Play this music as you contemplate the image for this station.
Pause and hold your heart and the whole world in your hands.
In this First Station, Jesus is handed his cross–
and with it, his fate to die
a terrifying and agonizing death on it.
You can’t find a better example for injustice:
Our Lord is condemned to death
even if Pilate has just openly declared him innocent!
What must our Lord be thinking and feeling?
He must have been sad and scared,
but also, mostly bewildered:
After all, he didn’t do anything to deserve this.
What have you been thinking and feeling these days?
Like so many others, you must be feeling sad or scared,
not to mention bewildered too:
What have we done to deserve this?
We don’t understand–just as Jesus did not understand.
But our Lord shows us that it is possible
to keep our faith even without understanding.
He teaches us that we can be brave and strong
even if we are afraid and unsure.
We can imagine our Lord taking a deep breath
as he accepted the cross,
summoning every bit of his courage and strength and hope
as he braced himself for what loomed ahead of him.
We can try to do the same as we face this uncertain future:
We don’t know how it will unfold and how it will all end.
But we need to make a choice:
We could simply join the social media bandwagon
help spread fear and frustration,
and contribute to a collective meltdown that nobody needs.
Or, we could take the same deep breath as Jesus,
brace ourselves with every ounce of courage and faith we can muster,
and choose to keep offering this world
much-needed words of encouragement,
much-needed prayers, and the much-needed hope.
This was the choice that Jesus made
when he accepted his cross.
He made this choice–
even if he did not deserve it,
even if he did not understand–
He did it for the world–for us.
And today he’s telling us:
“I’ve been there. I’ve seen worse.
Hang in there. Take courage and be strong.
Do it for the world.”
There is a timely phrase in English worth mulling over:
“the better angels of our nature.”
It refers to the “positive attributes of the human nature.”
Times like these can either bring out the worst in us
–or summon our very best selves.
Let us pray that today we choose as our Lord did
as he received his cross:
That we choose our better angels.
Spend a few moments
telling the Lord how you feel–
and what you can try to do today
in response to him.
“Behold the Wood” from St. Louis Jesuits. Image for Station from Fratel Venzo. “Better Angels” from MV Francisco & JGo SJ.
Feel free to share your thoughts, questions, and prayers below.
88 replies on “I. Jesus is condemned.”
Yesterday, I was told by our school director that I will be furlough for the month of April, instead of the initial discussion that I would be teaching part time. I took the news lightly because I know God is always there with me whenever I go through tough times. I used to worry a lot, but after the many trials I faced, with God on my side, I got braver and stopped asking why such things happen. I know God has something good for me after this, for He is truly good.
As You submit Yourself to the Will of God, Jesus, I submit myself to Your Will.
Calling my angel to guide me. This pandemic will release so much goodness and the time I need to reflect on my life – full introspection and improvement. Build my roadmap. Discern my higher nature in the uncertainty and the dark. Thank You Lord.
i realized that i let my fears get the better of me. And i feel anger towards others and myself. I envy those that can do what i can’t, and it angers me more, it makes me think less of myself.
then maybe it’s You that sent those people to step in when i can’t. It is you that fills my gaps through others.
Forgive me Lord, for not knowing your acts, and forgive me for thinking ill of You, others and myself.
Continue to help me to overcome my fears.
God is love. He will put love in your heart , overflowing love. It will not be able to contain itself so it will reach others.
The darkness seems long and unending. Everyday in the news is about how this pandemic is bringing the world to its knees. Just as when we think that some countries successfully found a way thru it, some event will prove us wrong… We all wait in fear as it circles around us… What I know now is to just take this cross and trust that whatever happens, You will not forsake us.
Though were in a better situation at this moment, grant me the grace not to be complacent. Grant me the grace to be full of concern and compassion to my brothers and sisters who are in less favorable circumstances during this time of pandemic. Give the grace to give more and be more Christ to others at this time. Amen.
I have a lot of fears and insecurities. The fear of not being accepted, the fear of not being preferred, the fear of not being validated and praised. I also have vices such as addiction and gluttony the corrupts my soul, not only my physical body.
But as I reflect with this first station of the cross where Jesus was condemned, it dawns on me that Jesus had fears too – but these were fears of selflessness, frightened but surrendering, having extreme difficulty (emotionally, not only physically) being mocked and betrayed yet He looked at us all with love.
In my case, I will try to accept the present – the here and now. That is – being a child who is nothing without God. I always compete with people (always wanting to feel a sense of superiority) — but I will stop this, I must stop this because it is not my purpose to be at the centerstage and even at the expense of others. My purpose is to love inspite of the difficulty life brings. But this love must start with loving myself.
Lord, please create in me a clean heart, with pure thoughts and cleanse my soul. That I will always surrender to you and be others-centered as you were; giving my life to others, as you did; and saying Yes I will love myself so I can love others. Amen.
As the world swirls around us in a tizzy about the pandemic, my personal world is also getting ready to sprint with a personal crisis. What stuck with me in this station is the acceptance. There were no thoughts on “why me.” It is another crisis that I need to breathe in. The other takeaway for me is the better angels. To me, they are not inside my head but other people who have carried me through my crises. I am blessed to have them in my life.
Lord, I will embrace this. I will carry it with dignity knowing there is a purpose that only you know. I will pray hard and ask for help and prayers from the better angels that surround me.
As the days have gone by, I have become more and more aware of the many people who have had to leave their families to work to keep things going in our society, especially those attending to the sick or dying. They must be very tired. They are our better angels. Ordinary people being very brave one day at a time. We may never learn their names, never have the chance to cheer them on and thank them. When it is my turn to be called to serve, let me trust that I can also be the better angel.
My family just had a passionate discussion re: death-wish on evil politicians vs being careful about you wish for. Another brother asks, Why are good people always on the frontlines and the unscrupulous ones always within safety?
Then, Father Richard Rohr says, Practice TONGLEN. Here it is …
Today I share a wonderful meditative practice from Tibetan Buddhist teacher Pema Chödrön.
Tonglen is . . . the most effective tool for developing courage and arousing our sense of oneness with others. . . .
There are various ways that tonglen is taught, but the essence of it is breathing in that which is unpleasant and unwanted and breathing out—sending out—that which is pleasing, relieving, enjoyable. In other words, we breathe in the things we usually try to avoid, such as our sadness and anger [and suffering], and we send out the things we usually cling to, such as our happiness and good health. We breathe in pain and send out pleasure. We breathe in disgrace and send out good reputation. We breathe in loss and send out gain. This is an exceedingly counterhabitual practice. It helps us overcome our fear of suffering and tap into the compassion that’s inherent in us all.
I THOUGHT THIS WAS SUCH A TRANSCENDING PRACTICE! TONGLEN. Embrace the suck, the suffering, the pain, the sadness, the anger, the loss. PROCESS THEM ALL AND LET IT DIE INSIDE YOU. Then, release into the universe joy, goodness, mercy, understanding, good health. Inhale the negativity and exhale positivity.
As a healthcare worker, and as I await the COVID test results of the patients i took care of, this line reverberates, “but our Lord shows us that it is possible to keep our faith even without understanding.”
Yes, to brace yourself as Jesus did when He said, Father take this cup from me, but not my will but yours.
I do not know what the future brings. Am tired to think na, i will just put my trust in you Lord.
Lord save your people… ??❤
This crisis is heavy on us. Just like Christ , we don’t understand. But what Pulls us through at a time like this is our Faith . We don’t know why all these is happening and we don’t know when it will end. But our faith and trust in the suffering Christ knows that HE will HEAL THE WORLD and we will soon understand the bigger purpose of this all. More than ever, We just have to strengthen our faith.
Jesus accepted his cross with great trust, love and obedience to the Father. As this cross of pandemic weighs heavily on our shoulders, may we all be blessed with the same trust, love and obedience to the Father as Jesus did.
For in this very dire circumstances, we are made to choose – CHOOSE LOVE, CHOOSE HOPE AND CHOOSE LIFE.
I will just start the station of the cross.
Lord, I feel empty. I feel uncertain about what will happen tomorrow.
In this feeling of uncertainty, I put my trust in you.
Fides querens intellectum – “faith seeking understanding”
Sometimes we want to understand everything, why this pandemic, why this crises in our life, or even the joy amidst these.
But sometimes we don’t need to understanding everything, maybe we simply need to TRUST.
Trust, have faith and patience, to someone who had overcome the worst – hanging and dying on the cross -yet becomes triumphant in His resurrection.
Let us pray for the grace of trust and confidence to the Father, Son and Holy Spirit in this moments of uncertainties
Great initiative! May Pinslight be flooded with all the blessings your heart longs for, as well as all who will have been reached by this holy effort. I find it impossible to feel or fully realize what Jesus went through, but it must have been crushing, terrifyingly scary, pure terror beyond words. Lord, have metcy on us!
My feeling is one of frustration. Frustration with how so many in government still cannot find it in their hearts to do what is right! So many people are sacrificing, the doctors, nurses, grocery workers, delivery men, mostly from the private sector. Even the donations are mostly coming in from businesses. Where have all our taxes gone?!
Those few in government doing their jobs are still being put down by the government simply because they are from the other party. They are like Pontius Pilate, condemning Jesus despite His innocence. I try to look for the better angels of my own nature by not thinking ill of these people, but praying for their enlightenment. It is hard for me not to share these frustrations on social media. I feel the obligation to do so in the hope that people will see and learn to finally do what is right, but I pray for the strength to do it with love, compassion and good intentions. Sometimes, my frustration gets the better of me and I add comments which may be hurtful or insensitive. Lord, I ask for your guidance, discernment and strength to overcome my anger and frustrations so that I may continue to point out injustices with a spirit of hope and positive change.
Our Lord is condemned to death
even if Pilate has just openly declared him innocent!
We are facing the same threat of death.. I fear not only for my life but for the lives of my loved ones, my family, my relatives, and friends.. for the whole nation.. for the world.. and i am so far from them…I live alone ..but i felt more alone cuz of this ECQ.
There are articles spreading in the social media that this pandemic is manmade..which was created by heartless people for thier own greedy reason, to the expense of so many innocent person. So we ask ourselves now: do we really deserve this? Its like us being condenmned too..and we have a government that we feel we dont deserve…
But whether or not tuis pandemic is caused by accident, by nature or by man’s greed for power.. in the end, when we are blessed enough to outlived this..we all must carry these learnings..these realization..in our second lives..
Thank you Lord for making us see..through this trials and tribulations .. our sins .. and unlike You.. we are not innocent. PLEASE have mercy on us all and spare us one more time, using you Almighty power to stop this pandemic, and bring true justice..so that we may live in Your glory, forever, in Jesus name, Amen
I have mixed feeling and emotions., scarred, uncertain, angry, helpless, loved yet unloved.
Mercy and Compassion oh Lord for me, my family, FRONTLINERS and for the whole world ., Spare us oh Lord from this PANDEMIC .
We want to be more of service to you in our church activities,
Strengthen our Faith please
In this we pray ., Amen❣
1st Station – Here I step into the shoes of the doctors, and frontliners, who through no fault of their own happen to be in a hosptal where COVID-19 victims are hospitalized They are tired and sometimes hungry for food, lacking in medical supplies and most of all worried for their families at home. Like Jesus, they have a big divide separating them from those who love them, they cannot go home for fear of infecting others. They are afraid that they will be infected, get sick and finally succumb to the infection. And yet, they embrace the cross to fulfill the oath they took as new doctors and nurses. Dear Jesus, as You embrace your cross, allow these doctors and nurses and frontliners to get encouragement from how You embraced yours.
This is such a beautiful reflection. Thank you for sharing .. oftentimes and I must admit I fall in this category to think of myself first.. worried for myself and my family. But these frontliners they are in the midst of this and not much choice because it’s their duty first and foremost, the choice to go or to stay, I am sure they themselves, when it first broke out in China, did not think that it would get this bad. I personally have family in the medical profession tho they are not in the frontlines now, if this does not abate, there is a possibility that they too would be drafted as 2nd or 3rd flanks of this war against an invisible enemy. Lord I lift them up to you and all health professionals who put their lives on the line, pls send your Holy Spirit to cover them with the mantle of Your loving protection, shielding them as they work tirelessly to do Your work here on earth, helping the sick to get well, accompanying them since they are alone with no family beside them, pls Lord lay your hand upon them and give them strength and courage, and Thru them heal the sick. Amen.
Scared… angry… lost… restless…lazy to do anything – all at the same time.
sad because I feel humanity deserved this.. apprehensive because of the future post-Covid.. angry because of the politics. Lord, may I have the faith you had to accept all of what is happening and the resolve to move forward according to your will. Holy Spirit guide us. Mama Mary protect us. Amen
Sometimes, I do not know if I am doing the right thing or the better thing (the greater good) because often, I feel it is the unpopular choice. I find myself standing alone for something I believe is important, something that would be better for many and not just a few. It is difficult to choose to be kind and generous when people are unkind or worse, apathetic.
Now that we are in the midst of a pandemic, it gets harder to be kind and compassionate to those who are cruel or indifferent. So I beg for the grace of compassion and understanding, of kindness even if I am pushed to be a horrible person or a mean one.
I imagine Christ inviting me to carry my own cross beside Him and being told, “Do not worry, I, too, am trying my best to carry the load.” Oh, please, Lord, help me be like You.
Jesus understood perfectly why he needed to be condemned. If not, where will we find Salvation? What He was aghast at was the total ingratitude of all the people He had helped who forgot the good that he did . That too He needed to repair for. Many posts believe that what we are experiencing is some form of chastisement, purification. God permits this. We understand. Just like Jesus understood. But it did not make his cross or hours less painful. As Jesus prayed for us and continues to do so let us put our hope in him with our prayers. He is God, He knows.
Thank you for the making this online Way of the Cross. Our community held a Friday Way of the Cross for each street in our village several weeks before Holy Week. With the current situation, those were cancelled. Only then does one realize how much one can miss God…no mass, no communion, no Way of the Cross. In God’s wisdom, He has blessed us with communication tools to continue His presence.
It is also these tools can be abused to spread rumors. I’m certainly guilty of this. It’s so easy to sit in one’s home to chat on Viber while people are putting their lives at stake helping others.
I resolve to only share encouragement & tales of courage & self-sacrifice as a way to help our frontliners. To use these tools to help others.
Thank you Lord for making us aware of how we can help during this time. You are always there for us. It is we who have forgotten You. As part of the free will You have given us, You allowed us to do this. These are the times to return back to You. For us to realize how much we need You!
I am sad. I am scared. I am worried yet very hopeful in our Lord. I know and believe that He will help us throughout this crisis. I pray that I will continue to hang on and be strong and brave against the temptation of the evil one to just be afraid, worried, and depressed. I thank God for giving me opportunities to help even in my simplest ways. This way I am made to realize I am still blessed
Those who died of Covid19 died a very lonely death, with no loved ones around them. Even those who were left behind were not even able to embrace the ones who died. Jesus on the other hand was embraced by His loving mother Mary, the Pieta.
We pray that our Mother Mary embrace those who fell victims to this virus just the same, through our Lord Jesus Christ, Amen.
Thank you for this! We commend them to our Blessed Mother.
Jesus pls continue to give me the grace to embrace your Holy will with delight.
My intention for the first Station is the renewal of my son. For Jesus to recreate him. To creat A new snd clean heart so that he will start serving the church and his faith restored. And especially for Mike a doctor who I heard was intubated. I pray Lord he be healed and all other FRONT-LINERS who risk their precious lives to save us and the world, in Jesus’ name , AMEN.??????
Much needed reflection for this time.
Thank you! Blessings and keep safe!
So scared and lost but this helped me to face the fears Im feeling right now
It is all right to be scared, but remember that we can be strong even when we’re scared. Hang in there.
I am taken aback by the first station- Jesus is handed His cross, and the fate to die on it, a terrifying and agonizing death.
The current situation immediately came to mind. The prospect of contracting the covid-19 virus, being put in ICU, gasping for breath, suffering the pains of intubation, terrified and agonizing with the prospect of dying all alone and never seeing your loved ones, not even being given the last rites by a priest they will not allow near you!
Lord, will i be brave enough to face death the same way you bravely did upon receiving the cross?
Will the supposedly great faith and trust in You that i profess each day hold me thru? Lord, i am scared!
I fear, too, for all those now afflicted, for the doctors and frontliners now lying on ICU beds themselves, infected and aware of what can come next.
Lord, stay with us all. Even if it would require a miracle of great proportions, which we are not worthy of, Lord we beg for Your mercy! Spare us, stay with us, save us! Save Your people, Lord!
Thank you for your sharing! You’ve spoken for all of us. We all feel afraid, but we must keep the faith! Blessings to you, Bernie!
Help me how to choose like how you
made your choice when you accepted
Thank you for sharing your prayer. Blessings.
Seek the better angels in ourselves…finding one’s meaning or essence amidst life’s turmoil…
God, guide us through this crisis; as we find the better angels in ourselves to fulfill our mission for others.Amen.
Blessings to you. Thank you for sharing.
I wish there could be a tagalog version of this that we can spread to others who are more comfortable with the vernacular.
Good idea. Let me see what we can do.
Just as you saw beyond the hate before you, as you took your steps to your death, I pray you guide our eyes, O Lord, that we may see beyond all the hate and anger that we see, that we feel. Amen.
Thank you for offering this prayer. It speaks for us all.
We are afraid and unsure. We don’t know how this crisis will end. But Jesus reminds us to take courage and have faith. And be kind, be the best versions of ourselves.
Yes, let’s all take courage.
Gabriel Marcel said that the same situation that tempts us to despair invites us to hope!
Jesus said, ‘Do not be afraid. I am with you!’ Fear is a tool of the devil to make us forget God and default from doing good for others. It makes us afraid to extend a helping hand because we are afraid of going out. It makes us look only at our own welfare and forget that of others.
We need to be cautious but may we not be paralyzed from doing what we can to help others at this time. This is our cross and, after the example of Jesus, let us bear our cross.
‘Malheur,’ as Simone Weil taught, is an experience of God. Let us all develop a sense of God at this time of our ‘visitation.’
Thank you for your profound and much-needed sharing. Indeed fear is the devil’s tool. We must resist it.
I am overwhelmed by what is happening now. At times Ibfear for my life & those of my loved ones. I pity the frontliners who have to fight this virus head on. My heart goes out to those are afflicted & those who have died especially in the line of duty . I lift all these in prayer & hang on to my faith that gives me courage to face each day anew. I know God walks with me each of this very difficult way as he did when he walked to His CRoss. I pray that He lead me to where He wants me to go & guide me as to what He wants me to do for others. God bless us all??
Thank you, Ana, for your beautiful prayer. It sums up what we all feel. Blessings to you, and take courage and keep the faith.
Forgive me Lord for my lack of faith
Thank you for sharing. WE all need help to strengthen our faith. It is times like this that we can exercise our faith and in the process, like our muscles, strengthen it! Let us exercise and strengthen our faith!
I would like to follow the stations of the cross everyday. Please notify me so that I will know that there’s a new post As this is a nice way to reflect what’s been happening to the whole world. Thank you!
Will include you in our mailing list.
Me too! Thank you.
Please include me too in your mailing list
You will find all the links here: https://pinsoflight.net/2020/03/24/the-way-of-the-cross-in-a-time-of-pandemic/
The path of my life is not a straight line but crooked. But early on, I try to understand my Christian faith and through the years, nurture and deepen it. It is always a struggle.
But it is through this faith that enabled me to walk and pass through these crooked lines.
The lines that humanity are passing through these times are not only crooked but full of potholes and if we fall, we are not certain that we can get up and continue our walk. But if we continue to believe and trust in HIM, and ask HIS help, am certain that we can get up, continue and finish our walk.
Our faith will serve us well especially in times like this. Keep the faith, and thanks for sharing.
It is very hard not to be frustrated with this government … but your reminder gave me pause… maybe if we hope for the better angels in our nature, then people in power will rise up and do what’s right. Blessed are those who have used their resources to help the greater number of people in need of care and guidance.
I know what you mean about the government, but we need to focus on things we have control over so we won’t feel overly frustrated. WE need every ounce of hope we can muster. Keep strong.
The path of my life is not a straight line but crooked. But early on, I try to understand my Christian faith and through the years, I try to nurture it.
It is through this faith that enabled me to walk and pass through these crooked lines.
The lines that humanity are passing through these times are not only crooked but full of potholes and if we fall, we are not certain that we can get up and continue our walk. But if we continue to believe and trust in HIM, am certain that we can get up, continue and finish our walk.
Thank you Jesus for giving us hope in this time of uncertainty & fear for we know that you will never leave & forsake us. We lift to your most Sacred Heart all those suffering from.this deadly virus so that they will be restored to health. We also ask for your protection & safety especially the frontliers sacrificing their own lives to save others’ lives. Amen
Thank you for sharing this much-needed prayer.
Thank you Sr.
I would not join social media to spread information on fear and frustrations to people. I would pause and think first before posting any information. Now I pray for an ounce of faith daily and Jesus would give me 10 X more of courage and hope. This would help me to spread hope and cheer to more people in this uncertain times.
I pray for our country, our leaders and our doctors, nurses, janitors, frontliners in this very critical time give them the strength to endure and guide our leaders to make the right choices.
Pls send reminder
Will include you in our mailing list.
Here you go: https://pinsoflight.net/2020/03/24/the-way-of-the-cross-in-a-time-of-pandemic/
In this time of uncertainty Lord .we hold on to you..we pray for our frontliners ,for those affected with the COVID 19 ,we pray for our families co-workers friends and for the entire world.may we all realize that holding on to you and putting our wholehearted trust and faith in you will restore us and keep us safe..thank you Jesus we know that this will come to end ..in Jesus mighty name..Amen
Thank you for your prayer, Mina. Blessings on you and your loved ones.
Thank you. I would not join the social media to forward fearful or exaggerated information to frighten people. I would pause and think before sending any information. I hope my faith increased daily even an ounce is enough for me as I know Jesus would give me 10x more of courage and hope. I want to pray for all those who do not believe in God and those who are suffering from the infection. Amen
We commend our frontline workers in the hospitals, in the streets,in supermarkets and wet markets, in restaurants, those who deliver food to our home, volunteers who deliver food to those who are serving us.We ask for thy protection on them and their families. Have mercy,Lord.
Dear Jesus, guide me through this rocky road. Give me the grace & courage.
Thank you for sharing your prayer. You helped me pray through the words you posted.
Thank you for praying for the frontliners. They are the heroes of the day.
Jesus, you embraced your cross even if you didn’t deserve it, even if you didn’t understand it… Help us embrace our cross now. Help us believe that you will not forsake us. Heal us! Strengthen us!
Thank you for your touching prayer.
We pray for the frontliners. I think they are the ones who feel this the most- the uncertainty and fear. Yet they choose to be the better angels and continue to serve and save lives. We pray for them, for the Lord to infuse courage and strength, especially these trying times. Salamat sa inyo.
Very timely in this time of chaos and uncertainty. I choose to bring out my “better angels.” I pray for more strength and protection for the people who are dealing with this pandemic- the doctor, the nurses and others who are helping us to face this virus.
Thank you for your encouraging sharing.