The sixth station has been my favorite ever since I can remember. Making the Scriptural Way of the Cross in the parish in which I grew up, the verse recited from Sirach, “A faithful is a sturdy shelter; he who finds one finds a treasure,” would often cause me to tear up.
I desire to be a faithful friend to Jesus. St. Alphonse’s meditation has me confessing at the sixth marker that “Your face was beautiful before, but my sins have since disfigured it.” The sorrow I feel saying these words makes me want to take the place of St. Veronica and do something to make reparation to the Holy Face of Jesus.
Would I, though, be courageous enough to walk past the Roman soldiers, kneel down before my Savior and wipe his bloody, disfigured Face with my own clothing? I would like to think that compassion would move me towards bravery. I would like to think I am capable of heroic actions.
So I reflect, where did Veronica get her strength? To discover the answer I have only to look back two stations – Jesus meets his Mother. Think of the anguish of our Lady seeing her Son carrying such a heavy burden, falling under its weight, beaten and weak. Her face meets His. What grief! A sword pierces her heart. Yet, in her heart, she must have turned to the only One who could help her Son – the Father. Her simple prayer: “God, help Him!”
The Father answers her prayer almost immediately. By the next station, Simon is helping Jesus carry His cross, making the burden easier to bear.
Then, Veronica comes forward to wipe the Face covered in sweat and blood. Perhaps, Veronica found her strength through the prayers of Jesus’ most holy Mother. Grace stirred Veronica to move fearlessly past big, burly, mean soldiers to help One in need, to perform a small act of kindness with great love.
St. Veronica teaches me to be brave and trust in God’s protection when doing His will. She reveals that no act of love and compassion is too little, that God rewards greatly our small efforts.
I also learn from the sixth station to turn to Mary and ask for her prayers that I might become the saint that God is calling me to be.
St. Veronica, pray for us.
Our Lady of Sorrows, pray for us.
So, what is your favorite Station of the Cross? I am eager to hear why it is so meaningful to you
Copyright 2014, Kelly Guest
About the Author
God has given Kelly lots of wonderful opportunities to follow Him. She was a Dominican Sister of St. Cecilia in Nashville, an education coordinator for a Catholic Charities' program for pregnant teens, a middle school teacher, a director of religious education and is now a youth minister. Her most challenging and rewarding calling, though, is wife and mother of ten children. What she has learned, she blogs at CatholicMom.com.