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Monday 14 June |
Saint of the Day: Bl. Francisa de Paula de Jesus Isabel
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Text of the Stations of the Cross for 2020, led by Pope Francis

POPE VIA CRUCIS

Antoine Mekary | ALETEIA

Aleteia - published on 04/09/20

Sixth Station
Veronica wipes the face of Jesus

Walwyn | Flickr CC BY-NC 2.0

(Meditation by a catechist)

My heart says to you,“Your face, Lord, do I seek”. Hide not your face from me. Turn not your servant away in anger, you who have been my help. Cast me not off, forsake me not, O God of my salvation! (Ps 27:8-9).

As a catechist, I wipe away many tears, letting them flow: they flood uncontrollably from hearts that are broken. Many times I meet despairing souls who, in the darkness of prison, try to find a reason for the evil that to them seems infinite. Their tears are those of defeat and loneliness, of remorse and lack of understanding. I often imagine Jesus here in prison in my stead: how would he wipe away the tears? How would he ease the anguish of these men who feel trapped by what they have become in yielding to evil?

Coming up with an answer is hard, often impossible within the limits of our petty human logic. The way pointed out to me by Christ is to contemplate, without fear, those faces marred by suffering. I am asked to remain there with them, respecting their silence, listening to their pain, and seeking to look beyond prejudice. In the same way that Christ looks at our own weaknesses and limitations with eyes full of love. Everyone, including those in prison, has an opportunity each day to become a new person, thanks to Christ’s look which does not judge, but gives life and hope.

In this way, the tears that fall can become the seed of a beauty that was difficult even to imagine.

Lord Jesus, Veronica had pity on you: she encountered a suffering person and discovered the face of God. In prayer we entrust to your Father the men and women of our times who seek to wipe away the tears of so many of our brothers and sisters.

Let us pray.

O God, true light and source of all light, in weakness you reveal the power and radicalism of love. Imprint your face in our hearts, so that we can recognize you in all human suffering. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

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