Pope Francis at the Wednesday audience gave a round-up of his trip last week to Panama for World Youth Day.
In the midst of his recap, he revealed his devotion to the Via Crucis, the Way of the Cross. This traditional prayer, which offers a meditation for 14 points along Jesus’ trek to Calvary, is often prayed on Fridays, especially during Lent. It’s also a customary part of the World Youth Day activities.
“Walking with Mary behind Jesus who carries the cross is the school of Christian life: there one learns patient, silent, and concrete love,” he said.
How to pray the Stations of the Cross as if you were there
Then Francis continued:
I will confide to you: I like the Via Crucis a lot, because it is going with Mary behind Jesus. And I always carry with me, so as to do it in any moment, a pocket Via Crucis, which was given to me as a gift by a very apostolic person in Buenos Aires. And when I have time, I take and follow the Via Crucis.
The Holy Father exhorted the faithful to pray the Via Crucis, because “it is following Jesus with Mary on the way of the cross, where He gave His life for us, for our redemption. In the Via Crucis one learns patient, silent, and concrete love.”
Walking Jesus’ “Way of the Cross” in Jerusalem (PHOTOS)