Good Friday. . .
Le vendredi Saint
The betrayal, the mockery of a trial, the crowd yelling "crucify
him!", the ensuing torture, the carrying of the cross, the nailing
to the cross, the last 7 words of Jesus, the death of God,
the veil of the Temple ripped apart, the earthquake, the darkness, the
burial, the tomb, the silence.
The Sorrowful Mysteries (with Scripture
quotes and my own meditations).
The Agony in the Garden.
He prayed, saying: "Father, if you will, take this cup away from me; still,
not my will but yours be done." And to strengthen him, an angel from heaven
appeared to him. He was in such agony and he prayed so fervently that his sweat
became like drops of blood falling on the ground. Luke 22:42.
Meditation: Suffering and Acceptance. In our own dark hours of temptation
and weakness, when we feel abandoned and hopeless, when suffering brings confusion,
may we gain strength by turning to prayers, our own prayers and asking others
to pray for us too. When giving up our own plans and submitting to God's plan
takes every ounce of patience and humility in us, may we find courage in how
you endured your own suffering, O Lord.
Then Pilate took Jesus and had him scourged. John 19:1.
Meditation: The Horror of Physical Suffering. Remembering the injustice
done to you, may we learn to refrain from lashing out and hitting. May we transform
our own violence and anger, impatience and short temper into true compassion
The Crown of Thorns.
They clothed him in purple and weaving a crown of thorns placed it on him. They
begun to salute him with "Hail, King of the Jews!" and kept striking his head
with a reed and spitting upon him. Mark 15:17
Meditation: Courage and Dignity. Mocking and ridiculing is a common reaction
to what we don't understand. May we offer silence instead. May we accept with
humility the trials and misunderstandings we encounter. May your courage under
brutality and mockery, O Lord, inspires us to uphold the dignity of all who
The Carrying of the Cross.
So they took Jesus and carrying the cross himself, he went out to what is called
the Place of the Skull, in Hebrew, Golgotha. John 19:17.
Meditation: Endurance. To have the courage to get up after falling, to try
again after each failing. May we accept the help of others. May we always attempt
to relieve the suffering of others around us, in small daily gestures of help
and support and comfort. May we find the will to bear our own suffering without
complaining and to endure our own trials as much as we can.
The crucifixion. "When they came to the place called The
Skull, they crucified him and the criminals there too, one on his right, the
other on his left. Then Jesus said: "Father, forgive them, they know not what
they do". Luke 23:33
Meditation: Salvation and Redemption. The Son offered his suffering and
death for us, for the redemption of our sins and, in the process, he opened
up a way for us. For us, Christians, (which means: "little Christ"), we choose
every year to relive his Passion to deepen our love and to renew our commitment.
And in our own way, in our feeble and fumbling efforts, we can imitate him.
Let us offer our love and devotion in return for his sacrifice. Daily, we can
seek opportunity to offer the "death" of our egos as a personal sacrifice. May
we always remember that when we forgive, we participate in the plan of Redemption,
when we love our neighbor, we are loving him who loved us first.