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In these the sculptures are often approaching life-size and very elaborate. Remnants of these are often referred to as calvary hills. In , in answer to their petition, Pope Innocent XI granted to the Franciscans the right to erect stations within their churches.

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In , Pope Clement XII extended to all churches the right to have the stations, provided that a Franciscan father erected them, with the consent of the local bishop. At the same time the number was fixed at fourteen. In , the bishops of England were allowed to erect the stations by themselves, without the intervention of a Franciscan priest, and in this right was extended to bishops throughout the church.

The early set of seven scenes was usually numbers 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 11 and 14 from the list below. Although not traditionally part of the Stations, the Resurrection of Jesus is, in very rare instances, included as a fifteenth station.

Passionate poetry in motion

Out of the fourteen traditional Stations of the Cross, only eight have a clear scriptural foundation. Stations 3, 4, 6, 7, and 9 are not specifically attested to in the gospels in particular, no evidence exists of station 6 ever being known before medieval times and Station 13 representing Jesus's body being taken down off the cross and laid in the arms of his mother Mary seems to embellish the gospels' record, which states that Joseph of Arimathea took Jesus down from the cross and buried him. To provide a version of this devotion more closely aligned with the biblical accounts, Pope John Paul II introduced a new form of devotion, called the Scriptural Way of the Cross , on Good Friday He celebrated that form many times but not exclusively at the Colosseum in Rome , [15] [16] using the following sequence as published by the United States Catholic Conference of Bishops : [17].

In the Roman Catholic Church, the devotion may be conducted personally by the faithful, making their way from one station to another and saying the prayers, or by having an officiating celebrant move from cross to cross while the faithful make the responses. The stations themselves must consist of, at the very least, fourteen wooden crosses, pictures alone do not suffice, and they must be blessed by someone with the authority to erect stations.

Originally, the pope himself carried the cross from station to station, but in his last years when age and infirmity limited his strength, John Paul presided over the celebration from a stage on the Palatine Hill , while others carried the cross. Each year a different person is invited to write the meditation texts for the Stations.


Past composers of the Papal Stations include several non-Catholics. The pope himself wrote the texts for the Great Jubilee in and used the traditional Stations. Community celebrations are usually accompanied by various songs and prayers. Particularly common as musical accompaniment is the Stabat Mater.

At the end of each station the Adoramus Te is sometimes sung. The Alleluia is also sung, except during Lent. Some modern liturgists [21] say the traditional Stations of the Cross are incomplete without a final scene depicting the empty tomb and the resurrection of Jesus because Jesus' rising from the dead was an integral part of his salvific work on Earth.

Advocates of the traditional form of the Stations ending with the body of Jesus being placed in the tomb say the Stations are intended as a meditation on the atoning death of Jesus, and not as a complete picture of his life, death, and resurrection. Another point of contention, at least between some ranking liturgists and traditionalists, is the use of the "New Way of the Cross" being recited exclusively in the Philippines and by Filipinos abroad. Franz Liszt wrote a Via crucis for choir, soloists and piano or organ or harmonium in Peter Maxwell Davies 's Vesalii Icones , for male dancer, solo cello and instrumental ensemble, brings together the Stations of the Cross and a series of drawings from the anatomical treatise De humani corporis fabrica by the Belgian physician Andreas van Wesel Vesalius.

In Davies's sequence, the final "station" represents the Resurrection, but of Antichrist , the composer's moral point being the need to distinguish what is false from what is real.

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It was premiered in Stefano Vagnini 's modular oratorio, Via Crucis , [24] a composition for organ, computer, choir, string orchestra and brass quartet, depicts the fourteen Stations of the Cross. As the Stations of the Cross are prayed during the season of Lent in Catholic churches, each station is traditionally followed by a verse of the Stabat Mater , composed in the 13th century by Franciscan Jacopone da Todi. Dimitris Lyacos ' third part of the Poena Damni trilogy, The First Death , is divided in fourteen sections in order to emphasise the "Via Dolorosa" of its marooned protagonist during his ascent on the mount of the island which constitutes the setting of the work.

These fourteen sites along the Via Dolorosa are where the events of the Stations of the Cross happened, according to tradition. These 14 stops form a route ending at the Church of the Holy Sepulcher that pilgrims have walked for centuries and are the inspiration for the Stations of the Cross in many churches today. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. For other uses, see Stations of the Cross disambiguation.

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Jesus Christ in the Catacombs of Rome 4th century. Main article: Scriptural Way of the Cross. Church of England. Retrieved 20 October Holy Trinity Lutheran Church. Trinity UMC. Archived from the original on 17 April Retrieved 17 April Michael's Episcopal Church. Retrieved 3 March Christians in the Twenty-First Century. Archived from the original on 7 January Retrieved 8 April Giambologna: Narrator of the Catholic Reformation.

University of California Press. Just as we can learn what is in an orange when it is squeezed, and just as we can learn more about who we are when we examine how we react to the challenges we face, we can learn more about Jesus by reflecting on what came out of him during the most intense period of his life. Though Jesus seems passive throughout his Passion—he never lifts a finger against anyone and he barely speaks—his acceptance, forgiveness, and nonviolence are nonetheless revolutionary, providing first-century countercultural insight on how to live justly in the twenty-first-century world.

We can see this in how he reacts throughout his Passion in the Scriptural Stations of the Cross. Here are just a few examples:. Jesus is in the Garden of Gethsemane. He prays. Jesus is condemned by the Sanhedrin. He is steadfast.

The Stations of the Cross : Clarion Review

Jesus is denied by Peter. Jesus meets the women of Jerusalem. He thinks of others. Jesus promises his kingdom to the good thief. He forgives. Jesus speaks to his mother and the disciple. He watches over his family.

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  • As Jesus responds to his sorrow, he is expressing to us the best of what it means to be human. There are no miracles here. No sudden healings. No casting out of demons. No parables. Yet, there is something extraordinary here, and we can see that in how Jesus responds when the world puts the squeeze on him.