Introduction
00:00 / 02:26
Station 1
00:00 / 02:24
Station 2
00:00 / 02:27
Station 3
00:00 / 01:44

Today is Good Friday. It is a time where we reflect on the crucifixion of Jesus Christ and what it may mean for us in our lives today. Specifically, what may the crucifixion mean for us during this pandemic? One of the liturgical methods of reflection for Good Friday, is called “Stations of the Cross.” Historically, it has been a devotion to engage the story of Jesus’ crucifixion through reading the scripture, reflection, and prayer. By the 20th century, 14 stations have been identified through Scripture. Each of the stations are an invitation for you to contemplate on who Jesus is for you. 

 

In the context of our pandemic, I wanted to reimagine the “Stations of the Cross” a little differently by excavating a theme of solidarity. By solidarity I mean, supporting others not only in posture, but also through action. I want to move away from a passive and powerless Jesus, in which suffering is glorified. I want to move away from an engagement that focuses solely on the individual. Instead, I want to lift-up an image of Jesus that is courageous, compassionate, and rebellious. I want to lift-up an image of Jesus that cares for us individually, but at the same time calls us into community. Therefore, today’s meditation will be called “Stations of Solidarity,” which will consist of 5 stations. I will begin each station by reading a Bible Passage that is related to the “Stations of the Cross.” Then, I will give a statement of invitation for imagination and contemplation. This will be followed by a period of meditation and closed with a prayer. Take this time right now to find a quiet place, where you can engage the devotion intently. 

  • Bible Verse: In Luke 22:39 - 42 it says this, “39 He came out and went, as was his custom, to the Mount of Olives; and the disciples followed him. 40 When he reached the place, he said to them, “Pray that you may not come into the time of trial.” 41 Then he withdrew from them about a stone’s throw, knelt down, and prayed, 42 “Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me; yet, not my will but yours be done.”

 

  • Call to imagination and contemplation: How can we prepare ourselves for the work of solidarity during this pandemic? What are the things we need to do before we engage the work of creating a heaven here on earth? How are our own cups overflowing? As Jesus exclaimed his emotions to God, what do WE need to release into the space of God’s grace?

 

[Moment of Meditation]

 

  • Prayer: Shall we pray. Bless those who question. Bless those whose cups are full or overflowing. Bless those who yearn for rest and freedom. Let us also listen to the murmurs of our hearts. As we move inward, let us prepare to move outward. Amen.

  • Bible Verse: In Matthew 25:47 - 54 it says this, “47 While he was still speaking, Judas, one of the twelve, arrived; with him was a large crowd with swords and clubs, from the chief priests and the elders of the people. 48 Now the betrayer had given them a sign, saying, “The one I will kiss is the man; arrest him.” 49 At once he came up to Jesus and said, “Greetings, Rabbi!” and kissed him. 50 Jesus said to him, “Friend, do what you are here to do.” Then they came and laid hands on Jesus and arrested him. 51 Suddenly, one of those with Jesus put his hand on his sword, drew it, and struck the slave of the high priest, cutting off his ear. 52 Then Jesus said to him, “Put your sword back into its place; for all who take the sword will perish by the sword. 53 Do you think that I cannot appeal to my Father, and he will at once send me more than twelve legions of angels? 54 But how then would the scriptures be fulfilled, which say it must happen in this way?” 

 

  • Call to imagination and contemplation: As Jesus calls us to, “Put your sword back into its place; for all who take the sword will perish by the sword,” how might we engage in solidarity? Let us remember that non-violence is NOT silence or passivity. Non-violence is active and engaging. How do we adapt this call for non-violence during this time?

 

[Moment of Meditation]

 

  • Prayer: Shall we pray. Bless those with anger. Prevent us from seeking vengeance. Let us transform this anger into passion, to heal what has been broken during this time. Amen.

  • Bible Verse: After the call from Jesus to “Put our swords away,” in Matthew 25:55 - 56 it says, “55 At that hour Jesus said to the crowds, “Have you come out with swords and clubs to arrest me as though I were a bandit? Day after day I sat in the temple teaching, and you did not arrest me. 56 But all this has taken place, so that the scriptures of the prophets may be fulfilled.” Then all the disciples deserted him and fled.”

 

  • Call to imagination and contemplation: When others may flee the call to solidarity, what moves us to stay? What are you rooted in? How can you water those roots? 

 

[Moment of Meditation]

 

  • Prayer: Shall we pray. Let us root ourselves in the resilience found in each and every one of our stories, the stories of liberation in the Bible, and in the teachings of Jesus Christ. In this time of turmoil and uncertainty, let us remember the certainty of God’s grace, compassion, and empowering love. Let us remember our roots. Amen.

“Stations of Solidarity” 

A Good Friday Meditation

Station 2 - Remembering Non-Violence

Station 1 - Release

Station 3 - Remembering our Roots

Station 4 - A Station of Engaging our Emotional and Physical Pain

Station 4
00:00 / 03:31

  • Bible Verse: In Mark 14:61-64 it says this, “55 Now the chief priests and the whole council were looking for testimony against Jesus to put him to death; but they found none. 56 For many gave false testimony against him, and their testimony did not agree. 57 Some stood up and gave false testimony against him, saying, 58 “We heard him say, ‘I will destroy this temple that is made with hands, and in three days I will build another, not made with hands.’” 59 But even on this point their testimony did not agree. 60 Then the high priest stood up before them and asked Jesus, “Have you no answer? What is it that they testify against you?” 61 But he was silent and did not answer. Again the high priest asked him, “Are you the Messiah, the Son of the Blessed One?” 62 Jesus said, “I am; and ‘you will see the Son of Man seated at the right hand of the Power,’ and ‘coming with the clouds of heaven.’” 63 Then the high priest tore his clothes and said, “Why do we still need witnesses? 64 You have heard his blasphemy! What is your decision?” All of them condemned him as deserving death. 65 Some began to spit on him, to blindfold him, and to strike him, saying to him, “Prophesy!” The guards also took him over and beat him.”

 

  • Call to imagination and contemplation: In picturing the cross as a symbol of solidarity with those suffering in Jesus’ time, how may Jesus’ emotional and physical pain inform our own? How can we be there for the emotional and physical pain of others during this time?

 

[Moment of Meditation]

 

  • Prayer: Shall we pray. Dear God, you give us permission to sit in our grief and mourning. Let us remember that in our struggle and suffering you are here and present. During this time we pray for those who are suffering: the essential workers, the healthcare workers, the people who have lost jobs, homes, and family, and those who have nothing to lose, who don’t have homes, who live on the streets, who live in poverty around the world. We pray for those who are disproportionately affected, where our systems in place fail to take care of those who are most vulnerable. You carry the cross for them, for us. Amen.

Station 5 - A Station of Remembering Community

Station 5
00:00 / 02:24

  • Bible Verse: In Luke 23:26 - 28, it says this, “26 As they led him away, they seized a man, Simon of Cyrene, who was coming from the country, and they laid the cross on him, and made him carry it behind Jesus. 27 A great number of the people followed him, and among them were women who were beating their breasts and wailing for him. 28 But Jesus turned to them and said, “Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for me, but weep for yourselves and for your children.” 

 

  • Call to imagination and contemplation: As Simon of Cyrene carried the cross of Jesus, who is helping us carry our own crosses? Who is standing in solidarity with us? As you carry the cross, and look left and right, who do you see? 

 

[Moment of Meditation]

 

  • Prayer: Shall we pray. Let us remember that we are not alone. Let us remember the communities that you have forged, the communities that we inhabit. Let us remember your call to not weep for you, but to weep for each other. Let us weep together. Let us mourn together. Let us grieve together. Let us carry the crosses of this pandemic together. Let us be in Solidarity together for those who are suffering. Amen.

RIVERSIDE UNITED METHODIST CHURCH

Open Hearts. Open Minds. Open Doors.

803 Vallejo Way, Sacramento, CA 95818. 916-443-4360. 

© 2020 Riverside United Methodist Church of Sacramento. All Rights Reserved.

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