Are you looking for a way to transform your Lent this year? Perhaps, it is time to rediscover a traditional, Lenten devotional: the Stations of the Cross. Dr. Sri describes his experience with the Stations of the Cross, their meaning, and 5 different ways to pray them.
Snippet from the Show
This Lent, create space in your heart so that you can encounter Jesus Christ.
Resources for Lent from Dr. Sri
- The Pocket Guide to the Stations of the Cross invites Catholics to discover the depths of Christ’s love shown to us by his passion and death. In this beautiful book, readers will find a guide to accompany them and help them meditate on Christ’s Passion.
- No Greater Love is a biblical pilgrimage that reveals Christ’s amazing love for us. Dr. Sri guides you through the last hours of Christ’s life, from the garden of Gethsemane to Mount Calvary. Experience a deeper understanding and appreciation of God’s immeasurable and unconditional love for you—grow closer to Jesus than you ever have before.
Events with Dr. Sri
- Feb 24: St. Francis of Assisi Family Ministry, Castle Rock CO
- Feb 26: Faith & Love Conference – St. Catherine of Siena, Kennesaw GA
- Mar 11-12: Green Bay Women’s Conference, Green Bay WI
- Mar 15-16: St. Martha’s Church Parish Mission – Depew NY
- Mar 16: St. Mary’s Swormville, East Amherst NY
- Mar 23-25: St. Michael the Archangel Parish Lenten Mission, St. Michael MN
Transform Your Lent
The Stations of the Cross are a Lenten devotional that can transform your Lent. During the 40 days of Lent, the Church encourages her followers to focus especially on the Gospels, and within the Gospels, the Passion narratives. The Passion narratives are the suffering and death of Christ. However, there is another way to understand the Passion. Pope Benedict XVI considers the word “passion” in its more modern sense. He says, “God is a lover with all the passion of a true love.”
Stations of the Cross Can Be Intimidating
There are a number of different elements that can make the Stations of the Cross appear intimidating. First, the traditional devotion can seem a bit lengthy. It can seem like quite the time commitment in order to pray them. Another element that can make them intimidating is the complexity of the devotion. When do you stand? When do you kneel? And finally, if you are praying the Stations at your parish, the time may be inconvenient or the distance is a little too far to travel.
Meaning of the Stations of the Cross
The Tradition Began Early in Christianity
Very early in Christianity, Christians were already gathering at Christ’s tomb to pray. By 313 AD, in the time of Constantine, pilgrims were beginning to travel to the Holy Land to retrace the steps of Christ. When we pray the Stations of the Cross, we are united with these people. In the 1500s/1600s, Stations of the Cross began to be placed in churches. In 1731, Pope Clement XII solidified the fourteen Stations of the Cross.
Stations of the Cross Are Doorways into Christ’s Heart
Through the Stations of the Cross, Christ wants us to enter into his Passion. The Stations of the Cross are not just something for us to view but instead we are called to enter into it. Christ wants us to participate in his Passion. There are ways that even our own sufferings can help us enter into Christ’s suffering. We’re called to love like Jesus, so we need to encounter that love.
Why Are They Called Stations?
The meaning of the word statio in Latin is “a place to stop or rest on a journey.” When praying the Stations of the Cross, it is important to pause and meditate on them. We are given the Stations of the Cross in small doses so that we can truly take time to contemplate them and enter into them.
Stations of the Cross Are a Physical, Mental, and Spiritual Devotional
This devotional requires physical movement. You stand and sit, genuflect, and in some cases, even walk from station to station. It also requires you to mentally think of each station and what happened in that station. Finally, it is spiritual because you can unite your suffering with Christ’s.
5 Ways to Pray the Stations of the Cross
- Traditional – Pray at your parish with your parish community.
- On Your Own – You can pray the Stations of the Cross on your own at your parish. You can use a little booklet, find something online, or do brief personal reflections.
- Pray At Home – Create a prayerful space and pray them at home. You could create stations using candles and images of the stations. Go through each station as you move around your house from station to station. You can also simply pray in a quiet place in your home.
- Incorporate Into Everyday Life – You can pray the Stations of the Cross while driving, flying, exercising, walking, etc. Whether it is with a booklet or a personal reflection, you can pray the Stations of the Cross every day!
- Quick Stations – Announce the Station; pray a Hail Mary; and briefly reflect on the station as you pray.
- Visit Dr. Sri’s website at www.edwardsri.com and to book online events with Dr. Sri email firstname.lastname@example.org
- Find more of Dr. Sri’s episodes at www.ascensionpress.com/allthingscatholic
- Ascension is pleased to offer our new and improved online bible study programs and sacramental preparation programs digitally to help you minister with flexibility. Go to www.ascensionpress.com to view all our offerings
Dr. Edward Sri is a theologian, well-known Catholic speaker, and author of several best-selling books. His work with Ascension includes study programs such as A Biblical Walk Through the Mass, No Greater Love: A Biblical Walk Through Christ’s Passion and Mary: A Biblical Walk with the Blessed Mother. Several of Dr. Sri’s programs were filmed on-site in the Holy Land, and feature immersive video explorations of the sacred sites where Jesus, Mary, and the Apostles lived and died.
Dr. Sri is the host of the acclaimed Ascension podcast All Things Catholic with Dr. Edward Sri. Together with Curtis Martin, Dr. Sri is a founding leader of the Fellowship of Catholic University Students (FOCUS), of which he serves as senior vice president of Apostolic Outreach.
Dr. Sri lives with his wife Beth and their children in Colorado.