Stations Of The Cross

 

Jesus our Saviour, we come before you asking your mercy for ourselves and for your whole Church, living and departed.  As we follow you on the way of the cross and consider your sufferings, give us some share in all its merits. This road we intend to follow was marked by your sweat and blood, it saw you despised and rejected by people.  Give us the spirit of true penitence, and help us to receive with joy all the crosses and humiliations which come to us during our pilgrimage through life, knowing that we are following you.

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The First Station:

Jesus is Condemned to Death

Jesus is brought to stand in front of Pontius Pilate, the judge. He is innocent but Pontius Pilate condemns him anyway and sentences Him to death.

It is really our bad thoughts, mean words, and angry actions that you are being punished for, Jesus. We are praying the Stations of the Cross to tell You that we are sorry for all our sins.

We adore you, Lord Christ, and we bless you.

    Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

Pilate said to them, "Then what should I do with Jesus who is called the Messiah?" All of them said, "Let him be crucified!" Then he asked, "Why, what evil has he done?" But they shouted all the more, "Let him be crucified!" So when Pilate saw that he could do nothing, but rather that a riot was beginning, he took some water and washed his hands before the crowd, saying, "I am innocent of this man's blood; see to it yourselves."  Then the people as a whole answered, "His blood be on us and on our children!"  So he released Barabbas for them; and after flogging Jesus, he handed him over to be crucified.  Mat 27:22-26

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The Second Station:

Jesus Takes His Cross

Jesus has been beaten by the soldiers. He has been laughed at and spat upon. Now he must pick up the heavy cross and carry it while the crowd yells. He is so tired and sad, but no one cares.

We care that you are tired, Jesus. We are sorry that you are sad. We would like to help You carry Your cross with our prayers.

We adore you, Lord Christ, and we bless you.

They took charge of Jesus and carrying the cross by himself, he went out to what is called The Place of the Skull, which in Hebrew is called Golgotha.  John 19:17

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The Third Station:

Jesus Falls The First Time

The cross is too heavy. It is so heavy that Jesus falls down under its weight. The blood from the crown of thorns is running into His eyes and His back aches from the scourging. People are still screaming and throwing things at Him. His heart must be as heavy as the cross He carries.

It is our sins that make your cross so heavy, Jesus. We are sorry. We love you and we try to be good for You with our prayers and with our lives.

We adore you, Lord Christ, and we bless you.

    Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

    Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

Therefore he had to become like his brothers and sisters in every respect, so that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in the service of God, to make a sacrifice of atonement for the sins of the people.  Because he himself was tested by what he suffered, he is able to help those who are being tested.  Heb 2:17-18

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The Fourth Station:

Jesus Meets His Blessed Mother

Suddenly, Jesus sees His Mother. She is standing at the side of the road surrounded by the crowd. Her eyes fill with tears when she sees Jesus. She wants to help Him but she cannot. Both their hearts ache at the other's pain.

Jesus, You and your Blessed Mother help us whenever we ask. Our hearts ache too with the pain of the Stations of the Cross. We promise to pray to you both often, for help in our lives.

We adore you, Lord Christ, and we bless you.

    Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

Is it nothing to you, all you who pass by? Look and see if there is any sorrow like my sorrow, which was brought upon me, which the LORD inflicted on the day of his fierce anger.  For these things I weep; my eyes flow with tears; for a comforter is far from me, one to revive my courage; my children are desolate, for the enemy has prevailed.  Lam 1:12,16

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The Fifth Station:

Simon of Cyrene helps Jesus Carry the Cross

The soldiers are in a hurry. They grab Simon of Cyrene out of the crowd to carry the cross and make Jesus go faster. Jesus was grateful to Simon for his help.

Simon did not know he was blessed when he was carrying Your cross--he only felt how heavy it was. Praying the Stations of the Cross will help us to remember that carrying our crosses helps You too.

 We adore you, Lord Christ, and we bless you.

    Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world

"Blessed are you when people hate you, and when they exclude you, revile you, and defame you on account of the Son of Man. Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, for surely your reward is great in heaven; for that is what their ancestors did to the prophets.  Luke 6:22-23

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The Sixth Station:

Veronica Wipes the Face of Jesus

Jesus' face is covered with sweat, blood and dust. It is itchy and uncomfortable. In pity, Veronica runs out to the road to wipe the dirt from Jesus' face. This small act of kindness is all she can do to help Him.

Jesus, we want to see and touch Your face, shining in glory in Heaven. We know that our small acts of kindness and our prayers help us grow closer to You and Your Father in Heaven.

. We adore you, Lord Christ, and we bless you.

    Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

Then the king will say to those at his right hand, 'Come, you that are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.'

 

Then the righteous will answer him, 'Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry and gave you food, or thirsty and gave you something to drink?  And the king will answer them, 'Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me.'  Mat 25:34-37, 40

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The Seventh Station:

Jesus Falls the Second Time

The road is so long and the cross is so heavy. Exhausted, Jesus falls down again. The soldiers yell at Him and whip Him to make him get up. Don't they know that they are hurting Him more? Jesus knows that He is suffering for the sins of the world. He gets up and keeps walking.

Jesus, sometimes we get tired, discouraged and impatient with the world. When we fail and fall into sin, it hurts You more. We are sorry and we ask You to help us be as patient and brave as You.

We adore you, Lord Christ, and we bless you.

    Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

Jesus answered them, "The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. Very truly, I tell you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains just a single grain; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.  John 12:23-24

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The Eighth Station:

Jesus Speaks to Women of Jerusalem

Next, Jesus meets some of the women he taught. They are crying. They are crying for Jesus, and for their own loss … what will they do without Jesus? Jesus tells them not to weep for Him, but for all the sinners of the world.

Jesus, you told the women of Jerusalem to weep for us. Even in your pain, You remembered us. Thank you. We will pray for sinners too.

We adore you, Lord Christ, and we bless you.

    Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

 

A great number of the people followed him, and among them were women who were beating their breasts and wailing for him. But Jesus turned to them and said, "Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for me, but weep for yourselves and for your children. For the days are surely coming when they will say, 'Blessed are the barren, and the wombs that never bore, and the breasts that never nursed.' 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?"  Luke 23:27-31

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The Ninth Station

Christ's Third Fall

Jesus reaches the last hill before Calvary. He looks up to see how far he has to go. When he sees the hill where He knows he is going to die, His strength leaves Him and He falls to the ground. There is still more pain, still more sorrow to endure. But Jesus loves us, so He keeps going.

Jesus, You kept going even though you were tired, scared and sad. You loved us then, and You love us now. We offer our prayers to tell you that we love you, and want to comfort you in Your great sacrifice.

. We adore you, Lord Christ, and we bless you.

    Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

Looking to Jesus the pioneer and perfecter of our faith, who for the sake of the joy that was set before him endured the cross, disregarding its shame, and has taken his seat at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such hostility against himself from sinners, so that you may not grow weary or lose heart.  Heb 12:2-3

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The Tenth Station:

Jesus is Stripped of His Garments

The crowd has followed Jesus and the soldiers to the top of Calvary hill. Now they laugh as the guards pull off his clothes - His robe has stuck to the blood on His back. The guards push and shove Jesus. They do not care Who He is, they only see that He is a object of scorn.

Jesus, even wounded, bleeding, roughly treated by the guards and mocked by the crowds, You were and are still our King. We ask you to remember us in Your Kingdom.

We adore you, Lord Christ, and we bless you.

    Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

 So they said to one another, "Let us not tear it, but cast lots for it to see who will get it." This was to fulfil what the scripture says, "They divided my clothes among themselves, and for my clothing they cast lots."  John 19:24

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The Eleventh Station:

Jesus is Nailed to the Cross

Is this the worst? The feet that carried the message of God's Love and the hands that healed are pierced with nails as Jesus is nailed to the cross. More wounds, more pain and more humiliation for Jesus.

Jesus, they tried to stop your hands and feet from doing Your Father's work by nailing you to a cross. You endured the pain of it for us, as you gave your whole life for us. We thank you and we love you.

We adore you, Lord Christ, and we bless you.

    Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

Out of his anguish he shall see light; he shall find satisfaction through his knowledge. The righteous one, my servant, shall make many righteous, and he shall bear their iniquities. Therefore I will allot him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he poured out himself to death, and was numbered with the transgressors; yet he bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.  Isa 53:11-12

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The Twelfth Station:

Jesus Dies upon the Cross

The sword that Simeon prophesied has pierced Mary's heart. The hopes of the Apostles are crushed. The veil of the Temple, symbol of the old covenant of God's Love, is torn in two as Jesus' death opens a New Covenant with God.

Jesus, you spoke lovingly to everyone gathered at the foot of Your cross. You knew the new life that Your death made possible. Speak lovingly to us when we come before You and make us worthy of that new life in You.

We adore you, Lord Christ, and we bless you.

    Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

After this, when Jesus knew that all was now finished, he said (in order to fulfil the scripture), "I am thirsty." A jar full of sour wine was standing there. So they put a sponge full of the wine on a branch of hyssop and held it to his mouth. When Jesus had received the wine, he said, "It is finished." Then he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.  John 19:28-30

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The Thirteenth Station:

Jesus is taken from the Cross

Now, all that is left is to take Jesus' body down from the cross. All the gentleness, reverence and love denied through this terrible day is possible now. Mary and the Apostles wonder, Is it too late? Is it over?

Jesus, with our prayers, we join in taking your body down from the cross. We touch You; take the nails out, wash your wounds, take off the crown of thorns, with love and sorrow. We grieve with Mary, and want to comfort her.

We adore you, Lord Christ, and we bless you.

    Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

Then the soldiers came and broke the legs of the first and of the other who had been crucified with him. But when they came to Jesus and saw that he was already dead, they did not break his legs. Instead, one of the soldiers pierced his side with a spear, and at once blood and water came out. After these things, Joseph of Arimathea, who was a disciple of Jesus, though a secret one because of his fear of the Jews, asked Pilate to let him take away the body of Jesus. Pilate gave him permission; so he came and removed his body.  John 19:32-34, 38

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The Fourteenth Station:

Jesus is Laid in the Sepulchre

Even in this time of sorrow, there is help. Joseph of Arimathea arranges for Jesus to be buried in a nearby tomb. His body is wrapped in cloth and sealed away. Everyone walks away, weeping. Finally, all is quiet, peaceful even.

Jesus, we sometimes think that You are gone, that it is all over, that we will never be happy or good again. Your death and resurrection shows us that You will never leave us. We should always try to follow you with our lives and our prayers

Do you not know that all of us who have been baptised into Christ Jesus were baptised into his death? Therefore we have been buried with him by baptism into death, so that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life.  Rom 6:3-4

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The Fifteenth Station:

Jesus is Risen!

You know that you were ransomed from the futile ways inherited from your ancestors, not with perishable things like silver or gold, but with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lamb without defect or blemish. He was destined before the foundation of the world, but was revealed at the end of the ages for your sake. Through him you have come to trust in God, who raised him from the dead and gave him glory, so that your faith and hope are set on God.  1 Pet 1:18-21

 

 

Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

Jesus remember us in your kingdom, and fill us with new life now and forever.

Dying you destroyed our death

Rising you restored our life

Lord Jesus, come in glory.

Amen


 

St Botolph’s Church, Northfleet


Page last updated: 2nd April 2021 9:36 AM
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