Start Date: 23 February 2018
End Date: 23 February 2018
Place: 365 Burrows Ave.
The Stations of the Cross – A Devotion for Lent
You may have seen the announcement in the Parish Bulletin that St. Mary’s will be offering the Stations of the Cross on Fridays, February 23, March 2 and March 9 at 6 PM. Some of you may be saying “Stations of the what? What in the world is the Stations of the Cross?” Good questions!
The Stations of the Cross are a traditional devotional practice during Lent. Back in the early centuries of the church, Christians made pilgrimages to Jerusalem in the days leading up to Easter. One of the things they did as they prepared to celebrate Easter is they walked and prayed along the traditional path that Jesus traveled from his trial to his death on the cross and then to his tomb. Over time, different “stations” were identified where Jesus said or did something important along the way. Some of these stations are found in the Scriptures–here Jesus was condemned to death, there Simon of Cyrene began to help Jesus carry his cross, there Jesus was nailed to his cross, etc. Other stations seem to have grown out of local traditions about other things Jesus did as he carried his cross. Eventually, over the centuries, the stations were set to be these:
1. Jesus is condemned to death
2. Jesus takes up his cross
3. Jesus falls the first time
4. Jesus meets His Mother
5. The cross is laid on Simon of Cyrene
6. Veronica wipes the face of Jesus
7. Jesus falls the second time
8. Jesus meets the women of Jerusalem
9. Jesus falls the third time
10. Jesus is stripped of His garments
11. Jesus is nailed to the cross
12. Jesus dies on the cross
13. Jesus’ body is placed in the arms of his mother
14. Jesus is laid in the tomb
As you can see, Stations 1, 2, 5, 8, 10, 11, 12, and 14 come directly from Scripture. The remaining stations are based on those local Jerusalem traditions that I mentioned above.