Stations of the Cross
Today, the 8th Grade led the school in the Stations of the Cross. The students wrote their own reflections, which are worth sharing. Have a blessed Holy Week.
The First Station: Jesus is condemned to Death
Jesus stood before Pontius Pilate, while being convicted of a crime that stated Jesus said He was the king of the Jews, and yet he had never uttered such words. Without protest, Jesus accepted the punishment without further challenges. For this crime the people of his community and the Roman Procurator condemned Him to the cross.
Jesus, we look for the strength you have, to not look down on those who may have misjudged us. The time you were accused of a crime by Pilate, and sentenced to be hung on the cross, you made it a point to forgive them and accept that what they had thought was false. Although it may have seemed not fair for him, he went on to forgive. It is the year of mercy, a year of forgiveness and repentance. We are reaching out to you as we journey on that path to forgiveness. Forgiveness to all, but in particular for all who have unfairly judged us. When you were condemned to the cross, caused by a false blame, you forgave them and held no grudges. As students and teachers, we all look to be truthful and forgiving towards each other. We pray for the self-control to forgive the ones who have misjudged us.
The Second Station: Jesus Carries His Cross
Jesus took up His cross and began His long journey to Calvary, where He was crucified. Despite the excruciating pain caused by the weight of the cross on His shoulders and the crown of thorns on His head, He continued on the agonizing journey for our salvation. Every step Jesus took tested his love for us, which proved indomitable. Jesus’ strength to take up his cross inspires us to shoulder our own crosses in life.
Dear Lord, sometimes we experience challenges that seem as if they cannot be overcome, but when You took up the cross, You showed us that every burden is bearable. When we experience difficulties with our school work or struggle to listen to the teachers throughout this last trimester, give us the strength to take on the challenges that we encounter. Help us to remain steadfast when we are faced with the crosses we must take up ourselves.
The Third Station: Jesus falls the first time
The weight of the cross crushes Jesus, causing him to fall. Even though he is divine, his humanity smites him as he lays upon the ground. He lays there in pain, but sees no pity in his persecutors eyes, as he is pulled up by the Roman guards who accompany him to his death. Though he struggles to go on, he finds an inner strength to help him continue.
Dear Jesus, in spite of God walking beside you, you could not bare the weight any longer of the wooden cross upon your back. Although death was not far away, your love for us gave you the strength and courage to continue this horrific journey. All of us fall down sometimes in life, whether it’s because of stress, fear, relationships, emotions or any of the other difficulties people are faced with. But, even though it is difficult to rise, we are able to bounce back through love and support. Jesus, give us the strength to continue while in tough times just as you did after falling under the cross. Amen.
The Fourth Station: Jesus meets his Blessed Mother:
Blessed, Mary, saw the pain on her son’s face as he trudgingly walked by carrying His cross. The child she raised, loved, nurtured is now tortured beyond agony. The child she played with and worked with and fed is now being forced to his death. Heartbroken and sorrowful she walked up to her son witnessing up close the pain and suffering he bared, all for us, all for our sins.
Jesus, thank you for the gift of your mother, blessed Mary, the model of perfect love. We thank you for a mother who can show as much love for us as you do. Please help us to be like Mary and show just as much love to you and to others as she does. Mary never left your side, even as you were dying, help us to stay with you even in times of our sorrow and hardship. With our love for you comes a fierce protectiveness for you. May we have this protectiveness for everlasting life. Amen
The Fifth Station: Simon Helps Jesus Carry the Cross
Jesus could not bear the cross any longer and just when Jesus thought he could not walk any farther, the guards saw Jesus struggling and were afraid that Jesus would not make it to the hill where he would be crucified. The guards ordered a man, Simon of Cyrene, to help Jesus carry the cross. Simon was curious as to why he was chosen to help Jesus bear this tremendous weight. Although Simon questioned the guards choice, he willing assisted Jesus.
Heavenly Father, Simon did not turn away from Jesus when he needed help in bearing his cross. Sometimes we resist our own call to carry our cross, running away from our responsibilities. Help us learn to return our call to the cross and find a Simon in our own struggles. Open our eyes so we may become like Simon so we may help others to bear their own cross, even if it interferes with our own desires.
The Sixth Station: Veronica Wipes Jesus’ Face
As Jesus continues his journey he is tired, beaten, bloody, and sweaty. The crowd mocks him as he continues on to his crucifixion and his death. Courageously Veronica steps out of the crowd and wipes Jesus’ face with a clean, soft cloth. Despite all those who might treat her as an outcast for helping Jesus, she wipes his face lovingly and caringly in an attempt to comfort her loving Lord.
Lord Jesus please help us to be compassionate towards those who may need our love or friendship. Help us to have the courage to welcome those who may not have many friends or who may sit alone at the lunch table. Help us care for anybody who is outcasted in the same way as Veronica who lovingly wiped your face in an attempt to comfort you when you were outcasted and oppressed. Lord please help us to love, console, and comfort those who are rejected in our community.
The Seventh Station: Jesus Falls a Second Time
Even with the support of his faithful disciples, Jesus is tired and weak. The cross gets harder to carry with every step he takes. The pain takes over his whole body and he cannot stay standing. Jesus falls to the ground a second time. He lay on the dirt, suffering from the constant pain rushing through his arms and back. Even though it seems impossible, he gathers the little strength he has left and stands. Jesus continues on his journey, thinking about you.
Jesus, you always had the strength to continue. You had the strength to carry your cross to your death. Even after you fell for a second time you continued.
When we feel we do not have the strength to continue in daily life we think about you Jesus, and how you sacrificed yourself for your people. Sometimes we find ourselves in a similar position to yours, where we want to give up but must keep trying. Even if I fail multiple tests in a row I will keep going because I think of you Jesus. If you could find strength to continue to your death we can find strength to continue in daily life. You, Jesus always encourage us to keep going, to achieve our goals and never quit. You tell us to do this by your example, you kept going even to your death, and had the strength to continue.
The Eighth Station: Jesus Meets the Weeping Women
As Jesus continued along, struggling with the heavy burden of his cross, some people laughed and made fun of him. Many jeered and mocked him as well. However, one group of women, moved by compassion for Jesus, felt his pain and wept for him. The women’s genuine love and sorrow for Jesus gave him the courage to keep bearing his cross.
Lord, these women showed compassion to you in your darkest hour. We are not always so compassionate to our peers when they are in need. Sometimes we only think of ourselves rather than the people around us. Lord, give us the ability to step into the shoes of others. Give us the courage and empathy to comfort and stand up for our classmates and friends when they are suffering. Just as you were falsely accused of something you did not do, our classmates may have been falsely accused of cheating or lying. Help us to stand up for them and show them compassion just like the women showed you.
The Ninth Station: JESUS FALLS A THIRD TIME
Jesus has been walking for what must seem like an eternity. He has been beaten, whipped, cursed at, and mercilessly attacked. Weak from pain, thirst and exhaustion he falls for a third time, collapsing onto his knees. Yet again, the merciless soldiers ruthlessly urge him up as the crowd laughs. Jesus can see Golgotha ahead and forges onward to his final destination.
Jesus, as you have faced the same challenge three times now, please help us when we encounter the same problem again and again. Help us defeat these challenges as you did, when we don’t think we can go on. Give us your strength to continue on as we face our third and last trimester at Christ the King, just as you faced your third and last fall on the way to the cross.
The Tenth Station: Jesus is Stripped of his Garments
(Charlotte)Reflection: After bearing his cross, Jesus has finally reached the top of the hill at Golgotha, and he is stripped of his clothes and pride. Already he has gone through an exhausting journey, he is beaten, left with harsh wounds on his body, and without clothes. He is left there, embarrassed and ashamed. As his clothes are torn off, wounds that have started to heal over have been torn open once more. So, as we look back at the hardship you endured to save us, we shall always remember station ten when you were stripped of your clothes.
Jesus, as we walk through life we are faced with many challenges. When we are embarrassed, people laugh and stare. Help us when we are put into situations of embarrassment to try to remember the difficulties you went through at that time. When those challenges face us and our insecurities are pointed out, remind us that we can to turn to you. You felt alone in a time of humiliation, like we may feel alone sometimes, we ask you for the strength and stamina you had during that grueling moment in time.
The Eleventh Station: JESUS IS NAILED TO THE CROSS
Above Jesus’ head, the charge against him was nailed. Mockingly, it read: Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews. Shortly after, two thieves were crucified; one to the right of Jesus and the other on the left. Around them, the onlookers jeered and ridiculed Jesus. “He saved others, he cannot save himself? If you are the Son of God, come down from the Cross.” Of the Seven Last Words of Christ, Jesus spoke, “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.” Even as he hung on the cross in unimaginable pain, he thought only of those who persecuted him.
Jesus died for us and he did so of his own free will. He followed God’s call and for his sacrifice, he saved us from our own sin. A sacrifice does not need to be laying down our lives for others, like Jesus did. Instead, a good sacrifice might be allowing a sibling to have the last bread roll at dinner or giving up some of your free time and spending it by helping to clean your house. As we walk through life, help us to remember Jesus’ sacrifice and give us the courage to make our own sacrifices.
The Twelfth Station: Jesus dies on the cross
Jesus undergoes three long hours of agony on the cross before he dies. Only Mary, His mother, John, and other women remained by his side when Jesus was crucified and took his last breath. The savior, the miracle worker, the Lamb of God was now dead, because of us and our salvation. Jesus sacrificed his life for us and saves by taking away our sins when he uttered “Father, into your hands I commend my spirit.”
Lord Jesus, you died on the cross for us, purely because of our sins and evil ways. You accepted your fate without any opposition. Please teach us the ways of selflessness and sacrifice, so we, too, can follow your example. You suffered for the good of your people, and we praise and glorify you for that. You have taught us to give ourselves up for others, even if it gives us great discomfort and pain. You sacrificed your own life for our wrongdoings. Dear savior, thank you for freeing us from sins.
The 13th Station: Jesus is Taken Down
Jesus, while you were being crucified, you went through a great amount of pain, and everyone was there for you. Now that two men have taken you down from the cross, many people have lacked the strength and courage to support you. Some of the people in your life whom you thought were loyal, left you at your weakest moment in life. After you were taken down from the cross, your Mother cradled you like a newborn infant. Your Mother, Mary showed a great amount of hope and strength; now we ask you to help us find hope when all is lost.Allow us to help others when they lack the strength to overcome obstacles in their life.
Jesus, help us keep faith and attentiveness in all the challenges we may face in life. When we find ourselves faced with a difficult task, help us to remember with your help we can override the problem. Whether it be in an academic situation or with relationships we have with one another. We look up to you to supply us with hope and strength to move forward. Students and teachers alike ask you that as the school year comes to a close, guide us in trying our hardest to finish the last term with the same enthusiasm as we had in the first term. We know this may be a difficult task, but with your help and the help of our loved ones, we will be able to go through many of our problems with strength, courage, and attentiveness.
The Fourteenth Station: JESUS IS LAID IN THE TOMB
Forgetting the promise that was made by Jesus of his return, Jesus’s friends and family sorrowfully lay him in the tomb. They feel a sense of uselessness and even regret – could they have done something, anything to prevent this? As he lay there in his tomb carved by stone, with a large boulder that blocks the entrance, it seems to be a symbol or sign that Jesus is forever unreachable, gone and out of their lives.
Dear Lord, when I do badly on a spelling test, when my best friend spills a secret that I said not to talk about, help me to remember that you are always there for me. Help me not to shut you out of my life, even on my worst day when it feels like no one cares about me or what I have to say. Let me to remember that although you died, you rose, when you felt gone, you came back. Even in the loneliest of times, we are never alone because of you.