Welcome to the Way of the Cross here at twelvefruits.com. The pages here are based on a version that Adam wrote in April 2005, on the request of the Hyde Park Vineyard Church. Yes, Adam's still Catholic; it was the reflective part of an all night prayer vigil. There is a page and picture for each of the fifteen stops, the traditional fourteen plus the implementation of Vatican II, the Resurrection. Not all scripts include the Resurrection. This one does, because it completes the journey, and without it the other 14 are meaningless. Each station includes the standard opening, an appropriate passage from the Bible, the text of the traditional prayers - Our Father and Hail Mary and Glory Be - and a closing prayer. The time needed to complete the stations varies. You could rush, taking only a minute or two at each stop to read the passage and say the prayers. Alternatively, you could spend several minutes pondering the passage and the implications therein.
These stations are very Scripture and Passion based, unlike many scripts, and concentrate on the path to Calvary, and watching Christ. The opening and stations 1 to 3 set us on the road. Stations 4 through 9 look at Christ through different eyes, as the prayer for number 9 explicitly states: mother, stranger, comforter, sufferer, and mourner. The suffering of Christ is emphasized, through the use of Isaiah 53 in the three falls and through the prayers. Stations 10 through 15 get back to the trinity, concentrating again on the actions of death, waiting, and resurrection.
There is nothing fancy about the pages. There are no long meditations, and no viewpoints on how we should feel as we reach any point. Other online options (several others are listed below) do that sort of thing. This presentation is not simple; it's straightforward. It's relentless. It doesn't have distractions. Too often we can fall into overanalysis. Digression has its place, just not here.
Although formatted here for private computer viewing, this set of readings and prayers was really designed for public services. Unless one can actually go to Jerusalem, the best way to experience the Way of the Cross is through walking, as a true path. Available is a two page handout that introduces the Stations, which can be printed on one sheet of paper for carrying while walking. The amount of preparation for the public service is minimal. No musical instruments are necessary, as the song choices are simple. There are three marked parts: scripture reader, prayer leader, and cantor. For more information on the public service, the handout, and tips from the one live runthrough, click here.
Now, introduction complete, you can head to the opening prayer.
There is no prayer truly new under the sun, particularly the Via Dolorosa. So let's give out credits. The scripture readings are taken from the New Revised Standard Version. This translation is used by Catholics (the Canadians base their lectionary on it) and Protestants. Plus the permissions are acceptable: New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. The song in the public handout, Crucem Tuam, is copyrighted by Taize. To reproduce it, you'll need to have permission from GIA Music or another source.
The words of the prayer script are Adam's, but he drew inspiration from two major sources and other minor ones. The major helps were the pamphlet "The Way of the Cross", Barton-Cotton Inc., 1965, and Cardinal Newman's Long Meditations at catholic-forum.com. Several of the other online options were also read for inspiration. Though R. Adam Molnar holds the copyright, permission is granted for any non-commercial use. Questions, comments, requests, and compliments can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org, particularly compliments. Those are wonderful.