Stations 4 and 5

Stations of the Cross: The Fourth Station: Jesus Meets His Mother

    As we reflect upon the fourth station of the cross we can hear Mary saying:

“As I pushed and shoved to move through the crowds to be as close to my son as I could, we came to a place in the road where he stopped. He saw me. And we looked into each others eyes. I didn’t want him to see my tears or know my pain, but I long ago accepted how thoroughly he knew me. The love from my heart poured out in the only embrace I could give him. My lips quietly said the prayer he taught us, “Father, may your Kingdom come and your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” He nodded so slightly, took a deep breath and moved on up the hill. The sword passing through my heart had blessed his mission and I knew he knew it. Thank him with me, even now, that he took up that mission for us. Thank him that he has tasted the sepration and loss that every person in the world knows who has lost a loved one. And, he has understood the heart of every loving mother who grieves at the suffering of her children. He has become completely at one with us” From “Stations” Ignatian Press.

    As Jesus looked into Mary’s heart so he looks into ours, and with those eyes that are completely one with us speaks with so much love:

“Consult your own heart and decide what kind of person you want to be. You have a brief journey on this planet–how will you treat yourself, your work, and those you meet along the way? Your values are not what you say, but how you treat people, how you run meetings, whom you hire, how you treat your child who wants to play when you come home exhausted, whether you inconvenience yourself to support your friends, and how you react in a host of daily moments (added) such as how you treat homeless people on the street, if you feed the homeless, advocate and provide housing, and health care for those who have none.” ( The Ignatian Book of Days).

    St. Ignatius said that love ought to be shown in deeds rather than in words.

If your deeds could speak, what statement did you make in the past twenty four hours?

Let us pray:

Savior of the world, save us from our sins, our sadness, and our self-deception. Give us courage to live in a world we can not fix with hope that has already been redeemed. Amen.

Stations of the Cross: The Fifth Station: Simon Helps Jesus Carry His Cross

    For a moment reflect upon what it must have been like for Jesus to simply not be able to carry the cross any further alone. A stranger was asked to assist Jesus.  Jesus came to know the experience of depending upon others.

    We all depend on one another. Look around, and see the individuals on the street, in the doorways, and meditate for a moment on the words of Thomas Merton:

“I was suddenly overwhelmed with the realization that I loved all those people, that they were mine, and I theirs, so that we could not be alien to one another even though we were total strangers. It was like waking from a dream of separateness. .”

How would our day be different if we could see every person as God’s beloved child?

Let us pray:

“O God most holy, in Jesus Christ you have laid a foundation upon which to build our Lives: Help us to follow your perfect law of love, that we may fulfill it and observe it to the end. Amen. (Revised Common Lectionary Prayer, page 6).

Father River Damien Sims, sfw, D.Min., D.S.T.

P.O. Box 642656

San Francisco, CA 94164


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