Thoughts for Good Friday – Ready to Walk, Come Rain or Shine

Ready to Walk, Come Rain or Shine

Tomorrow is a big day. My children and I will be joining dozens of other Catholic families in walking approximately 14 miles while reflecting on the Via Dolorosa. Fourteen miles to remember the 14 Stations of the Passion of Jesus.

For the kids the question on Thursday is: What is the weather going to be like? Last weekend we had freezing weather here in New Mexico and 60 mile an hour winds! There was no escape from the piercing daggers of the wind. But we know that tomorrow, that’s what it’s about…to offer up the discomfort, whatever it is.

We walk, pray silently, recite the rosary together, sing and stop after each mile to say the Stations. At about the 8 mile mark I am usually completely exhausted. It can be a real effort to keep going. It’s a powerful reminder that Jesus chose to “keep going”—to endure further torture—in order to completely offer expiation for our sins.

The sense of accomplishment our group feels at the end of our walk—we have windblown hair and shoes with new holes; there is usually someone with a twisted ankle; and a woman walks only the last few feet held up by teenagers and supported on her walker—it all makes us remember that Jesus accomplished His task as well. He conquered death itself!

Rejoicing comes a short time after this period of sorrow and pain.

What are you doing to honor Jesus this Good Friday? We will all experience suffering at some point in our lives; we are all called to be obedient to the Church and the commandments even when it isn’t easy; we can all offer little sacrifices…if we place these things before the cross of Christ we make this Friday into something “good.”

My mom sent out this message which I thought I would share:

Dear friends,

We have an Irish tradition which asks us to say a special prayer 33 times between the hours of noon and three p.m. on Good Friday. My Mom and Dad used to say it and my Mother’s folks in Chicago did too, that was at the end of the nineteenth century! I don’t know how much further back it goes…but more I imagine. Grandma Ashley came from Ireland, so she brought it from the Old Country. Here’s the prayer:

“O, my Lord Jesus, I humbly beg of you
by the merits of Thy precious blood,
by Thy Divine Heart and the
the intercession of Thy cruel death,
to assist me in my pressing necessities.”

God bless you all. On Sunday we will rejoice again!