Monday, February 15, 2016

The Way of the Crucified Jesus and His Followers

Pieta by Michelangelo. Photo by Juan M. Romero via Wikimedia Commons.
During Lent, we practice more often the popular devotions of the Sorrowful Mysteries of the Rosary and of the Way of the Cross. We want to follow Jesus in His sorrows and in His way of His cross to His resurrection. This latter devotion involves some traditional fourteen stops that deepen our dying to our sinful self and rising to our graced self.

(1) We start with Jesus being judged religiously by the Jewish high priest and secularly by the Roman governor and condemned to be crucified. (2) Then He shoulders the cross for the walk to the hill of crucifixion. (3) He falls the first time, bruised by people like us who are not loyal in our faith and obedience. (4) He is met and encouraged by His mother and friend Mary, and through her in the communion of saints by His father and friend Joseph. (5) He is helped by the man Simon, who also shoulders His cross. (6) He is helped by the woman Veronica, who dries His face. (7) He falls the second time, bruised by people like us, who are not modest in our hope and poverty.

(8) Jesus encounters some weeping women of Jerusalem and urges them to their and their families' conversion. (9) He falls the third time, bruised by people like us, who are not truly affectionate in our love and chastity. (10) He is stripped of His clothing by people like us, who are not childlike in our humility and cheerfulness. (11) He is nailed to the cross by people like us, who are not honest in our justice and perseverance.

(12) Jesus burns out on the cross, dying for us His enemies and friends. He prays for our forgiveness, He promises us His everlasting home, He entrusts us together and singly to His mother and her to us. He experiences our abandonment from His Father because of our sins and yet trusts Him completely and loves Him wholeheartedly and us mercifully. He thirsts for us, His brothers and sisters, to be His family of friends. He completes His life and mission by His Holy Breath for His Father and for us. He hands over His Holy Breath to us, His brothers and sisters, to make us His family of friends.

(13) Jesus' dead body is held truly affectionately by Mary. (14) His dead body is buried in the tomb of Joseph of Arimathea, a disciple belonging to the Jewish ruling council, only to rise on the third day to breathe and blow and kindle us with His Holy Breath, His Wind and Fire, from His Father. So He makes us together and singly, each original for and with all and each, people and angels with our earth and universe during our time and eternity His family of friends of Joseph and Mary in His Church for His world, to the image and likeness of Him Child and His Father and His Holy Breath.

We pray for the concerns of the successor of Peter about the Church and the world. We hope with the help of the prayer of the Church to Jesus (indulgence) to overthrow the impact, psychological and social, of our past sins. We sorrow for our sins because we fear to be separated from our friend Jesus, because we hope to be joined closely to Him our Friend, and mostly because we fail to love Him our faithful Friend and Companion and Savior, our Brother and Lord, our Comrade and Champion and Revolutionary, freeing and uniting us to be His family of friends.

The last supper, the passion, and the resurrection of Jesus is our passover, our liberation. The coming of His Holy Breath from His Father is our covenant, our communion. The last supper is now the passover and covenant meal offering of Jesus and of us His friends, especially Mary and Joseph.

Father Don

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