Way of the Cross

The Resurrection of Jesus

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Christ Rises From the Dead

The silence of the Father burst forth in stunning brilliance in the mystery of the glory and the Resurrection of Jesus. No witness was present at the first instant of the Resurrection. It was to glorify the Father, and out of love for His Mother and for us, that Jesus experienced the glory of the Resurrection of His wounded Heart, of His scourged and crucified body. Jesus rose again to manifest, to witness, this great victory of the Cross. This was a manifestation in splendor, in glory and in beauty, of all that He had experienced in suffering, humility and abandonment. (…)

In the mystery of the Resurrection, let us ask Mary for her faith, her hope and her love. We can live by this mystery from this very moment, and we ought to live by it at each instant of our lives. The essence of the mystery of the Resurrection is that eternity is ever present in the fabric of time. According to our human lives, we live in earthly time, but according to our divine life, we live in eternity. Eternity is, therefore always present at every instant of our lives, especially if we truly live by faith, by hope and by love.

Father MD Philippe, Way of the Cross

The way of the Cross by Father MD Philippe, the fourteenth station

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The Fourteenth Station: The Body of Jesus is Laid in the Sepulcher

Mary bore this last separation, this ultimate separation, in obedience to the requirement of this Sabbath, to adore the will of the Father in total poverty and self-abandonment. The Father wanted everything to be consummated right up to the very end, up to the burial in the tomb. It is for the day of my burial, were the words of Jesus to Judas when Mary, the sister of Lazarus, had poured an expensive perfume over His feet.

The perfume of great price was, in fact, the tears shed by Mary at the Cross, and at this ultimate separation of the Sepulcher; those are the tears Mary shed at La Salette, the tears Mary sheds today over the state of our world. Mary lived this great mystery of the Sepulcher. This last Sabbath was for her.

Father MD Philippe, Way of the Cross

The way of the Cross by Father MD Philippe, the twelfth station

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The Twelfth Station: Jesus Dies on the Cross

Saint Augustine tells us that it was when He was on the Cross that Jesus gave us His last teaching. The Cross is the pulpit of truth, and all those who want to witness to the truth know that there is no other pulpit than the Cross. This is where the wisdom of God is revealed to us in all its strength. Each of the last words of Jesus was etched in the heart of Mary. If we want to be especially near to the heart of Mary, these last words of Jesus also need to be etched in our own hearts. (…)

Let us ask Mary to help us live by this great holocaust of Love, just as she lived by it. May the wound to the Heart of Jesus, His cry of thirst, and the surrender of His entire self into the hands of the Father, become our source of wisdom, our brilliant guiding light. It is in the light of the Cross (and the Way of the Cross) that we must look at our own lives, the lives of our brothers and sisters, the life of the Church and, in fact, the history of the world.

Father MD Philippe, Way of the Cross

The way of the Cross by Father MD Philippe, the eleventh station

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The Eleventh Station: Jesus is Nailed to the Cross

At that moment, Jesus was between heaven and earth, but closer to earth, because it was the ultimate moment of the Incarnation. The Incarnation was for this very Sacrifice, in order to be the living Cross, simultaneously the Priest, the Victim and the Altar, and to be the martyr of martyrs, the poorest of the poor: The poor you will always have with you, but me you shall not always have. This is how Jesus had announced at Bethany His great poverty and self-effacement as the Crucified One.

Let us ask Mary, her who sees all in the light of the Holy Spirit, to instill in us the love of Christ crucified, and to love, as she loved them, the wounds of His hands and His feet; to love the One who accepted to be the One poorer than all, one before whom people hide their face because it is so bruised and despised.

Father MD Philippe, Way of the Cross

The way of the Cross by Father MD Philippe, the ninth station

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The Ninth Station: Jesus Falls for the Third Time

This third fall of Jesus was like a third brutal blow from the Devil. When He had reached the place where He was to be crucified, Jesus had to accept to be as crushed by the weight of the Cross before being crucified, and to know utter humiliation. His face against the ground and His whole body pinned under the Cross. It was for the pride of men that Jesus accepted to bear this humiliation in the depth of His heart. (…)

The Church, too experiences (and will experience again) such ultimate attacks of the Devil, who will appear victorious in the sight of all. It will be thought that he has succeeded in overwhelming Christ’s Church, just as he overwhelmed Jesus. Today’s Church bears the Cross, and sometimes it is as if her members, who ought to remain standing, are being overwhelmed.

Father MD Philippe, Way of the Cross

The way of the Cross by Father MD Philippe, the eighth station

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The Eighth Station: Jesus Speaks to the Daughters of Jerusalem

“Do not weep for me!” Weep rather for yourselves and for our children!” Jesus again surpassed His own suffering. In Him, love was (and is) victorious over all wounds, over all sufferings, over all rejections. The compassion of Christ surpassed all the wounds that He bore, turning itself tenderly and mercifully toward those who were pitying Him, but it was not pity that Jesus required. He bore His Cross to show us the way, so that we might learn to bear our own Cross with love. (…)

There was a great difference between Mary and the women who wept over their own suffering. Just as Mary bore suffering in a virginal manner, so too should we rise above suffering, so that it spurs us to love more profoundly and to advance further, and allows us to respond to the Divine Countenance and embrace of Jesus. Let us ask Mary for the grace to have a heart ever virginal in suffering, to never give up, because then we would be unable to embrace the will of the Father, for we would be withdrawing into ourselves and succumbing to our own fragility. May Mary grant us limpid clarity of heart in suffering as well as in joy.

Father MD Philippe, Way of the Cross

The way of the Cross by Father MD Philippe, the seventh station

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The Seventh Station: Jesus Falls for the Second Time

He was the one who appeared in the sight of all as the weakest and the most fragile of men. He who is the very strength of God, He who is love in its strongest, greatest, and most magnanimous aspect. He accepted to appear in such a condition of fragility. Mary loved Him all the more because He appeared so fragile. She bore with Jesus, in this second fall, all those whose fragility might discourage them, who are on the brink of despair. Let us also be intimately close to them, through the constancy of our love, through the endurance of our strength, and yet let it be a strength full of tenderness.

Father MD Philippe, Way of the Cross