Second Station Jesus takes up his Cross(Meditation by two parents whose daughter was murdered)The soldiers led him away inside the palace (that is, the praetorium); and they called together the whole battalion. And they clothed him in a purple cloak, and plaiting a crown of thorns they put it on him. And they began to salute him, “Hail, King of the Jews!” And they struck his head with a reed, and spat upon him, and they knelt down in homage to him. And when they had mocked him, they stripped him of the purple cloak, and put his own clothes on him. And they led him out to crucify him(Mk 15:16-20).During that horrible summer our life as parents died together with that of our two daughters. One of them was murdered along with her closest friend by the blind violence of a ruthless man; the other, who miraculously survived, was forever deprived of her smile. Ours was a life of sacrifices based on work and family. We taught our children to respect others and to value serving the poor. We often ask ourselves: “Why did it happen to us, this evil which engulfed us?”. We find no peace. Nor is justice, in which we had always trusted, able to relieve these deep wounds: our condemnation to suffering will never end.Time has not eased the weight of the cross placed upon our shoulders: we are unable to forget our daughter who is no longer with us. We are elderly, more and more vulnerable and victims of the worst pain that can exist: surviving the death of a daughter.This is difficult to say, but at the moment in which despair seems to take over, the Lord in different ways comes to meet us, giving us the grace to love one another as spouses, and to support one another, hard as it is. He invites us to keep the door of our home open to the poor and the despairing, welcoming whoever knocks, even if only for a bowl of soup. The commandment to perform acts of charity is for us a kind of salvation: we do not want to surrender to evil. God’s love is truly capable of renewing life because, before us, his Son Jesus underwent human suffering so as to experience true compassion.Lord Jesus, it pains us to see you struck, mocked and stripped, an innocent victim of inhumane cruelty. On this night of sorrow, we plead with your Father and entrust to him all those who have endured violence and evil.Let us pray.O God, our justice and our redemption, who gave us your only Son and glorified him on the throne of the cross, instil your hope in our hearts so that we can recognize you present in the dark moments of our life. Comfort us in every affliction and support us in our trials as we await the coming of your kingdom. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.