Third Printing - 1993


        +    Nihil Obstat:
            Rev. Isidore Dixon, STD
            Censor Librorum

        +    Imprimatur:
            Rev. William J. Kane
            Vicar General for the
            Archdiocese of Washington
            August 8, 1989


The nihil obstat and imprimatur are official declarations that a book or pamphlet is free of doctrinal or moral error. No implication is contained therein that those who have granted the nihil obstat and the imprimatur agree with the content, opinions or statements expressed.


    copyright 1989 - Rev T. G. Morrow


    Illustrations by Deborah Morrow


    This booklet is dedicated to the exemplar of all
    disciples, Mary, mother of God.

To order additional copies, refer to inside back cover.

    Printed by
    St Martin de Porres Dominican Community
    New Hope, Kentucky


Were you there when they crucified my Lord?
Were you there when they crucified my Lord?
Oh...sometimes it causes me to tremble, tremble, tremble.
Were you there when they crucified my Lord?

Were you there when he knelt alone in prayer?
(Repeat, as above.)


Priest:    Christ suffered for you
        and left you an example
        that you should follow in his steps
                    (1 Pet 2:21).

All: Lord Jesus, last night you knelt in a garden
    and sweat blood over this way
    we are about to travel with you.
    You would walk a physical way of the cross.
    We, a spiritual.

    Your human will fought to avoid this "cup,"
    but at last you embraced the Father's will
    and found peace.
    You surrendered, "Thy will be done,"
    and went to meet your death.

    Even now, as we kneel before you
    we wonder why we go this way with you.
    But you remind us
    that if we would be your disciples
    we must pick up our cross
    and follow in your steps (Mk 8:34).
    Disciples let us be.

Were you there when He stood before the judge?


Priest:    We adore you O Christ and we praise you.
All:    (Genuflecting) Because by your holy cross
    you have redeemed the world.

Priest:    Though harshly treated, he submitted
        and opened not his mouth:
        Like a lamb led to the slaughter,
        or a sheep before the shearers,
        he was silent...
        Oppressed and condemned,
        he was taken away.(Is 53:7, 8)

All:    Lord, You stand before Pilate.
    Divine power before human.
    Meekness before arrogance, love before fear.
    Pilate's power seems impressive, bold.
    But the power of the world is weak, unstable.
    Pilate vacillates between expediency and truth:
    "What about your 'king'?" he pleads.
    "We have no king but Caesar!"
    the crowd responds.
    Politics over religion!
    Pilate makes the political choice,
    saying in effect, "I'm opposed to this, but..."
    He condemns innocent blood.
    Lord, how often, by our indifference,
    our apathy,
    are we counted among today's Pilates,
    still at it, condemning innocent blood:
    the preborn, the weak, the starving.
    Help us stand as disciples before the world
    with you... with them.

Were you there when he knelt to take his cross?


Priest:    We adore you O Christ and we praise you.
All:    (Genuflecting) Because by your holy cross
    you have redeemed the world.

Priest:    If anyone wishes to come after me,
        he must deny his very self,
        take up his cross,
        and follow in my steps (Mk 8:34).

All:    Your cross is harshly thrown at your feet.
    Do you, as does the priest at Mass,
    bend to kiss your altar of sacrifice
    before taking it
    on your blood-stained shoulders?
    As the Father fashioned this cross for you,
    so have you fashioned one
    for each of us, your disciples.
    You have carved each cross
    with your own hands, and weighed it,
    that it be not one ounce too heavy
    for our strength.
    You have anointed it with consolations,
    and kissed it,
    before placing it gently on our shoulders.
    Keep before us the words of St Teresa of Avila:
    "When you embrace the cross
    you do not feel it."
    Teach us, your disciples,
    to embrace our crosses:
    our sicknesses, disappointments,
    failures, family trials, the monotony of life...
    even to kiss these crosses for love of you.

Were you there when he fell beneath his cross?


Priest:    We adore you O Christ and we praise you.
All:    (Genuflecting) Because by your holy cross
    you have redeemed the world.

Priest:    It was our infirmities that he bore,
        our sufferings that he endured...
        He was pierced for our offenses,
        crushed for our sins (Is 53:4, 5).

All:    Your journey has but begun,
    yet already the cross crushes
    your weakened body to the ground.

    What shame to fall before so great a crowd.
    What shame when I fall before so great a God.
    I sometimes become discouraged
    with my weaknesses: my anger, laziness, pride;
    my irrational desires
    for sex, food, drink, money,
    constant stimulation.
    Let the sight of you
    struggling to your feet
    under the blows and kicks of the soldiers
    inspire me to get up when I fall,
    to return to your forgiving, merciful heart.
    Make me aware of my weaknesses,
    that your power may rest upon me,
    and enable me to rise again
    to penitent, but confident, discipleship.

Were you there when sweet Mary faced her Son?


Priest:    We adore you O Christ and we praise you.
All:    (Genuflecting) Because by your holy cross
    you have redeemed the world.

Priest:    Can a mother forget her infant,
        be without compassion
        for the child of her womb? (Is 49:15)

All:    It is one thing to endure taunts and ridicule,
    to be treated like a common criminal,
    to be driven like an animal to execution.
    But, now, for your mother to see this...?
    You are devastated that Mary must suffer this,
    but consoled by her loving glance.
    Mary is the perfect symbol
    of the Father's mercy and tenderness.
    For thirty-three years Mary has known
    you would be the suffering servant of Isaiah.
    Simeon kept fresh in her mind
    the wound her heart would this day suffer.
    Now the sword pierces surely, deeply,
    as she gazes on you, her disfigured Son.
    As we travel along this disciple's road,
    struggling to bear our own heavy load,
    remind us to look to Mary as our own mother,
    for comfort, consolation, encouragement;
    not for her to lift our cross,
    but to sweeten it with a mother's love.

Were you there when they forced a stranger's help?


Priest:    We adore you O Christ and we praise you.
All:    (Genuflecting) Because by your holy cross
    you have redeemed the world.

Priest:    I was hungry and you gave me food,
        thirsty and you gave me drink...
        sick and you visited me...
        Whatsoever you did
        for the least of my brothers
        you did for me" (Mt 25:35, 36, 40).

All:    Simon, drawn by the noisy crowd,
    complains at having to share your burden:
    "Why should I share in the cross of a criminal?"
    Then something happens to change his heart.
    Do you show him God himself
    in your blood-stained eyes?
    Yes, and then,
    the cross could not be torn from him.

    Gentle Lord, help us to see your heart
    within the least of your brothers
    when we are tempted to ask ourselves
    "Why should I clothe, shelter,
    feed, give drink to the poor?...
    Why visit the sick, imprisoned?...
    Why show respect for the dead,
    their loved ones?
    Why protect the unborn, the aged, oppressed?

    Lord, help us to see it is you we serve
    in all these your brothers and sisters in need,
    as we live out our noble call to discipleship.

Were you there when the woman wiped his face?


Priest:    We adore you O Christ and we praise you.
All:    (Genuflecting) Because by your holy cross
    you have redeemed the world.

Priest:    Praised be the God and Father
        of Our Lord Jesus Christ,
        The Father of mercies
        and the God of all consolation.
        He comforts us in all our afflictions
        and thus enables us to comfort
        those who are in trouble with
        the same consolation
        we have received from him (2 Cor 1:3, 4).

All:    Veronica comes to wipe
    your blood-stained face.
    Never to be outdone in generosity,
    you leave the imprint of your face on her veil.

    Help us to see that same face as today we
    comfort those in sorrow,
    counsel those who doubt the faith,
    confront sinners, gently, firmly,
    teach others your way;
    while we patiently bear injustices received,
    forgive all injuries,
    and pray for those living and dead.

    And, when we have done these things for you,
    impress your image on our souls
    that we, your disciples,
    might go forth and show your face
    to the world.

Were you there when he fell a second time?


Priest:    We adore you O Christ and we praise you.
All:    (Genuflecting) Because by your holy cross
    you have redeemed the world.

Priest:    Come to me, you who are weary
        and find life burdensome,
        and I will give you rest...
        for my yoke is easy, and my burden light.
                                   (Mt 11:28, 30)

All:    Even with Simon's help
    your cross weighs heavily
    on your bleeding shoulder,
    worn raw by the beam.
    The soldiers kick and whip and spit upon you.
    How much humiliation will you bear for us?
    As we fall repeatedly into sin
    beneath our same recurring weaknesses,
    anger, pride, laziness, self-indulgence,
    may your perseverance in your falls
    turn our discouragement into hope,
    our back-sliding into resolve,
    and our weakness into strength,
    that we might rise again
    by your life within us,
    to live in and for you.
    Help us to remember that discipleship
    is not perfection, but perseverance;
    and that the difference
    between a saint and sinner is:
    a saint is a sinner who never stopped trying.

Were you there when the women wept for him?


Priest:    We adore you O Christ and we praise you.
All:    (Genuflecting) Because by your holy cross
    you have redeemed the world.

Priest:    O Jerusalem, Jerusalem,
        killing the prophets
        and stoning those sent to you!
        How often would I have gathered
        your children
        as a hen gathers her young
        beneath her wings,
        and you would not!(Lk 13:34,35).

All:    The Jerusalem women weep at your suffering,
    yet you turn their concern to their children;
    to look beyond your suffering
    to the sin which caused it:
    your rejection by man.
    These well-meaning women, do they symbolize
    those who try to ease the suffering and misery
    of our world, but care little about
    the sin behind that suffering?
    Inspire us to work for the liberation of souls
    from the bondage of sin and selfishness
    as the primary way to alleviate world suffering.
    And may we never try to solve
    the ills of this world
    merely by social action, but rather,
    pray as if everything depends on God,
    and work as if everything depends on us.

    As disciples may we weep not so much for you
    as for those who have rejected you.

Were you there when a third time he fell down?


Priest:    We adore you O Christ and we praise you.
All:    (Genuflecting) Because by your holy cross
    you have redeemed the world.

Priest:    Rejoice in your hope,
        be patient under trial,
        persevere in prayer (Rom 12:12).

All:    You lift your eyes momentarily from the road
    to see the top of Calvary,
    and, tripping on a rock, you fall again.
    You were so close, yet now you are
    so many kicks, so many insults,
    so many scourges from your goal.

    How easy for us,
    once we have travelled with you for a time
    to turn our eyes
    from the road which got us here:
    prayer and sacrifice;
    and to see our progress in the spiritual life
    as the result of our own efforts.

    If we do, Lord, bring us down,
    that we might remember your words:
    "I am the vine, you are the branches.
    He who lives in me and I in him
    will produce abundantly,
    ...apart from me you can do nothing" (Jn 15:5).

    May we see every fall
    as your precious invitation
    to draw us back to humble, prayerful     discipleship.

Were you there when they stripped him of his clothes?


Priest:    We adore you O Christ and we praise you.
All:    (Genuflecting) Because by your holy cross
    you have redeemed the world.

Priest:    Though he was in the form of God,
        Jesus did not deem equality with God
        something to cling to.
        Rather he emptied himself
        and took the form of a slave,
        being born in the likeness of men.
        He was known to be of human estate,
        thus humbling himself,
        becoming obedient even onto death,
        death on a cross! (Phil 2:6-8)

All:    As you were willing
    to be stripped of your clothes
    so may we be willing to be stripped
    of our honors, our accomplishments,
    our possessions, even our wills.
    Fill us with the spirit of St Francis,
    that we might see ourselves as
    the servant of everyone we meet,
    that we might seek the last place in all things,
    and we might live
    the simplicity of Lady Poverty,
    for love of you.
    Make us indifferent
    to all that this world has to offer,
    so as to be living witnesses to the world that,
    for your disciples, you are enough.

Were you there when they nailed him to the cross?


Priest:    We adore you O Christ and we praise you.
All:    (Genuflecting) Because by your holy cross
    you have redeemed the world.

Priest:    I tell you solemnly:
        as a young man you fastened your belt
        and went about as you pleased;
        but when you are older
        you will stretch out your hands,
        and another will tie you fast
        and take you
        where you do not wish to go (Jn 21:18).

All:    They nail you hands and feet to the cross,
    to the instrument of our salvation,
    the instrument of your Messianic fulfillment.
    This is the paradox of the Christian life:
    by surrendering our freedom,
    by binding ourselves to you,
    we become free from sin, selfishness, error,
    free to be fulfilled in your enduring love.
    May the sight of you being bound to the cross,
    your "glory" (Jn 12:23),
    inspire us to see the glory
    of our own commitments:
    to meditative prayer, to a sacramental life,
    to Sunday worship;
    to marriage or religious vows,
    to children, to friends,
    to a life of virtue,
    ...to the sweet bondage of discipleship.

Were you there when he bowed his head and died?


Priest:    We adore you O Christ and we praise you.
All:    (Genuflecting) Because by your holy cross
    you have redeemed the world.

Priest:    One of the criminals... blasphemed him...
        But the other rebuked the first:
        "Have you no fear of God...
        We deserve it, after all...
        Jesus, remember me in your kingdom."
        "...this day you will be... in paradise."
                                   (Lk 23:39-43)
        Jesus, seeing his mother there
        with the disciple he loved... said to him,
        "Behold your mother." (Jn 19:26, 27).

        Then, Jesus uttered a loud cry and said,
        "Father, into your hands
        I commend my spirit."
        And, having said this, he expired.
                              (Lk 23:46)

    [All kneel for a moment of silent prayer.]

All:    We have seen the two responses to suffering:
    blasphemous complaining,
    or penitent prayer for mercy.
    May our response be the latter, that of Dismas:
    to gaze upon your crucified body,
    to forget our own suffering, confess our sins,
    and receive your pardon, peace, and hope.

    And, may we, as your "beloved disciples,"
    heed your dying request: "Behold your mother,"
    that by Mary's guidance, example and prayers,
    we too might come to say--now, and in death--    "Father, into your hands I commend my spirit."

Were you there when they took him from the cross?


Priest:    We adore you O Christ and we praise you.
All:    (Genuflecting) Because by your holy cross
    you have redeemed the world.

Priest:    I say to you, my friends,
        do not fear those who kill the body
        and can do no more...
        Fear him who has power to cast into hell
        once he has killed...
        ...whoever acknowledges me before men,
        the Son of Man will acknowledge
        before the angels of God.
        But he who disowns me before men
        will be disowned
        before the angels of God.
                (Lk 12:4, 5, 8, 9)

All:    Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus,
    inspired by your crucifixion and death
    to put aside their fear of the Jews,
    now give public witness to their love for you.
    They place your body
    in the arms of your mother weeping--
    not tears of devastation,
    but tears like the gentle shower after a storm,
    anticipating the blossoming of new life.
    May the sight of your limp body,
    totally spent for us,
    unlock the courage in our hearts
    to ignore all human respect
    and give bold witness
    to our discipleship with you.

Were you there when they laid him in the tomb?


Priest:    We adore you O Christ and we praise you.
All:    (Genuflecting) Because by your holy cross
    you have redeemed the world.

Priest:    I solemnly assure you,
        unless a grain of wheat
        falls to the earth and dies,
        it remains just a grain.
        But if it dies, it bears much fruit.
        The one who loves his life loses it,
        and the one who hates his life
        in this world
        will preserve it into eternal life.
                       (Jn 12:24, 25).

All:    This grain of wheat, you, Lord, have died.
    Your body is placed in the earth,
    soon to bear magnificent fruit.
    We too must die if we would bear fruit:
    die to our self-indulgence;
    die to living merely by feelings,
    rather than by reason informed by faith;
    die even to our own wills,
    so as to live the virtue this world hates:
    Obedience to you, your Church, our superiors.
    As disciples, intent on bearing fruit,
    may we so bury our wills in yours
    to be able to say joyfully, easily, promptly,
    in all things,
    "Thy will be done."

Were you there when he rose up from the dead?


Priest:    Then I saw new heavens
        and a new earth;
        the former heavens and the former earth
        had passed away...
        And I saw the holy city, a new Jerusalem,
        coming down out of heaven from God,
        adorned as a bride,
        prepared to meet her husband.
                    (Rv 21:1, 2)

All:    As the many grains of wheat are crushed
    yet come to life in the Eucharist,
    so you Lord, crushed for our sins,
    come to life in the resurrection.
    In your Easter victory
    you bring joy from sorrow,
    success from failure,
    victory from defeat,
    Life from death,
    endured for you.
    May we never separate
    the cross from the resurrection;
    and may we never forget
    the joy of the New Jerusalem
    toward which we journey in this valley of tears,
    where we will be no longer just your disciples,
    but your spouse
    in an eternal marriage with our God.


After the 14th station, priest* exposes the Blessed Sacrament and the exposition hymn is begun. Incensation takes place during the hymn.


    O salutaris Hostia
    Quae caeli pandis ostium:
    Bella Premunt hostilia,
    Da robur, fer auxilium.

    Uni trinoque Domino
    Sit sempiterna gloria
    Qui vitam sine termino
    Nobis donet in patria. Amen.

    (English version)

    O saving Victim op'ning wide
    The gate of heaven to us below!
    Our foes press on from every side.
    Your aid supply, your strength bestow.

    To your great name be endless praise.
    Immortal Godhead, one in three.
    O grant us endless length of days
    in our true native land with thee.

During exposition priest* reads passage from Scripture on Resurrection as given above or from latter part of one of the gospels. Priest* gives short homily on Resurrection relating it to the Eucharistic Lord on the altar.

*priest or deacon    BENEDICTION HYMN

    Tantum Ergo Sacramentum
    Veneremur cernui
    Et antiquum documentum
    Novo cedat ritui;
    Praestet fides supplementum
    Sensuum defectui

    Genitori Genitoque
    Laus et Jubilatio
    Salus, honor, virtus quoque
    Sit et benedictio:
    Procedenti ab utroque
    Compar sit laudatio. Amen.


    Bowing low, then offer homage
    To a Sacrament so great.
    Here is new and perfect worship;
    All the old must terminate.
    Senses cannot grasp this marvel
    Faith must serve to compensate

    Praise and glorify the Father,
    Bless his Son's life-giving name,
    Singing their eternal Godhead,
    Power, majesty and fame,
    Offering their Holy Spirit
    Equal worship and acclaim. Amen.

Priest*: you have given them Bread from heaven.
All:    Having within it all sweetness.

*priest or deacon    PRAYER

Priest*: Let us pray. Lord Jesus Christ, you gave us the Eucharist as the memorial of your suffering and death. May our worship of this sacrament of your body and blood help us to experience the salvation you won for us and the peace of the kingdom where you live with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.  Amen.


Blessed be God.
Blessed be his holy name.
Blessed be Jesus Christ, true God and true man.
Blessed be the name of Jesus.
Blessed be his most Sacred Heart.
Blessed be his most precious blood.
Blessed be Jesus in the most holy Sacrament of the altar.
Blessed be the Holy Spirit, the Paraclete.
Blessed be the great Mother of God, Mary most holy.
Blessed be her holy and immaculate conception.
Blessed be her glorious assumption.
Blessed be the name of Mary, virgin and mother.
Blessed be St. Joseph, her most chaste spouse.
Blessed be God in his angels and his saints.

May the Heart of Jesus/ in the most Blessed Sacrament/ be praised, adored and loved/ with grateful affection/ at every moment/ in all the tabernacles of the world/ even until the end of time.  Amen.

(Priest* gives benediction. Sacrament is reposed and closing hymn sung)

*priest or deaconBy the same author:

    (Meditations on the mysteries of the rosary using
    Sacred Scripture and the visions of mystics)



    Inquire at address below



    English text for benediction hymns
    cO 1965, 1977 Order of St. Benedict, Inc.
    Published by Liturgical Press, Collegeville, MN

    The basis for the scriptural quotes is the New American Bible cO 1970 by the Confraternity of Christian Doctrine.


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