Stations of the Cross


MOST merciful Jesus! With a contrite heart and penitent spirit I bow down in profound humility before Thy divine majesty. I adore Thee as my supreme Lord and master; I believe in Thee, I hope in Thee, I love Thee above all things. I am heartily sorry for having offended Thee, my supreme and only good. I resolve to amend my life; and though I am unworthy to obtain mercy, yet the sight of Thy holy cross, on which Thou didst die, inspires me with hope and consolation. I will therefore meditate on Thy sufferings, and visit the stations of Thy passion in company with Thy sorrowful Mother and my guardian angel, with the intention of promoting Thy glory and saving my soul.

I desire to gain all the indulgences granted for this exercise, for myself and for the suffering souls in purgatory. O merciful Redeemer, who hast said; "And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all things to myself," draw my heart and my love to Thee, that I may perform this devotion as perfectly as possible, and that I may live and die in union with Thee. Amen.

Before Every Station

We adore Thee, O Christ, and praise Thee: Because by Thy holy cross Thou hast redeemed the world.

After Every Station

Lord Jesus, crucified: Have mercy on us.


First Station


JESUS, most innocent, who neither did nor could commit sin, was condemned to death, and, moreover, to the ignominious death of the cross. To remain a friend of Caesar, Pilate delivered Him to His enemies. A fearful crime—to condemn innocence to death, and to offend God, in order not to displease men.


O INNOCENT Jesus, having sinned I am guilty of eternal death, but Thou dost willingly accept the unjust sentence of death, that I might live. For whom, then, shall I henceforth live, if not for Thee, my Lord? Should I desire to please men, I could not be Thy servant. Let me, therefore, rather displease men and all the world than not please Thee, O Jesus.

Our Father, etc. Hail Mary, etc.


Second Station


ON BEHOLDING the cross, our divine Saviour most willingly stretched out His bleeding arms, lovingly embraced it, tenderly kissed it, and placing it on His bruised shoulder, despite His exhaustion joyfully carried it.


O MY Jesus, I can not be Thy friend and follower if I refuse to carry the cross. O dearly beloved cross, I embrace thee, I kiss thee, I rejoice to receive thee from the hands of God. Far be it from me to glory in anything save in the cross of my Lord and Redeemer. By it the world shall be crucified to me, and I to the world, that I may be Thine for ever.

Our Father, etc. Hail, Mary, etc.


Third Station


OUR dear Saviour carrying the cross was so weakened by its heavy weight as to fall exhausted to the ground. Our sins and misdeeds were the heavy burden which oppressed Him; the cross was to Him light and sweet, but our sins were galling and insupportable.


O MY Jesus! Thou didst bear my burden and the heavy weight of my sins. Should I, then, not bear in union with Thee my easy burden of suffering and accept the sweet yoke of Thy commandments? Thy yoke is sweet and Thy burden light; I therefore willingly accept it. I will take up Thy cross and follow Thee.

Our Father, etc. Hail Mary, etc.


Fourth Station


HOW painful and how sad it must have been for Mary, the sorrowful Mother, to behold her beloved Son laden with the burden of the cross! What unspeakable pangs her most tender heart experienced! How earnestly she yearned to die instead of, or at least with, Jesus! Implore this sorrowful Mother that she assist you in the hour of your death.


O JESUS, O Mary! I am the cause of the great and manifold pains which pierce your loving hearts. O that my heart also would feel and experience at least some of your sufferings! O Mother of sorrows, let me participate in the sufferings which thou and thy Son endured for me, and let me experience thy sorrow, that, afflicted with thee, I may enjoy thy assistance in the hour of my death.

Our Father, etc. Hail Mary, etc.


Fifth Station


SIMON of Cyrene was compelled to help Jesus carry His cross, and Jesus accepted His assistance. How willingly He would permit you also to carry the cross! He calls you, but you hear Him not; He invites you, but you decline. What a reproach, to bear the cross reluctantly!


O JESUS! Whosoever does not take up His cross and follow Thee is not worthy of Thee. Behold, I join Thee in the way of Thy cross; I will be Thy assistant, following Thy footsteps, that I may come to Thee in eternal life.

Our Father, etc. Hail Mary, etc.


Sixth Station


IMPELLED by devotion and compassion, Veronica presents her veil to Jesus to wipe His disfigured face. And Jesus imprints on it His holy countenance; a great recompense for so slight a service. What return do you make to your Saviour for His great and manifold benefits?


MOST merciful Jesus! What return shall I make for all the benefits Thou didst bestow on me? Behold, I consecrate myself entirely to Thy service. I offer and consecrate to Thee my heart. Imprint upon it Thy sacred image, never to be effaced again by sin.

Our Father, etc. Hail Mary, etc.


Seventh Station


JESUS, suffering under the weight of His cross, again falls to the ground; but His cruel executioners do not permit Him to rest a moment. Pushing and striking Him, they urge Him onward. It is the frequent repetition of our sins which oppresses Jesus. Witnessing this, how can I continue to sin?


O JESUS, son of David, have mercy on me! Offer me Thy helping hand, and aid me that I may not fall again into my former sins. From this very moment I will earnestly strive to reform; nevermore will I sin. Do Thou, O sole support of the weak, by Thy grace, without which I can do nothing, strengthen me to carry out faithfully this my resolution.

Our Father, etc. Hail Mary, etc.


Eighth Station


THESE devoted women, moved by compassion, weep over the suffering Saviour. But He turns to them, saying, "Weep not for Me, who am innocent, but weep for yourselves and for your children." Weep thou also; for there is nothing more pleasing to Our Lord, and nothing more profitable for thyself, than tears shed from contrition for thy sins.


O JESUS, who shall give to my eyes a torrent of tears, that day and night I may weep for my sins? I beseech Thee through Thy bloody tears to move my heart by Thy divine grace, so that from my eyes tears may flow abundantly, and I may weep all days over Thy sufferings, and still more over their cause, my sins.

Our Father, etc. Hail, Mary, etc.


Ninth Station


JESUS, arriving exhausted at the foot of Calvary, falls for the third time to the ground. His love for us is not exhausted, not diminished. What a fearfully oppressive burden our sins must be to cause Jesus to fall so often! Had He, however, not taken them upon Himself, they would have plunged us into the abyss of hell.


MOST merciful Jesus! I return Thee infinite thanks for not permitting me to continue in sin, and to fall, as I have so often deserved, into the depths of hell. Enkindle in me an earnest desire of amendment. Let me never again relapse, but vouchsafe me Thy grace to persevere to the end of my life.

Our Father, etc. Hail Mary, etc.


Tenth Station


AFTER arriving on Calvary, our Saviour was cruelly despoiled of His garments. How painful must this have been, because they adhered to His wounded and torn body, and with them parts of His bloody skin were removed! All the wounds of Jesus are renewed. He is despoiled of His garments that He might die possessed of nothing. How happy shall I die after laying aside my former self with all evil inclinations and desires!


INDUCE me, O Jesus! to lay aside my former self, and to be renewed according to Thy will and desire. I will not spare myself, however painful this should be for me; despoiled of things temporal, of my own will, I desire to die, in order to live for Thee for ever.

Our Father, etc. Hail Mary, etc.


Eleventh Station


JESUS, being stripped of His garments, was violently thrown upon the cross, and His hands and feet were most cruelly nailed thereto. In such excruciating torments He remained silent, because it thus pleased His heavenly Father. He suffered patiently because He suffered for us. How do I act in suffering and affliction? How fretful and impatient, how full of complaints I am!


O JESUS, gracious Lamb of God! I renounce for ever my impatience. Crucify, O Lord, my flesh and its concupiscences. Scorch, scathe, and punish me in this world; do but spare me in the next! I commit my destiny to Thee, resigning myself to Thy holy will; may it be done in all things.

Our Father, etc. Hail Mary, etc.


Twelfth Station


BEHOLD Jesus crucified! Behold the wounds He received for the love of you! His whole appearance betokens love. His head is bent to kiss you; His arms are extended to embrace you; His Heart is open to receive you. O superabundance of love! Jesus, the Son of God dies that man may live and be delivered from everlasting death.


O MOST amiable Jesus! Who will grant me that I may die for love of Thee? I will at least endeavor to die to the world. How must I regard the world and its vanities, when I behold Thee hanging on the cross, covered with wounds? O Jesus, receive me into Thy wounded Heart; I belong entirely to Thee; for Thee alone do I desire to live and to die.

Our Father, etc. Hail Mary, etc


Thirteenth Station


JESUS did not descend from the cross, but remained on it till after His death. And when taken down from it, He, in death as in life, rested on the bosom of His Mother. Persevere in your resolutions of reform, and do not part from the cross; he that persevereth to the end shall be saved. Consider, moreover, how pure the heart should be that receives the body and blood of Christ in the adorable Sacrament of the Altar.


O LORD Jesus! Thy lifeless body, mangled and torn, found a worthy resting-place on the bosom of Thy virgin Mother. Have I not compelled Thee often to dwell in my heart, full of sin and impurity as it was? Create in me a new heart, that I may worthily receive Thy most sacred body in holy communion, and that Thou mayest remain in me, and I in Thee, for all eternity.

Our Father, etc. Hail Mary, etc


Fourteenth Station


THE body of Jesus is laid in a stranger's tomb. He who in this world had not whereupon to rest His head, would not even have a grave of His own, because He was not of this world. You, who are so attached to the world, henceforth despise it, that you may not perish with it.


O JESUS, Thou hast set me apart from the world; what, then, shall I seek therein? Thou hast created me for heaven; what, then, have I to do with the world? Depart from me, deceitful world, with Thy vanities! Henceforth I will follow the way of the cross traced out for me by my Redeemer, and journey onward to my heavenly home, there to dwell for ever and ever.

Our Father, etc. Hail Mary, etc.


ALMIGHTY and eternal God, merciful Father, who hast given to the human race Thy beloved Son as an example of humility, obedience, and patience, to precede us on the way of life, bearing the cross; graciously grant, that we, inflamed by His infinite love, may take up the sweet yoke of His Gospel, together with the mortification of the cross, following Him as His true disciples, so that we shall one day rise gloriously with Him, and joyfully hear the final sentence: "Come, ye blessed of my Father, and possess the kingdom which has been prepared for you from the beginning," where Thou reignest with the Father and the Holy Ghost, and where we hope to reign with Thee throughout all eternity. Amen.





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