- IT -
THE PASSION OF THE LORD
THE WAY OF THE CROSS
ROME, 7 APRIL 2023
STATIONS OF THE CROSS 2023
“Voices of Peace in a World at War”
Lord Jesus, you are “our peace” (Eph 2:14).
Before your Passion, you said: “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you;
not as the world gives do I give to you” (Jn 14:27). Lord, we need your
peace, the peace we are unable to build with our own strength. We need to hear
again the words with which, after your resurrection, you strengthened the hearts
of the disciples three times: “Peace be with you” (Jn 20:19.21.26).
Jesus, who embraced the cross for us, look upon our wold, thirsting for peace
while the blood of your brothers and sisters continues to be shed and the tears
of so many mothers who have lost children in war mingle with those of your holy
Mother. You also, Lord, wept over Jerusalem for it had not recognized the way
of peace (cf. Lk 19:42).
Tonight, the way of the cross winds its path behind you, directly from the Holy
Land. We will walk it, listening to your suffering reflected in that of our
brothers and sisters who have suffered and still suffer from the lack of peace
in the world, allowing ourselves to be pierced by the testimonies and
reflections that reached the ears and heart also of the Pope during his visits.
They are echoes of peace that resurface in this “third world war being fought
piecemeal”, cries that come from countries and areas torn apart today by
violence, injustice and poverty. All the places where conflict, hatred and
persecution are endured are present in the prayer of this Good Friday.
Lord Jesus, at your birth the angels in heaven announced: “On earth, peace among
those whom he favours” (Lk 2:14). Now our prayers rise up to heaven to
appeal for “Peace on earth,which humanity throughout the ages has so longed for”
(Pacem in Terris, 1). Let us pray, beseeching the peace that you have
left us and that we are unable to keep. Jesus, you embrace the whole world from
the cross: forgive our failings, heal our hearts, grant us your peace.
Jesus is condemned to death
(Voices of peace from the Holy Land)
Then [Pilate] released for them Barabbas, and having scourged Jesus, delivered
him to be crucified (Mt 27:26).
Barabbas or Jesus? They must choose. This is not like any other choice: it
involves deciding where to stand, what position to take in the complex events of
life. Peace, which we all desire, is not born of itself; instead, it awaits our
decision. Then, as now, we are continually called to choose between Barabbas or
Jesus: rebellion or meekness, weapons or witness, human power or the silent
strength of the small seed, the power of the world or that of the Spirit. In
the Holy Land, it seems that our choice always falls on Barabbas. Violence
seems to be our only language. The engine of reciprocal retaliation is
continuously fueled by a person’s own pain, which frequently becomes the only
criterion for judgement. Justice and forgiveness cannot talk to each other. We
live together, without recognizing one another, rejecting each other’s
existence, condemning each other, in an endless and increasingly violent vicious
circle. In this context, full of hatred and resentment, we too are called to
express a judgment and make our decision. And we cannot do this without gazing
at the one who was silent and condemned to death: a failure, yet the one on whom
our choice has fallen, Jesus. Christ invites us not to use the standard of
Pilate and of the crowd, but to recognize the suffering of others, to place
justice and forgiveness in dialogue and to desire salvation for everyone, even
for thieves, even for Barabbas.
Let us pray together, saying: Enlighten us, Lord Jesus!
When we believe we are always right: Enlighten us, Lord Jesus!
When we condemn our brothers and sisters without appeal: Enlighten us, Lord
When we close our eyes to injustice: Enlighten us, Lord Jesus!
When we stifle the good around us: Enlighten us, Lord Jesus!
Jesus takes up his Cross
(Voices of peace from a migrant from West Africa)
He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and
live for righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed (1 Pet 2:24).
My way of the Cross began six years ago, when I left my city. After a thirteen
day journey, we arrived at the desert and passed through it for eight days,
coming across burnt out cars, empty water cans and dead bodies, until we reached
Libya. Those who still had to pay the smugglers for the crossing were locked up
and tortured until they paid. Some lost their lives, others their minds. They
promised to put me on a ship for Europe, but the trips were canceled and we did
not get our money back. There was war there and we reached the point where we
stopped paying attention to violence and stray bullets. I found work as a
plasterer in order to pay for the crossing. Eventually I boarded a raft with
more than a hundred people. We sailed for hours before an Italian ship saved
us. I was full of joy and we knelt down to thank God. Then we discovered that
the ship was returning to Libya. There, we were confined in a detention centre,
the worst place in the world. Ten months later, I was again on a boat. The
first night there were high waves, four people fell into the sea and we managed
to save two of them. I fell asleep hoping to die. When I woke up, I saw people
smiling next to me. Some Tunisian fishermen called for help, the ship docked
and NGOs gave us food, clothing and shelter. I worked to pay for another
crossing. This was the sixth time; after three days at sea, I reached Malta. I
stayed in a centre for six months and there I lost my mind. Every night I asked
God why: why should people like ourselves consider us enemies? Many people who
are fleeing from war are carrying crosses like mine.
Let us pray together, saying: Deliver us, Lord Jesus!
From the easy condemnation of our neighbour: Deliver us, Lord Jesus!
From hasty judgments: Deliver us, Lord Jesus!
From criticism and useless words: Deliver us, Lord Jesus!
From destructive gossip: Deliver us, Lord Jesus!
Jesus falls for the first time
(Voices of peace from young people from Central America)
Surely he has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed him
stricken, struck down by God, and afflicted. But he was wounded for our
transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities (Is 53:4-5).
We young people want peace. Yet we frequently fall and the fall has many names:
we are knocked down by laziness, fear, discouragement, and also the empty
promises of an easy but dishonest life made up of greed and corruption. This
increases the cycle of drug trafficking, violence, addictions and the
exploitation of people, while too many families continue to mourn the loss of
their children, and the lack of accountability on the part of those who deceive,
kidnap and kill has no end. How can we achieve peace? Jesus, you fell under
the cross, but then you got up, took up the cross again and with it gave us
peace. You push us to take charge of our lives, you push us to the courage of
commitment, which in our language is called compromiso. This
means saying no to many compromisos, to false compromises that
kill peace. We are full of these compromises: we do not want violence, but we
attack those who do not think like us on social media; we want a united society,
but we do not make the effort to understand those who are next to us; worse, we
neglect those who need us. Lord, place in our hearts the desire to raise up
someone who has fallen to the ground. As you do with us.
Let us pray together, saying: Raise us up, Lord Jesus!
From our laziness: Raise us up, Lord Jesus!
From our falls: Raise us up, Lord Jesus!
From our sadness: Raise us up, Lord Jesus!
From thinking that helping others is not up to us: Raise us up, Lord Jesus!
Jesus meets his Mother
(Voices of peace from a South American mother)
Simeon blessed them and said to Mary his mother, “Behold, this child is set for
the fall and rising of many in Israel, and for a sign that is spoken against –
and a sword will pierce through your own soul also – that the thoughts of many
hearts may be revealed” (Lk 2:34-35).
In 2012, the explosion of a bomb planted by the guerrillas severely damaged my
leg. The shrapnel caused dozens of wounds to my body. Of that moment, I
remember people’s screams and blood everywhere. Yet what terrified me the most
was seeing my seven-month old baby, covered in blood, with many pieces of glass
stuck in her face. What it must have been like for Mary to see Jesus’ face
bruised and bloodied! At first, I, a victim of that senseless violence, felt
anger and resentment, but then I discovered that if I spread hatred, I created
even more violence. I realized that within and around me there were wounds
deeper than those of the body. I understood that many victims needed to
discover, like me and through me, that it was not over for them either and that
we cannot live with resentment. So I began to help them: I studied in order to
teach them how to prevent accidents due to the millions of mines scattered in
our land. I thank Jesus and his Mother for having discovered that drying other
people’s tears is not a waste of time, but the best medicine for healing
Let us pray together, saying: Grant that we may recognize you, Lord Jesus!
In the disfigured faces of those who suffer: Grant that we may recognize you,
In those who are small and poor: Grant that we may recognize you, Lord Jesus!
In those who cry out for an act of love: Grant that we may recognize you,
In those persecuted for the sake of justice: Grant that we may recognize you,
Simon of Cyrene helps Jesus carry his cross
(Voices of peace from three migrants from Africa, South Asia and the Middle
And as they led him away, they seized one Simon of Cyrene, who was coming in
from the country, and laid on him the cross, to carry it behind Jesus (Lk 23:26).
 I am someone wounded by hatred. Once you experience hatred, you do not
forget it, it changes you. Hatred takes on terrible forms. It leads a human
being to use a pistol not only to shoot others, but also to break their bones
while other people look on. There is a void of love inside me that makes me
feel like a useless weight. Who will be a Cyrenian for me?  I live my life
on the road: I escaped from bombs, knives, hunger and pain. I have been pushed
onto a truck, hidden in trunks, thrown onto unsafe boats. Yet my journey
continued in order to reach a place of safety, one that offers freedom and
opportunity, where I can give and receive love, practice my faith and where hope
is real. Who will be a Cyrenian for me?  Frequently, I am asked: Who are
you? Why are you here? What is your status? Do you expect to stay? Where
will you go? These are not questions that are intended to hurt, but they do
hurt. They reduce my hopes to a check on the boxes of a form. I must choose
foreigner, victim, asylum seeker, refugee, migrant or other. Yet what I want to
write is person, brother, friend, believer, neighbour. Who will be a Cyrenian
Let us pray together, saying: Forgive us, Lord Jesus!
When we disdained you in the unfortunate: Forgive us, Lord Jesus!
When we ignored you in those who need help: Forgive us, Lord Jesus!
When we abandoned you in the defenceless: Forgive us, Lord Jesus!
When we did not serve you in those who suffer: Forgive us, Lord Jesus!
Veronica wipes the face of Jesus
(Voices of peace from a religious priest from the Balkan Peninsula)
Come, O blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the
foundation of the world; for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty
and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you
clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me
I was a forty year old pastor when the war came: some armed guards entered the
parish house and took me to a camp where I spent four months. They were
terrible: lacking the minimum conditions of hygiene, we suffered from hunger and
thirst without being able to wash or shave. We were physically mistreated,
beaten and tortured with various objects. They brought me outside, even five
times a day, above all at night, calling me “Pastor” and striking me. Among
other things, they broke three ribs and threatened to pull out my fingernails,
put salt in my wounds, and skin me alive. Once it was so hard to resist that I
begged the guard to kill me, convinced as I was that they would do it anyway.
The guard answered me: “You will not die so easily; for you we will get one
hundred fifty of our men in return”. Those words reawakened in me the hope of
surviving. Yet I would not have been able to bear all that evil by myself,
without God: prayer, repeated in the heart, worked wonders. And Providence
came, in the form of aid and food, through a Muslim woman, Fatima, who managed
to reach me, making her way through the hatred. She was for me what Veronica
was for Jesus. Now, until the end of my days, I bear witness to the horrors of
war and cry out: Never again war!
Let us pray together, saying: Grant us your gaze, Lord Jesus!
That we may love those who are unloved: Grant us your gaze, Lord Jesus!
That we may help those who have lost their way: Grant us your gaze, Lord
That we may take care of those who suffer violence: Grant us your gaze, Lord
That we may welcome those who repent of evil: Grant us your gaze, Lord Jesus!
Jesus falls for the second time
(Voices of peace from two teenagers from North Africa)
“Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink?
And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you?
And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?” And the king will
answer them, “Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my
brethren, you did it to me” (Mt 25:37-40).
 I am Joseph, and I am sixteen. I arrived at the camp for internally
displaced persons with my parents in 2015 and have been living there for more
than eight years. If there had been peace, I would have stayed in my home where
I was born and enjoyed my childhood. Here life is not good. I am afraid of the
future, for myself and for the other young people. Why are we suffering in the
camp for internally displaced persons? Because of the ongoing conflicts in my
country, which has been plagued by war for as long as it has existed. Without
peace, we will not be able to get up again. Peace is always promised, but we
continue to fall under the weight of war, our cross. I thank God who raises us
up like a father, and so many generous men and women whom I perhaps will never
know and who, by helping us, allow us to survive.  I am Johnson and since
2014 I have been living in another camp for internally displaced persons in
Block B, Section Two. I am fourteen, and I am in the third grade. Here life is
not good; many children do not go to school because there are not enough
teachers and schools for everyone. The place is too small and crowded, there is
not even room to play football. We want peace so that we can go back home.
Peace is good, war is bad. I would like to say this to the world’s leaders.
And I ask all my friends to pray for peace.
Let us pray together, saying: Make us strong, Lord Jesus!
In time of trial: Make us strong, Lord Jesus!
In the effort to build bridges of fraternity: Make us strong, Lord Jesus!
In carrying our cross: Make us strong, Lord Jesus!
In bearing witness to the Gospel: Make us strong, Lord Jesus!
Jesus meets the women of Jerusalem
(Voices of peace from Southeast Asia)
And there followed him a great multitude of the people, and of women who
bewailed and lamented him (Lk 23:27).
Jesus, you carried your cross. And I think that my country is also carrying its
cross. We are a people that loves peace, yet we are crushed by the cross of
conflict: by violence, internal displacements, attacks on places of worship… It
is a heavy burden that we are dragging, Jesus: a way of the cross that seems
endless. Our mothers shed tears and grieve over the hunger of their children.
And like them, I too do not have many words to pray with, but many tears to
offer. Lord, the procession that led you to Calvary was dreadful, but some
grieving women made their way through the crowd, which was degraded by evil. It
was they who gave you strength, mothers who saw in you not a condemned man, but
a son. From us, too, a woman came out of the crowd and became a mother in
spirit for many. She knelt down in defence of her people before the power of
the weapons that were lined up and, willing to give her life, meekly pleaded for
peace and reconciliation. Jesus, now as then, in the grisly turmoil of hate the
dance of peace arises. And we Christians want to be instruments of peace.
Convert us to you, Jesus, and give us strength, for you alone are our strength.
Let us pray together, saying: Convert us, Lord Jesus!
From trafficking in weapons without qualms of conscience: Convert us, Lord
From allocating money for armaments instead of for food: Convert us, Lord
From the slavery of money that gives rise to war and injustice: Convert us,
That spears may be turned into pruning hooks: Convert us, Lord Jesus!
Ninth Station: Jesus falls for the third time
(Voices of peace from a consecrated woman from Central Africa)
Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and
dies, it remains just a single grain; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.
Those who love their life lose it, and those who hate their life in this world
will keep it for eternal life (Jn 12:24-25).
On 5 December 2013, at five o’clock in the morning, I was awakened by the sound
of weapons. The rebels were invading the capital. Everyone ran and tried to
hide, yet all it took to die was to cross the path of a stray bullet. This was
the beginning of indescribable sufferings: killings, loss of family members,
friends and colleagues. My sister disappeared and never came back, which
traumatized my father. He left us a few years later following a short illness.
I continued to cry. In that valley of tears and of “why”… I thought of Jesus.
He also fell under the weight of violence, even to the point of saying on the
cross, “My God, why have you abandoned me?”. I joined my “why” to his and an
answer came to me: love as Jesus loves you. This was the light amid the
darkness. I understood that I had to draw upon the strength to love. Since
then, every time there is a little bit of peace, I go to Mass. To get to the
parish I have to take several roads and pass through at least three rebel
barricades. Yet, Mass after Mass, a certitude grew within me: despite having
lost practically everything, including the house where I grew up, everything
passes away except God. This lifted me up and with some friends we started
to gather some children, who were playing soldiers, to try to hand on to them,
who are the future, the Gospel values of mutual help, forgiveness and honesty,
so that the dream of peace can come true.
Let us pray together, saying: Heal us, Lord Jesus!
From the fear of being unloved: Heal us, Lord Jesus!
From the fear of being misunderstood: Heal us, Lord Jesus!
From the fear of being forgotten: Heal us, Lord Jesus!
From the fear of failure: Heal us, Lord Jesus!
Jesus is stripped of his clothes
(Voices of peace from young people from Ukraine and Russia)
[The soldiers] crucified him, and divided his garments among them, casting lots
for them, to decide what each should take. This was to fulfil the Scripture,
“They parted my garments among them, and for my clothing they cast lots” (Mk 15:24; Jn 19:24).
 Last year, my mother and father brought me and my youngest brother to Italy,
where our grandmother has worked for more than twenty years. We left Mariupol
at night. At the border, the soldiers stopped my father and told him that he
had to stay in Ukraine to fight. We continued on by bus for two more days.
When we arrived in Italy, I was sad. I felt stripped of everything: completely
bare. I did not know the language and had no friends. My grandmother tried
hard to make me feel fortunate but all I did was say I wanted to go home. In
the end my family decided to go back to Ukraine. Here the situation continues
to be hard: there is war on all sides, the city is destroyed. Yet in my heart
there remained that certitude which my grandmother used to tell me about when I
cried: “Everything will pass, you’ll see. And with the help of the good Lord,
peace will return”.  I, on the other hand, am from Russia… as I say it, I
almost feel a sense of guilt, yet at the same time I do not understand why and I
feel doubly bad. I feel stripped of happiness and of dreams for the future. I
have seen my grandmother and mother cry for two years. A letter informed us
that my oldest brother was dead; I still remember him on his eighteenth
birthday, smiling and bright like the sun, and all this just a few weeks before
leaving for a long journey. Everyone told us we should be proud, but at home
there was only much suffering and sadness. The same thing happened also to my
father and grandfather: they too left and we know nothing more. Some of my
classmates, with great fear, whispered in my ear that there was war. When I
returned home, I wrote a prayer: Jesus, please, let there be peace in the whole
world and let us all be brothers and sisters.
Let us pray together, saying: Purify us, Lord Jesus!
From resentment and bitterness: Purify us, Lord Jesus!
From violent words and reactions: Purify us, Lord Jesus!
From attitudes that create division: Purify us, Lord Jesus!
From seeking to look good by humiliating others: Purify us, Lord Jesus!
Jesus is nailed to the cross
(Voices of peace from a young person from the Near East)
And with him they crucified two robbers, one on his right and one on his left.
And those who passed by derided him, shaking their heads, and saying, “Aha! You
who would destroy the temple and build it in three days, save yourself and come
down from the cross!” (Mk 15:27-30).
In 2012, a group of armed extremists invaded our neighbourhood and started
killing those who were on balconies and inside apartment buildings with bursts
of machine gun fire. I was nine years old. I remember the anguish of my mother
and father; in the evening we found ourselves embracing and praying, aware of
the harsh new reality ahead of us. Every day the war became more atrocious.
For long periods there was no light and water, and wells were dug everywhere.
Food was a daily problem. In 2014, while we were on the balcony, a bomb
exploded in front of the house, hurling us inside and covering us with glass and
splinters. A few months later another bomb hit my parents’ room. They
miraculously survived and reluctantly decided to leave the country. Another
“calvary” began because, after two attempts to obtain a visa, we had no choice
but to board a ship. We risked our lives, we stayed on a rock waiting for dawn
and a coast guard vessel. Once we were saved, the locals welcomed us with open
arms, understanding our hardships. The war was the cross of our lives. War
kills hope. In our country, many families, children and the elderly are without
hope, even more so after terrible natural disasters. In the name of Jesus, who
opened his arms on the cross, stretch out a hand to my people!
Let us pray together, saying: Heal us, Lord Jesus!
From the inability to dialogue: Heal us, Lord Jesus!
From distrust and suspicion: Heal us, Lord Jesus!
From impatience and haste: Heal us, Lord Jesus!
From being closed in on ourselves and from isolation: Heal us, Lord Jesus!
Jesus dies forgiving those who crucified him
(Voices of peace from a mother from West Asia)
And Jesus said, “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do”. It was
now about the sixth hour, and there was darkness over the whole land until the
ninth hour, while the sun’s light failed; and the curtain of the temple was torn
in two. Then Jesus, crying out with a loud voice, said, “Father, into your
hands I commit my spirit!” And having said this he breathed his last (Lk 23:34.44-46).
On 6 August 2014, the city was awakened by bombs. Terrorists were at the
gates. Three weeks earlier, they had invaded the nearby cities and villages,
treating them cruelly. So we fled, but after a few days we returned home. One
morning, while we were busy and the children were playing in front of the
houses, we heard the sound of a mortar shell. I ran outside. The children’s
voices were no longer heard, but the screams of the adults increased. My son,
his cousin and the young neighbor who was preparing to marry had been struck:
they were dead. The killing of these three angels drove us to flee: if this had
not happened to them, we would have stayed in the city and would have inevitably
fallen into the hands of the terrorists. It is not easy to accept this
situation. Nonetheless, faith helps me to hope, for it reminds me that the dead
are in the arms of Jesus. And we survivors try to forgive the aggressor because
Jesus forgave his executioners. So in our dead, we believe in you, the Lord of
life. We want to follow you and bear witness that your love is stronger than
Let us pray together, saying: Teach us, Lord Jesus!
To love as you loved us: Teach us, Lord Jesus!
To forgive as you forgave us: Teach us, Lord Jesus!
To take the first step towards reconciliation: Teach us, Lord Jesus!
To do good without demanding recompense: Teach us, Lord Jesus!
Jesus is taken down from the cross
(Voices of peace from a Sister from East Africa)
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress,
or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?... No, through all
these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us (Rom 8:35.37).
It was 7 September 2022, the day when, in our country, we remember the Agreement
by which our people’s right to full independence was finally recognized.
Suddenly something happened that shattered our joy: a Sister, who had been a
long-time missionary in our lands, was killed. Terrorists entered the house and
without mercy took her life. The day of victory turned into defeat: fear and
uncertainty flooded our hearts. The experience of hundreds of families who
witnessed the tragic death of their loved ones became reality: in our arms lay
the lifeless body of our Sister. It is not easy to witness the violent death of
a family member, a friend or a neighbour, just as it is not easy to see one’s
own home and possessions reduced to ashes and the future become dark. Yet this
is the life of my people, it is my life. However, as we have heard and as we
learn at the school of the Virgin of Nazareth, who received the lifeless Jesus
into her arms and gazed upon him with love illuminated by faith, we must never
stop finding the courage to dream of a future of hope, peace and
reconciliation. For the love of the Risen Christ has been poured into our
hearts; for he is our peace, he is our true victory. And nothing will ever
separate us from his love.
Let us pray together, saying: Have mercy on us, Lord Jesus!
Good Shepherd, who gave your life for your flock: Have mercy on us, Lord
You, who by dying destroyed death: Have mercy on us, Lord Jesus!
You, who made life pour forth from your pierced heart: Have mercy on us, Lord
You, who from the tomb shed light on history: Have mercy on us, Lord Jesus!
Jesus is placed in the tomb
(Voices of peace from young girls from Southern Africa)
After this Joseph of Arimathea… asked Pilate that he might take away the body of
Jesus, and Pilate gave him leave. So he came and took away his body. Nicodemus
also… came bringing a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about a hundred pounds’
weight. They took the body of Jesus, and bound it in linen cloths with the
spices (Jn 19:38-40).
It was a Friday evening when the rebels raided our village. They took as many
hostages as they could, deported whoever they found and loaded us down with what
they had looted. On the way, they killed many men with bullets or knives. They
took the women to a park. Every day we were mistreated in body and soul.
Stripped of clothes and dignity, we lived naked so that we could not escape.
Thankfully one day, when they sent us to get water from the river, I managed to
get away. Our province is still today a place of tears and pain. When the Pope
came to our continent, we placed under the cross of Jesus the clothes of the
armed men, who still frighten us. In the name of Jesus we forgive them for all
that they did to us. We ask the Lord for the grace of a peaceful and human
coexistence. We know and believe that the tomb is not the final resting place,
but that we are all called to a new life in the heavenly Jerusalem.
Let us pray together, saying: Preserve us, Lord Jesus!
In the hope that does not disappoint: Preserve us, Lord Jesus!
In the light that does not go out: Preserve us, Lord Jesus!
In the forgiveness that renews the heart: Preserve us, Lord Jesus!
In the peace that makes us blessed: Preserve us, Lord Jesus!
Concluding Prayer (Fourteen “thank yous”)
Lord Jesus, eternal Word of the Father, you became silent for us. And in the
silence that leads us to your tomb, there is still a word that we want to say to
you, recalling the journey of the Stations of the Cross we have traveled with
you: thank you!
Thank you, Lord Jesus, for the meekness that overwhelms arrogance.
Thank you, for the courage with which you embraced the cross.
Thank you, for the peace that flows from your wounds.
Thank you, for having given us your holy Mother to be our Mother as well.
Thank you, for the love shown in the face of betrayal.
Thank you, for turning tears into smiles.
Thank you, for having loved everyone without excluding anyone.
Thank you, for the hope you instill in time of trial.
Thank you, for the mercy that heals sufferings.
Thank you, for stripping yourself of everything to enrich us.
Thank you, for having transformed the cross into the tree of life.
Thank you, for the forgiveness you offered your executioners.
Thank you, for having defeated death.
Thank you, Lord Jesus, for the light you kindled in our nights. In reconciling
all divisions, you made us all brothers and sisters, children of the same Father
who is in heaven: