Christ Falling under the Cross,
Sculpture by Alessandro Algardi, Italian (1598–1654),
Sculpted circa 1650,
©Yale University Art Gallery
The Stations of the Cross - Station 7: Jesus falls the second time
Jesus said, "Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do".
And they cast lots to divide his garments.
Reflection on the Bronze Sculpture
We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you
Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.
My Jesus, you fall for a second time. I can see only you in this sculpture: no distraction of crowds, screaming or general chaos on the streets of Jerusalem. It is just you there, isolated, alone… exactly how you must have been feeling: alone. Your dark hours remind me there are some roads that I too must walk alone.
You stumbled along that cobblestone road, your left hand trying to find support. That stone you are holding on to seems the only bit of support you are getting… such was your sense of abandonment and isolation. But for me it is different: whenever I find myself in a lonely place, I know that you are there! I mustn’t feel lonely, as you are there right beside me every step of the way.
Soon you will be on that cross, alone, shouting words of utter abandonment “Eloi, Eloi, Lama sabachthani” or “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” Beaten, crowned with thorns, bleeding beyond recognition… YOU were Alone… Not I, for you are with me…
Our Father, who art in heaven…
Hail Mary, full of grace…
Glory be to the Father and to the Son…
Normal Gospel reading for the day: John 10: 31-42:
The Jews took up stones again to stone him. Jesus replied, "I have shown you many good works from the Father. For which of these are you going to stone me?" The Jews answered, "It is not for a good work that we are going to stone you, but for blasphemy, because you, though only a human being, are making yourself God." Jesus answered, "Is it not written in your law, 'I said, you are gods'? If those to whom the word of God came were called 'gods' - and the scripture cannot be annulled - can you say that the one whom the Father has sanctified and sent into the world is blaspheming because I said, 'I am God's Son'? If I am not doing the works of my Father, then do not believe me. But if I do them, even though you do not believe me, believe the works, so that you may know and understand that the Father is in me and I am in the Father." Then they tried to arrest him again, but he escaped from their hands. He went away again across the Jordan to the place where John had been baptizing earlier, and he remained there. Many came to him, and they were saying, "John performed no sign, but everything that John said about this man was true." And many believed in him there.
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