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A Salesian Way of the Cross
Based on the Writing of St. Francis de Sales. Translated and somewhat amplified by The Most Rev. Lewis S. Fiorelli, O.S.F.S, Superior General of the Oblates of St. Francis de Sales
The Way of the Cross of suffering and affliction is a sure way, one which leads to God and to the perfection of his love if we are faithful.
First Station -- Jesus Is Condemned To Death
The Cross is from God, but it is only "cross" if we do not join ourselves to it; for when we are strongly resolved to desire the cross which God gives to us then it is no longer a "cross" at all. If it is from God, why do we not desire it?
Second Station -- Jesus Is Given His Cross
The Cross has been sanctified because it was the instrument which Jesus used for our Redemption. All Christians who aspire to heaven must take up the cross of the Lord and follow him. This will mean walking in his steps, imitating his virtues and having but one purpose and goal: his.
Third Station -- Jesus Falls The First Time
Notice the infinite goodness of the Savior who wished to die the death of men and women so as to enable us to live according to the original expectation for Adam, that is, to live God's life. But to better grasp the humility of Our Lord, listen to what St. Paul writes: "Though he was God's Son, he emptied himself." (Phil. 2:6-7 freely) O, God, but it is wondrous that the Eternal Word should empty himself and set aside his proper glory for his creatures who measure up so poorly to his love!
Fourth Station -- Jesus Meets His Mother
The Mother of Christ seeks out her Son who is the life of her life. And why does she seek him out? To be ever near him, her Son and her God.
Fifth Station -- Simon Of Cyrene Helps Jesus
The evangelists do not name the majority of people who figure in the Passion. But they do recall the name of Simon who helps our Lord carry his cross. The cross is the royal gate by which we enter the temple of holiness. Love this altogether precious cross; look upon it with eyes of love.
Sixth Station -- Veronica Cleanses The Face of Jesus
I reflect upon the manner in which the Lord suffers. In his heart, he suffers willingly, with patience and love. The cross is a remedy capable of healing all our evils.
Seventh Station -- Jesus Falls The Second Time
He suffers in order to witness to his love for us. O, how great is his love! Lord, I do not know if I have any love at all, but if I do, it is so little that it is content to shed a single tear; and it believes itself perfected when it utters a few sighs. And yet, O Good God, how much I insist and protest that I want to love you and give you my entire heart!
Eighth Station -- Jesus Meets The Women Of Jerusalem
Christ has made it clear that he loves our tears when they are caused by love. If we have tears, let us cry them altogether simply, because we certainly could not have a more worthy subject over which to cry.
Ninth Station -- Jesus Falls The Third Time
My iniquity is indeed great. O, Lord, who will deliver me from this labyrinth if not you? We would have reason to fear if we relied on our own strength. For he is for us.
Tenth Station -- Jesus Is Stripped Of His Clothing
Christ stripped teaches us what we must do to please him: strip our hearts of all sorts of unworthy affections and pretenses, no longer loving them but desiring nothing other than him.
Eleventh Station -- Jesus Is Nailed To The Cross
The Son of God is nailed to the Cross. What puts him there? Certainly it is love. Well, since it is certain that he died for us the least we ought to do for him is to live from love. He who wants to kiss Christ must mount his cross and be wounded by the thorns of his crown.
Twelfth Station -- Jesus Dies On The Cross
Our Lord chose the death of the Cross to witness to his Love. There he offered himself in love, unto love, by love and of love.
Thirteenth Station -- Jesus Is Taken Down From The Cross
Love draws all the pains, torments, sufferings, sorrows, wounds, passion, Cross of our Lord into the heart of his holy Mother. The sword of death which cut through the body of this well-beloved Son also cut through the heart of this all loving Mother.
Fourteenth Station -- Jesus Is Placed In The Tomb
Love and death co-penetrate one another in the Savior's passion. We must die to every other love in order to live from Jesus' love, so that we may not die eternally.
Fifteenth Station -- The Resurrection Of Jesus
That we may live in your eternal love, O Savior of our souls, we sing eternally, "Live, Jesus! Jesus is the one I love! Live, Jesus, you whom I love. I love Jesus who lives and reigns forever and ever. Amen!"
© 1993 by Rev. Lewis S. Fiorelli, OSFS