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Traditional 14 Stations of the Cross
by Dr. Ralph F. Wilson
The Stations of the Cross (Way of the Cross, Via Crucis, Via Dolorosa, Way of Sorrows) is a traditional way to consider the last hours of Jesus' life. The devotional practice is said to have begun with St. Francis of Assisi and extended throughout the Roman Catholic Church during the medieval period. It is also sometimes observed in Anglican and Lutheran churches.
I was introduced to it by seeing stations of the cross walks at Catholic retreat centers at training seminars and retreats I have attended. During the day, I'll often walk to each of the stations and then pause to meditate on the event depicted by each station. You'll usually find the 14 traditional Stations of the Cross inside Catholic sanctuaries, as well.
The Traditonal Way of the Cross
The traditional 14 Stations are given below. I have also included scriptures for each where appropriate. (Stations 3, 4, 6, 7, 9, and Mary's presence at 13 not specifically attested to.)
Since, however, of the 14 traditional stations, only 8 have clear scriptural foundation, Pope St. John Paul II introduced a new form, the Scriptural or Biblical Way of the Cross on Good Friday 1991 in the Colleseum in Rome. Though the Way of the Cross is designed primarily as a Good Friday devotional exercise, an Alternate or Protestant form of the stations of the cross includes the Resurrection as the final station to emphasize that the cross isn't the end. More links and history.
Copyright © 1985-2013, Ralph F. Wilson. <pastorjoyfulheart.com> All rights reserved. A single copy of this article is free. Do not put this on a website. See legal, copyright, and reprint information.
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