Posted tagged ‘Fire’

Stations of the Cross: Sacred Heart Theme

March 16, 2012

This is what came as I prayed the Stations of the Cross
for my dying grandmother during Eucharistic Adoration
in the chapel of the school where my prince teaches:

1st Station: Jesus is condemned to death
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world
(at this point in each Station, I kiss the ground,
as I would if I were in Jerusalem, walking the Via Dolorosa–
which is what the Stations are meant to represent)

“Ecce homo”
“Behold the man”
My Lord, Virgin-born,
the only Man not deserving of condemnation,
I see in You a mirror of what I am–
ripped open by sin,
crowned by my own pride,
condemned with none to take my part–
save You.
Save only You.
Sacred Heart enkindled with love for me…

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

2nd Station: Jesus takes up His Cross
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

You only had thorns.
Now there’s a log on the fire.
How it blazes!

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

3rd Station: Jesus falls the first time
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

As logs burn
they fall in great showers of sparks.
Love blazes on

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

4th Station: Jesus meets His mother
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

Sacred Heart, Immaculate Heart, Hearts afire-
how the flames mingle and rise higher!

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

5th Station: Simon of Cyrene is forced to help Jesus carry the Cross
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

Wet wood.
It needs to be dried out before it can catch–but it will…
It cannot stay that close to the fire
without being transformed, however reluctantly.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

6th Station: Veronica wipes the Face of Jesus
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

The smallest response to Love fans the flames,
leaves its mark.
Love finds relief in loving,
even more than in the service received.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

7th Station: Jesus falls a second time
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

As the flames rise, the fuel falls.
It is meant to be consumed.
Se are we–
until all is fire.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

8th Station: Jesus meets the weeping women of Jerusalem
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

If this is the way it is when the wood is green,
what will it be when it’s dry?
If this is the fate of good,
what will be the fate of evil?
Weep not for those who suffer only in this life,
but for those headed for eternal suffering in the next!
Let love ignite your heart now
that you may escape the eternal flames!

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

9th Station: Jesus falls a third time
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

In the end, the fire dies to embers.
That’s where the heat resides,
the heart of the fire,
which can do the most good.
Glowing, living, radiant, constant, steady.
The fuel completely transformed into fire.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

10th Station: Jesus is stripped of His garments
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

Up to this point the fire’s been enclosed, contained.
The covering is removed.
The whole world exposed to it–to catch fire!
The Blessed Virgin Mary is fanning the flames as they catch!

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

11th Station: Jesus is crucified
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

Lifted high-
a burning torch of Love to light the way,
light up the world.

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

12th Station: Jesus dies on the Cross
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

It looks as though the flame has been snuffed.
We didn’t count on trick birthday cake candles!
This fire only appears to go out.
Yet this is true death, not a trick.
The fire passes into the Father’s hands,
descends to Hades
to burst the prison bars and set the captives free

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

13th Station: Jesus is taken down from the Cross
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

Remember, man, that you are dust
and to dust you shall return (see Genesis 3:19)
Ashes to ashes and dust to dust.
Cool enough to handle.
We mourn the loss of the light.
The Immaculate Heart burns on in sorrow…
Blood and water gush forth
from this once-burning Heart
to quench the fires of hell, lust, temptation, anger, greed (etc.)

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

14th Station: Jesus is laid in the tomb
We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You,
because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world

Love goes underground,
like the sacred fire hidden by Jeremiah at the time of the exile
(see 2 Maccabees 1:18-35).
The grain of wheat has died, has fallen to the ground,
has been planted.
The earth cannot contain it for long.
It will have a time of dormancy,
but very soon, germination and reproduction.
From a single grain come many grains,
which in turn will fall and die and multiply.
(and ash makes the earth fruitful!)

Our Father…
Hail Mary…
Lord Jesus crucified, have mercy on us.

O Sacred Heart of Jesus,
make my heart like unto Thine!
Let us come back from that sacred table
like lions breathing out fire!

Let us, then, come back from that table [the Eucharist]
like lions breathing out fire,
thus becoming terrifying to the Devil,
and remaining mindful of our Head
and of the love he has shown for us. . .
This Blood, when worthily received,
drives away demons and puts them at a distance from us,
and even summons to us angels and the Lord of angels. . .
This Blood, poured out in abundance,
has washed the whole world clean. . .
This is the price of the world;
by it Christ purchased the Church…
This thought will check in us unruly passions.
How long, in truth,
shall we be attached to present things?
How long shall we remain asleep?
How long shall we not take thought
for our own salvation?
Let us remember what privileges God has bestowed on us,
let us give thanks, let us glorify him,
not only by faith, but also by our very works.
-St. John Chrysostom, Homily 46,
Commentary on Saint John the Apostle and Evangelist

On Fire

May 21, 2010

The other day a friend was lamenting students who chatter through Mass, carelessly take God’s Name in vain, show no awareness of Jesus in Adoration, etc. They just don’t care. I spend most Fridays in a school chapel. I know the phenomenon. Despite a solid religion program and a series of amazing chaplains, spiritual things just seem to bounce off of most of them. I keep praying…

We were talking about the Holy Spirit too, in the midst of the Pentecost novena. She’d been reading about Him and was trying to make sense of it all. I’d just given the RCIA presentation on the Holy Spirit and was trying to pass on highlights, describing (among other things) the Holy Spirit as the vitality of the Christian life, and explaining that her spiritual hunger and excitement were evidence of the Holy Spirit’s activity in her life.

Then it dawned on me–that’s precisely what these students (and Catholics beyond numbering) are missing. Without the Holy Spirit, religion becomes an empty, meaningless structure, like an abandoned house that gradually decays. With the Holy Spirit, it becomes the dynamo that changed the world! That’s what we need…

Suddenly the novena took on a whole new urgency.

Come, O Holy Spirit, fill the hearts and minds of Your faithful (and not so faithful!) servants and inflame them with the fire of Your divine Love. O God, You instructed the hearts of Your faithful servants through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. By this same Spirit, enable us to discern what is right and to rejoice in His consolation forever, through Christ, our Lord. Amen.”


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