The Living Stations of the Cross to place on Good Friday at St. Jude Parish in Sarasota. (COURTESY PHOTOS)

Stations of the Cross: A spiritual pilgrimage

Sarasota  |  While Easter Sunday is the celebration of the divine mystery — Jesus’s resurrection from the dead — the path of his suffering under the Roman Prefect Pon-tius Pilate and the bearing of the cross is a story which has especially significant meaning.

On Good Friday (the Friday before Easter Sunday), many Catholics participate in the Stations of the Cross (Via Crucis), which consists of 14 scenes from the Passion fol-lowing the path on which Christ carried the cross before his crucifixion. Pope Francis took part in a large Living Stations of the Cross at the Roman Colosseum. The devo-tion allows the faithful to make a spiritual pilgrimage and meditate on the Passion of Christ. 

For the faithful of St. Jude Parish in Sarasota, the living stations in something the Parish community takes seriously. In a field behind the Parish, complete with Jesus crowned with thorns, actors were decked-out in centurion garb and others playing key figures in the retelling of the story. Hundreds followed the procession, stopping along the way to re-live the suffering Christ endured. 

The reenactment of the Lord’s Passion included the betrayal of Christ at the Garden of Gethsemane by Judas, and then his appearance before Pontius Pilate, as well as his sentencing to death. Each station was recited in English and Spanish.

The Stations of the Cross took place Good Friday at many Parishes throughout the Diocese, whether it was inside a Parish Church or outside, the devotion and spiritual journey was profound. In addition, many schools hold Passion plays as an educational tool for students of all ages.