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Stations of the Cross Inspired by the SVP: The Fifth and Sixth Stations

Walk alongside Jesus in his passion and Cross and be prepared to walk with compassion alongside our suffering brothers and sisters, with these meditations on the Way of the Cross in light of the work of the Society of St Vincent de Paul. The Fifth and Sixth Stations are included in this blog.

We’ll be praying our way through Lent two Stations of the Cross at the time, using Stations of the Cross: In Light of the Work of the Society of St Vincent de Paul. These stations, inspired by the work of SVP, uniquely help us to walk not only with Jesus in His Passion and Cross, but also alongside our suffering brothers and sisters.

If you missed the previous two Stations, you can catch up here.

5th Station: Simon helps Jesus carry the cross

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

What was Simon doing standing there? Had he been prevented from moving because of the big numbers of people squashed into narrow streets? Was he wondering what it was all about? Was he confused? Then they forced him to help Jesus carry the cross. Did he resent being made to do it? Or, was he frightened? We do not know the answers to these questions. But we do know that his sons, Alexander and Rufus, were members of the early Church.

Some of Frédéric’s friends noticed Frédéric leaving the church after having attended Mass but not going straight home. They noticed that after Mass he would go to the baker’s shop for bread which he then carried to the poor.7 It was as if he were carrying the celebration of the Mass into the homes of the poor. When the followers of Jesus suggested that the crowds be sent away so that they could go and buy some food, Jesus told them to give them something themselves. They did not have enough. And yet, they found that when they started to distribute the bread there was enough for everyone. Frédéric Ozanam knew that the work of the Society of St Vincent de Paul, and of all members of the Church, is to respond to every person in need.

I love you Jesus
my love above all things.
I repent with my whole heart for having offended you.
Never permit me
to separate myself from you again.
Grant that I may love you always
and then do with me what you will.

 Holy Mother, pierce me through,
in my heart each wound renew
of my Saviour crucified.

6th Station: Veronica wipes the face of Jesus

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

The person of Veronica is not mentioned in the Scriptures. She is a product of Christian tradition, but that does not make her any less real. Moved with pity for Jesus, we are told that she wiped his face with a cloth and the imprint of Jesus’s face remained on the cloth. Fittingly, the name tradition gives this woman, ‘Veronica’, means true image, true icon.

Whenever we are able to respond to each other in love, we are responding to Jesus. When we feed the hungry, it is Jesus we are feeding. When we clothe the naked, it is Jesus we are clothing. When we share a smile, or a conversation, or listen with attentiveness, we are doing this to Jesus. In this way our work becomes his work. Our thoughts are his thoughts. Our life becomes his life.

I love you Jesus
my love above all things.
I repent with my whole heart
for having offended you.
Never permit me
to separate myself from you again.
Grant that I may love you always
and then do with me what you will.

 Holy Mother, pierce me through,
in my heart each wound renew
of my Saviour crucified.


These Stations are extracted from our book Stations of the Cross: In Light of the Work of the Society of St Vincent de Paul. Walk alongside Jesus in his passion and Cross and be prepared to walk with compassion alongside our suffering brothers and sisters, with these meditations on the Way of the Cross in light of the work of the Society of St Vincent de Paul.

Pray these Stations at church, alone or with your parish, by ordering your copy of Stations of the Cross: In Light of the Work of the Society of St Vincent de Paul.