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Way of the Cross in Arkansas

Stabat Mater

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Feb. 16, 2018
Stations of the Cross
Immaculate Conception Church - Fort Smith
Feb. 16, 2018
Stations of the Cross
St. Augustine Church - North Little Rock
Feb. 23, 2018
Stations of the Cross
Immaculate Conception Church - Fort Smith
Feb. 23, 2018
Stations of the Cross
St. Augustine Church - North Little Rock
March 2, 2018
Stations of the Cross
Immaculate Conception Church - Fort Smith
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Walking in the Footsteps of Christ

Christian pilgrims who take part in the Via Dolorosa (Way of the Cross) in Jerusalem follow a route of 14 stations that have been used since the time of the Crusades. Members of the Order of St. Francis, the religious community that oversees custody of the Christian sites in the Holy Land, lead the Stations of the Cross every Friday afternoon along the Via Dolorosa. The information for the stations on this page was taken from "The Stations of the Cross in Jerusalem" by Father John Kenneth Campbell, OFM. The photos were taken along the Via Dolorosa in March 2011 during the Arkansas Catholic Pilgrimage to the Holy Land. The map (above) shows the sites along the Via Dolorosa that are named in the stations. The Stations of the Cross below describe where each station is located along the Via Dolorosa in the old city of Jerusalem, the place where Jesus carried his cross to his death. The prayers and reflections are from the Way of the Cross led by Pope Francis on Good Friday 2013.

Introduction

First Station:

Pilate condemns Jesus to die

This station begins in the courtyard of the Omariya Moslem College on the street called the Via Dolorosa. This is the traditional location of the Praetorium of Pilate and the Lithostrotos, the place where Jesus was scourged, condemned and where he received his crown of thorns.

Leader: We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you.
Response: Because by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.

Reflection

Second Station:

Jesus accepts his cross

This station is made along the road between the Omariya Moslem College and the Franciscan museum and library.

Leader: We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you.
Response: Because by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.

Reflection

Third Station:

Jesus falls the first time

This station is located a short walk from the Ecce Homo ("Behold the Man") Church at the corner of the Via Dolorosa and El Wad Street. Though not mentioned in the Gospels, it is believed Jesus fell near the ancient Fish Gate.

Leader: We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you.
Response: Because by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.

Reflection

Fourth Station:

Jesus meets his afflicted mother

An image of Jesus meeting his mother with the cross appears on the doorway of a small chapel to mark this station. This event is also not mentioned in the Bible.

Leader: We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you.
Response: Because by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.

Reflection

Fifth Station:

Simon helps carry the cross

A small chapel was built in 1895 and dedicated to Simon of Cyrene to mark the fifth station. Earlier on this spot was the first home for the Franciscans when they came to Jerusalem in 1229.

Leader: We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you.
Response: Because by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.

Reflection

Sixth Station:

Veronica wipes the face of Jesus

Only about 40 yards from the fifth station a small etching (ST. VI) is carved into a wall and marks the home of Veronica and the sixth station. Evidence of Veronica cleaning Jesus' face does not appear in the Gospels, but tradition holds that his image remained on her cloth.

Leader: We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you.
Response: Because by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.

Reflection

Seventh Station:

Jesus falls the second time

Though not in Scripture, tradition holds that in the time of the crucifixion, a copy of Jesus' death sentence was posted on an old gate nearby. This gate later became known as the Judgment Gate.

Leader: We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you.
Response: Because by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.

Reflection

Eighth Station:

Jesus speaks to women of Jerusalem

To the right of the seventh station and up a flight a stairs the route turns onto a street called Aqabat el Kanqa where a Latin cross and the letters "NIKA" which means "Jesus Christ conquers," is carved into the wall of the Greek Orthodox Convent of St. Charalambos.

Leader: We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you.
Response: Because by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.

Reflection

Ninth Station:

Jesus falls a third time

The route continues through a wide stairway and dark passage to the ninth station. It is tradition that Jesus fell a third time here before his final climb of Mount Calvary.

Leader: We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you.
Response: Because by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.

Reflection

10th Station:

Jesus is stripped of his garments

Coming into the main square of the Basilica of the Holy Sepulchre, on our right we find the steps leading up to the small Franciscan chapel where Jesus was stripped of his clothes.

Leader: We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you.
Response: Because by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.

Reflection

11th Station:

Jesus is nailed to the cross

Within the Latin chapel in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, the 11th station houses modern mosaics that illustrate Jesus being nailed to the cross.

Leader: We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you.
Response: Because by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.

Reflection 

12th Station:

Jesus dies on the cross

In the Greek Orthodox chapel, also in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, is the place of Christ's death on Calvary. A fissure in the rock displays the damage caused by the earthquake that followed Christ's death.

Leader: We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you.
Response: Because by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.

Reflection

13th Station:

Jesus is taken down from the cross

An altar in an archway between the 11th and 12th stations marks the 13th station where Jesus was taken down from the cross following this death.

Leader: We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you.
Response: Because by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.

Reflection

14th Station:

Jesus is laid in the tomb

Returning to the ground level, the 14th station can be found in the rotunda of the basilica. This spot is accepted as the genuine place of Christ's burial by most Eastern and Western churches.

Leader: We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you.
Response: Because by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.

Reflection

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Lent Resources

Way of the Cross in Arkansas

Stabat Mater

Watch Stations on YouTube

History of Stations of the Cross

Calendar of Events

Feb. 16, 2018
Stations of the Cross
Immaculate Conception Church - Fort Smith
Feb. 16, 2018
Stations of the Cross
St. Augustine Church - North Little Rock
Feb. 23, 2018
Stations of the Cross
Immaculate Conception Church - Fort Smith
Feb. 23, 2018
Stations of the Cross
St. Augustine Church - North Little Rock
March 2, 2018
Stations of the Cross
Immaculate Conception Church - Fort Smith