17 Jun

Let us meditate on the Passion

“In the opinion of Saint Bonaventure, meditation on the Passion is the first and most important of all devotions. And did not all the saints make the sorrows of Jesus Christ the constant object of their contemplations? Thus, to all souls who wished to advance in the love of God, the seraphic Doctor gave the advice never to let a day pass without meditating on the Passion.

According to Saint Augustine, it is more advantageous, and more meritorious for heaven, to shed a single tear at the remembrance of the sufferings and death of Jesus Christ, than to fast every week for a year on bread and water. The Venerable Louis de Blois says that a meditation, even a simple reading on the Passion, is more beneficial to the soul than any other exercise of piety whatsoever. Nay, more, according to Saint Francis de Sales, all love, which has not its origin in the Passion of Our Lord Jesus Christ, is frivolous and dangerous.

‘Behold Him,’ cries the same saint, ‘behold this Divine Saviour stretched on the cross as on a pyre of honour, on which He dies for love of us, a love more agonising than death itself. Ah! why do we not fly to Him in Spirit, to die on the cross with Him, Who has been pleased to die for love of us. I will hold Him, we should exclaim, and I will never leave Him; I will die with Him, burning in the flames of His love; the same fire will consume the divine Creator and His miserable creature. My Jesus is all mine, and I am all His; I will live and die on His bosom, and nothing shall tear me from it!”

– St Alphonsus, in Laverty & Sons 1905 (eds)

Some of the numerous ways of meditating on the Passion of Christ:

– Assisting at Holy Mass

– Reading the Passion of Christ in either of the four Gospels and praying about it to Our Lord

– Reading the Bible passages about the Suffering Servant (Isaiah)

– Looking prayerfully at the crucifix for about a quarter of an hour, thinking at all times of His inexhaustible, selfless love for us (if possible, kneeling)

– Making the Stations of the Cross in Church

– Reading the Stations of the Cross (see ‘devotions’)

– Praying the Sorrowful Mysteries of the Rosary (see ‘devotions’)

– Meditating on Our Lord’s Agony in the Garden of Gethsemane (see ‘devotions’)

– Praying the fifteen St Bridget prayers on the Passion of Our Lord (see ‘devotions’)

– Praying the Seven Dolours of Mother Mary (see ‘devotions’)


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