Sunday 19 March 2023

Way of the Cross with St. Vincent Pallotti - Fr. Mathew Kanjiramkalayil - Pallotti Institute

Way of the Cross with St. Vincent Pallotti
Fr. Mathew Kanjiramkalayil
Pallotti Institute

I don’t recall how I stumbled upon this Stations of the Cross. But I have a PDF of it in a collection of various stations I have collected over the years. My parish is staffed by Polish Pallottine Priest. And I have been reading a bit about Saint Vincent Pallotti. I am always looking for another Way of the Cross to add to my devotional practices. I try and pray the stations each Friday during the year, and every day through Lent. We did a variation on this at our Parish this year during our Lenten retreat.  

This version was compiled by Fr. Mathew Kanjiramkalayil SAC, and his introduction states:

“Come! Follow me.....

The idea of preparing and publishing a 'Way of the Cross,' taking insights from St. Vincent Pallotti's spirituality, was conceived on the occasion of the Golden Jubilee of his Canonization. This task was entrusted to the Pallotti Institute and the brothers of Prabodhana by Rev. Fr. Jacob Nampudakam SAC, the Rector General. I thank the brothers and fathers who contributed to accomplish this task. I hope and pray that this 'Way of the Cross' journeyed with St. Vincent Pallotti may be an enriching prayer experience for those who use this book.

The fourteen Biblical themes from the Passion of Christ reproduced here, are found in the chapel of Prabodhana (Pallottine Seminary at Mysore). They differ from the traditional form. The glass work in Indian art form, in a series of arched window frames, together with the window grills below, constitute a theme, each relating to the Passion of Jesus. These are designed by Mr. Jyoti Sahi, a renowned Indian artist based in Bangalore.”

A sample station is:


L : We adore you, O Christ! and we praise you.
R : Because by your Holy Cross you have redeemed the world.

The theme “denial” is found both in the Old Testament as well as in the New Testament. Abraham denies Hagar when he casts her out into the desert with her son Ishmael (Gen 16: 6). The Scribes and the Pharisees denounce the woman caught in adultery (Jn 8: 3-11). They try to destroy Jesus (Lk 4:28-30). And Peter denies Jesus thrice ( Mt 26:69-75).

Like Judas, who betrayed Jesus, Peter denied him, and the other disciples disowned him by running away from him. Jesus felt the denial in the words and deeds of his own disciples. In our daily life, we deny or betray others due to our selfishness and our own personal agenda. As a result we breach trust and make many innocent people suffer. 

St. Vincent Pallotti warns us about the danger of mistrust. He says: “Your most serious infirmity is mistrust…so pray…to fill yourselves with spiritual faithfulness.”5 He wants us to accept Jesus totally into our lives and to always desire him alone in our lives, as he spoke of himself: “I want nothing, which is not pleasing to God; I want only God, God alone.”6 How often we have denied or betrayed our own trusted friends, relatives or community members?

Lord Jesus Christ, you shared in our weakness and accepted our guilt. Make us aware of our human weakness. Give us a sense of confidence and trust to remain faithful to you and others. Amen

Have mercy on us O Lord! Have mercy on us.

Oh, how sad and sore distressed,
Was that Mother highly blessed,
Of the sole begotten One!”

The 14 stations as presented in this volume are:

Jesus Has Last Supper With His Disciples
The Agony In The Garden
Peter Denies Jesus
Jesus Is Judged
Jesus Is Mocked
Jesus Meets His Mother
Jesus Meets Veronica
Jesus Is Helped On The Way
Jesus Meets The Women Of Jerusalem
Jesus Falls On The Way
Jesus Is Stripped Of His Garments
Jesus Is Nailed To The Cross
Jesus Dies On The Cross
Jesus Is Buried

It was a great blessing to pray these Stations at our church in community. And I have prayed it twice since as a private devotion. I am not a huge fan of the artwork in this volume for the stations. But I really love the reflection and prayer. 

This is another excellent Stations of the Cross and one I can easily recommend for personal, family, and corporate devotional use.

Note: This book is part of a series of reviews: 2023 Catholic Reading Plan

For all other reviews of Stations of the Cross click here.

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