The gifts in your March CatholicMonth.ly box invite you deeper into the Passion of Our Lord Jesus Christ. When we pray devotions like the Stations of the Cross, we can reflect on moments or snapshots of the Passion from different angles that are all meaningful. If you start to notice other perspectives on the Passion in addition to what you pray about in the Stations, that’s great! To help you go deeper on your own, here are three “snapshots” you can use to supplement the Stations of the Cross or your own personal reflections.
Our Lord’s Passion doesn’t start at Calvary; it starts the night before, with his disciples. Judas betrays Jesus, the rest of the disciples flee when Jesus is arrested, and then Peter denies him three times. Our Lord’s Passion involved the emotional and psychological suffering of being betrayed and abandoned by His closest companions. Jesus knows what it feels like when the people we love leave us hurt and lonely.
In the very last moments before his death, Jesus sees his mother and one of his disciples standing before the cross. He says to Mary, “Behold, your son.” To the disciple he says, “Behold your mother.” Thus, one of Jesus’ last acts on earth before he dies is to establish Mary as our spiritual mother. It’s fitting that he does this as he hangs nailed on the crucifix. Through the power of his Passion and death, Jesus pours out his graces on Mary to be our mother—and he pours out his graces on us through her.
After Jesus takes his last breath on the cross, a soldier thrusts his lance into Jesus’ side to ensure he is dead. Immediately blood and water pours out. The Fathers of the Church saw a huge significance in this moment. They explained that the blood and water was a sign of the graces of Baptism and the Eucharist being poured out into the world. They also compared this moment to Eve being created out of the side of the sleeping Adam; in an analogous way, the life of the Church was born from the side of the crucified Christ, the New Adam.
May these reflections help you grow in love and devotion to Our Crucified Lord. Have a blessed March, and see you next month!