Friday, March 26, 2010

Diocesan Via Crucis

The diocesan stations of the cross is a moving experience of faith and commitment to social justice.

Today thousands of faithful came to Santa Rosa de Copán. Some had left their homes at two in the morning to get here.

Beginning at about 9:30 am, they walked the main street of town stopping to pray the traditional fourteen stations of the path of Christ from Pilate’s praetorium to the tomb. The Mass – a celebration of Christ’s death and resurrection – ended about 1:30 pm.

But the stations were far from traditional. The meditations connected the reality of the lives of the people in this, the poorest diocese in Honduras, with the suffering and death of Christ.

Among the hymns was the Nicaraguan hymn “Vos sos el Dios de los pobres” – You are the God of the poor, a God with tanned face who sweats in the streets. The final station – the Mass – featured the Salvadoran hymn “Cuando el pobre crea en el pobre” – When the poor believe in the poor we will be able to sing freedom, we will build fraternity.

The Way of the Cross was also an expression of the deep faith of the people as they knelt on the hard road during the stations, approached a priest to confess their sins, or received Christ in the Eucharist.

This is really the Church at prayer and at work.

Rather than write much, here are some photos.

They gathered for the first station, Jesus is condemned to death.

Second Station: Jesus carries his Cross.
En Honduras more than 70% live in extreme poverty.

The bishop and several priests wait at the third station.
The boy in front, Christian, lives in my neighborhood and is selling frozen fruit ices.

Mary, the sorrowful mother.

An indigenous woman, kneeling, deep in prayer.

Jesus falls the second time:
Our country lives the Calvary of Jesus, crushed and without the power to raise itself up from poverty and it abandonment by the state.

The poster at this station reads:
Corrupt politicians with their briefcases, seeking only to fill their pockets
and forgetting the people who suffer.

Confessions in the street during the procession.

Eleventh Station:
Jesus is nailed to the Cross.

Sister Nancy Meyerhofer, OSF, Dubuque Franciscan Sister,
missionary in Gracias, Lempira,
read the reflection for the eleventh station.

Twelfth station: Jesus dies on the Cross.

Mass - When the poor believe in the poor.


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More photos from the 2010 and the 2009 diocesan stations of the cross can be found in the Via Crucis Diocesano set on my flickr site.

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Update:

After the stations I had lunch with Sister Nancy and then went home for a short time. I headed to the Caritas office about 3:00 pm and noticed there were two police and one soldier at every corner on the street parallel to the main street, Calle Real Centenario. I figured some big wig was in town. Leavign Caritas at 5 there was still the armed presence on the corners of Calle Real Centenario. I asked one of hte poiliceman what was up. "The President is in town," he told me.

I have no idea why Pepe Lobe was here - perhaps to visit the meeting of coffee producers. It's a shame that he didn't arrive a few hours earlier to hear the pleas of the poor in the stations or be disturbed by the bishop's strong social justice homily at Mass. It might have helped the future of Honduras.



2 comments:

phoenixwoman said...

What is the cross to the human soul if not the body? What are the stations of the cross if not life itself? We all do walk that lonesome road.

--Charles

yensy arely cortez de salinas said...

HI MY NAME IS YENSY AND I´M LOOKING FOR NANCY MEYERHOFER CAN YOU PLEASE HELP ME FIND HER ? IT´S VERY IMPORTANT FOR ME...PLEASE GIVE HER MY EMAIL ADDRESS IF IT´S POSSIBLE. THAKS