Development of the Stations of the Cross

A prayer form that is most often associated with the season of Lent, the Way of the Cross (as it is formally called) is a prayer for all seasons. The idea of this prayer came from the ancient practice of pilgrimage. Some who had particular spiritual burdens to discharge, penances to do, or needs to intercede for would make the long journey to the Holy Land on foot in search of the special graces attached to the land where Christ had walked.

Obviously, this took considerable time and resources to accomplish, and not everyone could make the journey even once in a lifetime. But the spiritual benefits of a pilgrimage were enormous, not the least of which was the community that often spontaneously formed along the way for protection, mutual encouragement, and fellowship. The final leg of the journey was to follow the Via Dolorosa, or Way of Sadness—the route that Jesus presumably took through Jerusalem to Calvary with his cross.


The stations of the cross became standardized over time, encompassing at last the fourteen stops we have today (fifteen if the Resurrection is included).

Originally, the franchise of the stations belonged to the Franciscan order, who were the guardians of the Holy Land. At Franciscan parishes and retreat centers, anyone unable to make an actual pilgrimage to the Holy Land was invited to symbolically journey through those fateful stops and make the same reparations and intercessions that other pilgrims made. Today almost every Catholic parish has a specially installed group of stations, and many retreat centers will have outdoor stations as well.

By walking the stations one can literally “move” toward spiritual wholeness. We can understand our spiritual lives as a journey toward greater integrity through accompanying the passion of Jesus by this wholly engaging prayer.

We can use one of the many books of meditations on the stations that have been written by spiritual masters to accompany us along the way, or we can simply offer our own prayers as we go.


da: http://www.loyolapress.com/our-catholic-faith/liturgical-year/lent/stations-of-the-cross/development-of-the-stations-of-the-cross


the Way of the Cross (Pdf)


Lord Jesus Christ,
your passion and death is the sacrifice
that unites earth and heaven
and reconciles all people to you.
May we who have faithfully reflected on these mysteries
follow in your steps and so come
to share your glory in heaven
where you live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit one God,
for ever and ever.







Way of the Cross "the face of Christ, the face of man"

Msgr. Giancarlo Maria Bregantini

He who saw this has testified so that you also may believe. His testimony is true, and he knows that he tells the ...to be continued


Development of the Stations of the Cross

A prayer form that is most often associated with the season of Lent, the Way of the Cross (as it is formally called) is a ...to be continued



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The pupils of class 4

The pupils of class 4 of «istituto Margherita», after reflecting on the prayer of Bartolomea, wrote their own prayer: it ...to be continued


We ask Mary the gift of being WITNESSES OF MERCY

«We need constantly to contemplate the mystery of mercy...», but «At times we are called to gaze even more ...to be continued



As the Beatification of Pope Paul VI is getting near, let us ask him to accompany us with his words and exhortations, in order to revive our devotion to Mary, the Queen of Holy Rosary, and to intensify our prayer for the Church and for all mankind.


MARIALIS CULTUS, Apostolic Exhortation, February 2, 1974
CHRISTI MATRI; Encyclical on prayers during October, September 15, 1966
; Encyclical On PrayersDuring May, April 29, 1965



"All generations will call me blessed": "The Church's devotion to the Blessed Virgin is intrinsic to Christian worship ...to be continued


LITTLE MEDITATION a unique school of prayer

Jhon Paul II

Kneeling here, before the grotto of Massabielle, I feel deeply that I have reached the goal of my pilgrimage. This ...to be continued


LITTLE MEDITAION Mary's steadfast faith throughout her life

John Paul II

The first beatitude cited in the Gospel is that of faith, and it refers to Mary: “Blessed is she who believed” (Lk 1:45). These ...to be continued


LITTLE HISTORY OF THE ROSARY Apostolic letter Rosarium Virginis Mariae

of the Supreme Pontiff John Paul II
The Rosary of the Virgin Mary, which gradually took form in the second millennium under the guidance of the Spirit of God ...to be continued





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