Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Eucharistic Way of the Cross: Third Station

Jesus Falls the First Time

Under the weight of the cross Jesus falls to the ground. Certainly there must have been crowds gathered who jeered and taunted Him as He struggled with His burden. They were there to ridicule a condemned man, but He died for them as well.

At Mass:

The Priest begins: “The Lord be with you.”

We reply, “And also with you.”

“Lift up your hearts.”

“We lift them up to the Lord.” “Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.” “It is right to give him thanks and praise.”

Indeed it is right to give the Lord thanks and praise, when he suffered such humiliation and pain on our behalf. Like the crowd gathered there that day, we do not deserve His gift of grace.

During this part of the Eucharistic Prayer we remain standing, while at this Station Jesus has fallen to His knees. We are among the crowd gathered around Him standing over Him as He suffers. We must “lift up our hearts” so that we might lift up Jesus from the ground and help Him on His way. We must not be counted among those who scoffed and ridiculed. We must take seriously the words we speak at Mass and lift Jesus up in prayer.

[For an explanation of this series of meditations on the Way of the Cross see this Introduction.]

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