Cross to teach us how precious we are in the eyes of God.  His grace can transform every Cross we meet into a victory of love.

Lord,your Gospel does not promise that we will be spared from pain.Help us to understand that no matter how we try to escape the Crossit remains a human reality, but your life gives meaning to it.You saw that it was necessary to pass through pain and death and bowed your head to the Father’s will.
Keep us from bitterness and despair.
Teach us to come prayerfully, in poverty of spirit, with open hands.
Give us the grace of acceptance and resignation.
Help us to accept reality, to live with ourselves and our crosses.

(At the end of each Station)
Let us proclaim the Mystery of Faith.
Dying you destroyed our death.
Rising you restored our life.
Lord Jesus, come in glory.

I love Thee Jesus, my love above all things;
I repent with my whole heart for having offended thee
Never permit me to separate myself from Thee again.
Grant that I may love Thee always and then do with me what Thou wilt.

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First Station
Jesus is
 condemned to death

We adore Thee, O Christ, and we praise Thee.
Because by Thy Holy Cross Thou hast redeemed the World.

 

This is a scene found today in many of countries torn apart by war and bloodshed.  In the city of Jerusalem there are riots, marches, protests.  Terrorists pave the streets.  Shouts of “Crucify him, crucify him,” ring loud and clear.  Suddenly there is a hushed silence.  Jesus appears at the door of Pilate’s Courtroom – a man alone and condemned.  Pressure groups have won the day.  Jesus must die, a human life must be destroyed.

Lord, grant us the grace not to condemn life but to accept and respect it.
Human life is sacred from womb to tomb; no motive can ever make its destruction right.
Enlighten those who exploit the dignity of human life to see the futility of violence and murder.
May the gift of your Holy Spirit lead us to recognise across all frontiers, the faces of our brothers and sisters, children of God, our Father in heaven.

 (At the end of each Station)

Let us proclaim the Mystery of Faith.
Dying you destroyed our death.
Rising you restored our life.
Lord Jesus, come in glory.

I love Thee Jesus, my love above all things
I repent with my whole heart for having offended Thee.
Never permit me to separate myself from Thee again.
Grant that I may love Thee always and then do with me what Thou wilt

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How We Can Truly Be Perfect

On our own we cannot be perfect, just as your heavenly Father is perfect—but we must be to correspond to the task our nature lays upon us. We cannot do this, but we can follow him, cling to him, become his. If we belong to him as his limbs or members, then through our participation we become what he is: his goodness becomes ours. What the father says in the parable of the prodigal son is realised in us: All I have is yours (Lk 15:31). The demand of the sermon on the mount that is all too stiff for us is brought together and transformed into communion with Jesus, into being a disciple of Jesus: in clinging fast to our relationship to him, in friendship with him and in confidence in him….

To the extent that we belong to Jesus his qualities are realised in us too—the beatitudes, the perfection of the Father…. The new man is not Utopian: he exists and to the extent that we are united with him hope is

present and in no way merely future. Eternal life and the real fellowship and community, liberation, are not utopia, the mere expectation of what does not exist. Eternal life is the real life, even today and at present in communion with Jesus. Pope Benedict XVI

His Holiness Benedict XVI was Pope from 2005 to 2013.

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Psalm 53

If you do have to suffer for being good, you will count it a blessing. (IP 3:14)

Not all opposition to faithful Christian belief and life comes from the violent. Many voices, loud and subtle, argue against the vision of the Gospel. Resisting the familiar, popular values and viewpoints that would undermine our discipleship can cause as much pain as enduring the more dramatic forms of persecution.

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God, save me by your name;

God save me by your name;

by your power, uphold my cause.

O God, hear my prayer;

listen to the words of my mouth.

For proud men have Risen against me,

ruthless men seek my life.

They have no regard for God.

But I have God for my help.

The Lord upholds my life.

Let the evil recoil upon my foes:  you who are faithful, destroy them.

I will sacrifice to you with a willing heart and praise your name for it is good:

for you have rescued me from all my distress and my eyes have seen the downfall of my foes. Glory be to the Father….

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Suggested Prayer of the Faithful

Lent 2020

May you find inspiration in the following texts

Let us turn to the Father and ask him for the healing and strength we need this Lent:

That this season of Lent will be a time of greater prayer and fervent devotion for us and for all the Church.

That these days of Lent will be marked by earnest efforts at peacemaking throughout the world.

That we will be generous in our almsgiving this Lent, and attentive to the poor.

That God will repair all the broken relationships in our lives and make us merciful, gentle, and forgiving.

That this Lent we will be faithful to fasting, prayer, and almsgiving, and to all the ways that the Lord sanctifies us.

That God will rescue all those who live at a distance from him because of self-absorption or sin.

Loving Father, bless our Lent so that we will live as your holy children.

We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

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The Grace to Take Up Our Cross

Pain, sickness, trouble, seem to strike senselessly and often warp the lives they touch. Why this one or that one should be singled out for suffering is more than anyone can know here and now…. What we do know is that God is our Father and that he permits only those things to happen to us that are for our good. They are indeed for our own good if we use them rightly.

“Offer it up!” is a stock phrase that will bring a smile of recognition to anyone who has ever gone to a Catholic school. It was a little phrase that in childhood could transform everything from a lost prize or a skinned knee to a dose of bitter medicine or the teasing of a trying companion. With older years and the sophistication of our age it is easy to forget that life’s biggest, sorest, bitterest crosses can be “offered up” in union with our suffering Lord just as successfully as the smaller trials of childhood. Furthermore, they can be endured cheerfully, not just as a medical measure to help our cure but as coin for heaven. Every pain is expendable, and it is a pity to waste even the tiniest bit. Naturally this does not mean that a person with appendidtis is expected to fold his hands’and die piously without ever calling the doctor. The Lord who gave us remedies expects us to”use them. But there will always be pain which no doctor can alleviate, and there will always be suffering which no remedy can cure. What is to be done with that? It is a free gift to us, like the cross thrust on Simon of Cyrene’s shoulders. To grumble while we bear it will not make it any lighter nor relieve us of it…. To bear the cross of suffering with regard for him who allows us to carry it is to use wisely and well a sure means to heaven. Sister Mary Jean Dorcy, O.P.

Sister Mary Jean (1988) was a Dominican sister, and a prolific author and illustrator, especially of children’s literature’.

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