Jesus Accepts His Cross… Can I?

Throughout this year, each of our monthly eNewsletters will feature a reflection on one of the Stations of the Cross, with its connection to the life journey of St Mary of the Cross MacKillop.

You are invited to spend a little time each month journeying with Jesus and Mary MacKillop on their journeys, and to reflect on the way their sufferings mirror our own.

As you take this journey, you are invited to…

  • first: reflect at each Station upon what is happening to Jesus
  • then: explore the suggested links to the life of Mary MacKillop
  • finally: make links between each Station and your own life

 

Station 2: Jesus Accepts His Cross

 So they took Jesus and he went out, bearing his own cross. (Jn 19:17a)

Crucifixion was a common form of death at the time of Jesus.  It was considered to be a most humiliating and shameful way to die because it took away the honour of the person.  It was common for the one who was to be crucified to be forced to carry the cross-beam of the cross.  This carrying of the cross-beam was part of the public humiliation of the victim.  Strengthened by his close relationship with God, the innocent Jesus now moves towards the place of death.

Moments in the life of Mary MacKillop

 Look upon your crosses as stepping stones to an eternal life of happiness. (Mary MacKillop 1890)

Mary is not afraid of embracing the ‘crosses’ in her life.  She recognized the cross as a necessary part of the life of any Christian, as the complete surrender to God’s will in light of God’s providence.  One such moment took place in 1883 when Bishop Reynolds ordered Mary to immediately leave Adelaide. He claimed incorrectly that Rome had instructed him to hold a Commission of Enquiry in relation to the life of the Institute.  He declares, “You have no longer the confidence of the Sisterhood, nor is it in the interests of good order and discipline that you should remain in this Province.” For the good of the Institute and out of her respect for his position Mary obeys.

Moments in my life

  • How readily do I embrace the crosses in my life?
  • What have I learned from my own personal sufferings?

Take a moment to reflect in silence upon these aspects of your life.
In this moment first name, then try to embrace the crosses in your life.
Remember: God is there in the midst of them.
With each breath, draw in the energy of God, bringing you strength and hope.

Prayer

Jesus, you take up your cross, willing to embrace its suffering. Help me to experience the loving presence of God in those times when I suffer.  Give me the courage to persevere and to find meaning in those times of darkness when all seems lost.  Help me to be transformed through the pain in my life so that I can understand more fully how to be with others at such times.

Forgive those moments in my life when I have fallen into despair and lost hope.  Help me to always keep my eyes upon you.

 


Download the Reflection (PDF): Stations of the Cross – Journey with St Mary of the Cross MacKillop

Stations of the Cross: A Journey with St Mary of the Cross MacKillop – Valerie DeBrenni

© Trustees Sisters of St Joseph, 2012

Available for purchase @ $7.95 from Mary MacKillop Place Bookshop, Mount Street, North Sydney, or online.


 

Station 2 Image: Mary MacKillop Memorial Chapel, North Sydney