Random and not so random musings from a 5th generation NE Missourian who became a 1st generation Episcopalian. Let the good times roll!

("Jesus Dies on the Cross," from a set of Stations of the Cross painted by David O'Connell)

The Fifth Sorrow--Jesus Dies on the Cross

In the passion of my Maker,
be my sinful soul partaker,
may I bear with her my part;
of his passion bear the token,
in a spirit bowed and broken
bear his death within my heart.

Certainly the biggest heartbreak of all for Mary was the prolonged agony she had to witness as Jesus died.  Crucifixion is a long, slow, painful form of death.  It can take hours or days before hypovolemic shock, sepsis, or dehydration sets in.  It was a death so horrible that it was usually not used in executing Roman citizens.  To see her son humiliated in this way must have been emotional torture.

Each day, mothers all over the world watch their children die slowly of diseases such as malaria, malnutrition, and HIV.  They see their children die from war, genocide, and land mines.  They see their children tortured in front of their very eyes during interrogations and imprisonment. They watch the slow spiral of their children falling victim to addictions.  Mary's grief at Jesus' death is repeated every day worldwide because of disease, famine, addiction, and political unrest. 

Let us pray. (silence)

Faithful God, just as the Blessed Virgin Mary steadfastly remained at the feet of Jesus till the end, you abide with us through our tribulations and sorrows.  Some of the greatest sorrows in our lives are not our own afflictions, but the wounds that are borne by those we love, and all we can do is watch helplessly.  Reveal your presence to us to the dying as well as to us, as we keep vigil.  Open our eyes to the plight of those dying from conditions or situations we cannot even imagine.  We pray these things in the name of the One who had to suffer and die before he could be raised again in glory. Amen.



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Kirksville, Missouri, United States
I'm a longtime area resident of that quirky and wonderful place called Kirksville, MO and am wondering what God has hiding round the next corner in my life.

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