Wednesday, 13 April 2022

Praying at the Stations of the Cross in
Lent 2022: 13 April 2022 (Station 11)

Jesus is nailed to the Cross … Station 11 in the Stations of the Cross in the Church of the Annunciation, Clonard, Wexford (Photograph: Patrick Comerford, 2022)

Patrick Comerford

We are now in Holy Week, the last and closing week of Lent. Wednesday in Holy Week is known in many parts of the Church as ‘Spy Wednesday’ and the prayer in the Parish of Stony Stratford with Calverton today (13 April 2022) is ‘For the Bishop and his priests.’

But, even before today begins, I am taking some time early this morning for prayer, reflection and reading.

During Lent this year, in this Prayer Diary on my blog each morning, I have been reflecting on the Psalms each morning. But during these two weeks of Passiontide, Passion Week and Holy Week, I am reflecting in these ways:

1, Short reflections on the Stations of the Cross, illustrated by images in the Church of the Annunciation, Clonard, Wexford, and the Church of Saint Mary and Saint Giles in Stony Stratford, Milton Keynes;

2, the Gospel reading of the day in the lectionary adapted in the Church of Ireland;

3, a prayer from the USPG prayer diary.

Station 11, Jesus is nailed to the Cross:

In an unusual arrangement, the Stations of the Cross in the church in Clonard are set in the curved outer wall of the church in 14 windows designed by Gillian Deeny of Wicklow. In her windows, she emphasises the role of women in the Passion story.

Her windows were made in association with Abbey Glass, where she worked with the cut-out shapes of coloured glass, the pigment being a mixture of lead oxide, ground glass and colour. Each window is signed by the artist.

The Stations of the Cross on the north and south walls of the nave in Stoney Stratford were donated in memory of John Dunstan (1924-1988).

The Eleventh Station in the Stations of the Cross has a traditional description such as ‘Jesus is nailed to the Cross.’

When I put in a search for Nails on Google, trying any of the towns I have lived in, I get endless lists of nail bars offering glamorous treatments that I am never going to contemplate or need.

But there is nothing glamorous about the nails and hands in Station XI in these Stations of the Cross in Wexford and Stony Stratford.

In this station in Clonard, Christ is pale and stretched as he is nailed to the cross by two men, one nailing his hands to arms of the cross, the other nailing his feet to the foot of the cross, Christ crown of thorns cast aside beneath his right arm pit.

The scene is more awkward in Stoney Stratford as a lone figure holds a hammer in one hand as he tries to affix the footrest at the base of the cross, while Christ’s left arm seems to have gone unattended, and the inscription INRI has yet to be affixed.

Christ’s eyes are filled with pain, yet waiting for more pain.

Jesus is nailed to the Cross … Station 11 in the Stations of the Cross in the Church of Saint Mary and Saint Giles in Stony Stratford, Milton Keynes (Photograph: Patrick Comerford, 2022)

John 13: 21-32 (NRSVA):

21 After saying this Jesus was troubled in spirit, and declared, ‘Very truly, I tell you, one of you will betray me.’ 22 The disciples looked at one another, uncertain of whom he was speaking. 23 One of his disciples—the one whom Jesus loved—was reclining next to him; 24 Simon Peter therefore motioned to him to ask Jesus of whom he was speaking. 25 So while reclining next to Jesus, he asked him, ‘Lord, who is it?’ 26 Jesus answered, ‘It is the one to whom I give this piece of bread when I have dipped it in the dish.’ So when he had dipped the piece of bread, he gave it to Judas son of Simon Iscariot. 27 After he received the piece of bread, Satan entered into him. Jesus said to him, ‘Do quickly what you are going to do.’ 28 Now no one at the table knew why he said this to him. 29 Some thought that, because Judas had the common purse, Jesus was telling him, ‘Buy what we need for the festival’; or, that he should give something to the poor. 30 So, after receiving the piece of bread, he immediately went out. And it was night.

31 When he had gone out, Jesus said, ‘Now the Son of Man has been glorified, and God has been glorified in him. 32 If God has been glorified in him, God will also glorify him in himself and will glorify him at once.’

Today’s Prayer:

The theme in this week’s prayer diary of the Anglican mission agency USPG (United Society Partners in the Gospel) is ‘Light in the Darkness.’ This theme was introduced on Sunday by the Revd Anthony Gyu-Yong Shim of the Diocese of Daejeon in the Anglican Church of Korea. The prayer in the USPG Prayer Diary today (13 April 2022) invites us to pray:

We pray for the congregation at Saint Mark’s in the Diocese of Daejeon and the ministry of the Revd Anthony Gyu-Yong Shim.

Yesterday’s reflection

Continued tomorrow

Scripture quotations are from the New Revised Standard Version Bible: Anglicised Edition copyright © 1989, 1995, National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide. http://nrsvbibles.org

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