The Women of Jerusalem

The first time my then fiancé and I prayed the Way of the Cross together it was lead with one of John Paul II’s meditations. In the past few years I have only prayed the Stations during Lent, rather than Fridays in general.

Such a pity to neglect such a powerful way of prayer most of the year!

Jesus meets the women of Jerusalem.

But Jesus turning to them said,
“Daughters of Jerusalem do not weep for me,
but weep for yourselves and for your children.
For behold the days are coming when they will say,
blessed are the barren, and the wombs that never bore
and the breasts that never gave suck.
Then they will begin to say to the mountains,
‘Fall on us’; and to the hills, ‘Cover us.’
For if they do this when the wood is green,
what will happen when it is dry?” -Luke. 23:28-31

Here is a call to repentance, true repentance, and sorrow at the reality of the evil that has been committed. Jesus says to the daughters of Jerusalem who are weeping at the sight of him: “Do not weep for me, but weep for yourselves and for your children” (Lk 23:28). One cannot merely scrape away at the surface of evil; one has to get down to its roots, its causes, the inner truth of conscience.

This is precisely what Jesus means to say as he carries his Cross: he always “knew what was in man” (cf. Jn 2:25) and he continues to know it. That is why he must always be for us the closest onlooker, the one who sees all our actions and is aware of all the verdicts which our consciences pass on them. Perhaps he even makes us understand that these verdicts have to be carefully thought out, reasonable and objective (for he says: “Do not weep”), while at the same time bound up with all that this reality contains: he warns us of this because he is the one who carries the Cross.

Lord, let me know how to live and walk in the truth.

Prayer , , , ,

1 comment

  1. I read (I think in George Weigel’s Witness to Hope) that the late Pope prayed the Stations every Friday during the year, and every day during Lent. Coolness.

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