The crucifixion and death of Jesus

by Victor Hoagland, C.P.
Constantly remember the pains of our crucified Love. Know that those great saints who now reign with divine love in heaven above reached the height of perfection by this very path. --St Paul of the Cross

The crucifixion and death of JesusPeople in love have no trouble remembering all kinds of things about each other — the color of eyes, the distinctive tone of voice, the gifts which bring delight, and the other person's characteristic moods and preferences. People in love remember the sacrifices they have made for each other over the years.

People in love also know very well the sufferings that burden each other’s heart. Indeed, being sure of a friend’s supportive care makes it possible for us to bear with enormous difficulties in life. Keeping in mind each other's pain teaches us to share our gifts sensitively and generously.

When we remember the pain of Jesus Crucified, gratitude soon follows because we recall that he endured those sufferings on our behalf. He is no longer suffering for us: “He did that once for all when he offered himself.” (Hebrews 7:28).

Christ does not need our strength now. But we give thanks for his love by sharing our compassion with those who suffer today. They are numberless and, too often, faceless and nameless. The path to holiness leads us to love our neighbor with the generosity of Jesus, who gave his life for us.

Prayer
Come, let us adore Christ the Lord, who was nailed to the cross for us.
When they came to the place called the skull, they crucified him and the criminals there, one on his right, the other on his left.
Psalm 116, 1-9
I love the Lord, who listened
to my voice in supplication,
Who turned an ear to me
on the day I called.

I was caught by the cords of death;
the snares of Sheol had seized me;
I felt agony and dread.

Then I called on the name of the Lord,
“O Lord, save my life!”

Gracious is the Lord and just;
yes, our God is merciful.
The Lord protects the simple;
I was helpless, but God saved me.

Return, my soul , to your rest;
The Lord has been good to you.

For my soul has been freed from death,
my eyes from tears, my feet from stumbling.
I shall walk before the Lord
in the land of the living.

Reading: 1 Peter 2, 23-24
When he was insulted, he returned no insult; when he suffered, he did not threaten; instead, he handed himself over to the one who judges justly. He himself bore our sins in his body upon the cross, so that, free from sin, we might live for righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed.

Intercessions
Blessed are you, Jesus, our Savior; you gladly suffered for us;
— you redeemed us with your own blood.

On the cross, you asked your Father to forgive those who were tormenting you;
— inspire us to love those who dislike or oppose us.

You made your cross into the tree of life;
— may all the baptized eat of its fruit.
Our Father...

Lord, God,
you appointed as the Redeemer of the world
your only Son, who was nailed to the cross.
Keep safe within us
the gifts of your mercy.
As we live in union with Jesus,
the mystery of our salvation,
may we share in the harvest of redemption.
We ask this through Jesus Christ, our Lord.
Amen.


Illustration: Duk Soon