Stations of the Cross in Your Parish

+JMJ+

My daugther and I came back from Stations of the Cross tonight. There were only 10 to 12 people there! The parish has a few thousand members. Father couldn’t get altar servers to make the Way of the Cross with him and without altar servers he could not do Benediction afterwards. I remember this being the greatest part of Lent as a child. :frowning: How goes it in your parishes?

we have Rosary Monday & Wed in Lent, Holy Hours ending with Benediction on Thursday, and Stations on Friday bilingual. All are lay led, except if Father cannot expose blessed Sacrament on Thursday, Deacon does it. Of course only Father does Benediction on Thursday, if he can’t make it we don’t have it. Altar boys are not present on any of those occassions. If a server or deacon is not present, gentleman from congregation usually a lector helps. Sacristan lites candles and gets whatever else is needed. Father feels that since Benediction is not part of Stations or Rosary we don’t do it then.

We as laymen had to volunteer to plan and lead the Stations else we would not have them at all. We are lucky when we get 25 people to attend. I know Friday evenings can be busy, but sheesh!

[quote=drforjc]We as laymen had to volunteer to plan and lead the Stations else we would not have them at all. We are lucky when we get 25 people to attend. I know Friday evenings can be busy, but sheesh!
[/quote]

My parish in South Boston is the Gate of Heaven, a cathedral size Church capable of holding a few thousand, and it was packed every Sunday when I was a kid in the early to mid 60s. Now we’re lucky to get the first few benches filled. The Archdiocese has declared my Church officially to be “underutilized” and slated for closure. :frowning:

So now I go to the St. Anthony’s Shrine in Downtown Boston as often as possible (they have a Mass five times a day, seven days a week) where it is packed, mostly because of the Stations of the Cross as presented by the Franciscan Friars (OFM).

Point: A properly done Stations of the Cross could be a big draw to your Church.

[quote=Kevin Walker]My parish in South Boston is the Gate of Heaven, a cathedral size Church capable of holding a few thousand, and it was packed every Sunday when I was a kid in the early to mid 60s. Now we’re lucky to get the first few benches filled. The Archdiocese has declared my Church officially to be “underutilized” and slated for closure. :frowning:

So now I go to the St. Anthony’s Shrine in Downtown Boston as often as possible (they have a Mass five times a day, seven days a week) where it is packed, mostly because of the Stations of the Cross as presented by the Franciscan Friars (OFM).

Point: A properly done Stations of the Cross could be a big draw to your Church.
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It is not that it is not properly done. It is that hardly any one is interested in attending anymore. I checked with a friend of mine who attends the other Ctaholic church in town and she said they hardly ever have anyone attend either. Her pastor said that they would still do it though even if only one praishoner was there.

found that most of kids in CCD have never heard of or participated in Stations of the Cross so we made it the basis of our Lenten retreats for each age group, starting last year. Junior High prays the Stations together, then in small groups makes posters to illustrate each station, which are hung in the Hall. Elementary grades take turns leading the prayers, so that each class gets a chance to process, and we have restored the old practice of singing during the procession from station to station. Then at another session they watch a video presentation of the stations with a priest preaching on each one in between.

High school prays the stations together, taking turns leading the prayers and songs, using a prepared devotional guide. As they pray, a video (no sound) of the Passion from Jesus of Nazareth is running (since we cannot access the Church at that time). Then they work in groups to prepared their own meditations to each station, with illustrations, which are then used by other groups. We did this for the parish (mostly parents) and it was very well done, and very favorably received.

[quote=maryprayforme]+JMJ+

.without altar servers he could not do Benediction afterwards.QUOTE]

There is no need for altar servers for benediction. We never have them for our service on Sunday afternoon, and I have seen deacons manage without also.
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Thank God! Our small town Parish has about 1000 families, and the first Friday Stations of the Cross was almost SRO - around 200 people there. Last Friday there were not quite as many, but still more than 100 people - the altar servers were men from the Parish, K of C, etc. We went early to get a pew up front…

After, we have soup and sandwiches in the Parish Hall, it is like a big family event!

Out of a parish of around 600, we average about 35 people at the Stations. :frowning:

We might get more to come if Father would attend, but he is quick to point out that Fridays are HIS DAY OFF. :frowning: :mad: Lay people do all the work and they do a fantastic job, but what we really need is the “head man” to show up at least for some of them.

[quote=mkw]Out of a parish of around 600, we average about 35 people at the Stations. :frowning:

We might get more to come if Father would attend, but he is quick to point out that Fridays are HIS DAY OFF. :frowning: :mad: Lay people do all the work and they do a fantastic job, but what we really need is the “head man” to show up at least for some of them.
[/quote]

Forgive my ignorance but I’m a new Catholic and still learning. Do all diocesan priests have a day off? Assuming they do, which seems only right to me since we are all commanded to rest one day a week, why would you want to deprive him of his day off?

I pray that we will all love, support and pray for our priests more. I have developed such a tremendous respect for my pastor and am awed and gratified at the responsibilities he has willingly taken on to serve us all. Perhaps a bit more gratitude might be in order and a little less criticism…
In His love,
Rhonda

Yes…Priests get one day a week and usually 2 weeks during the year. And I agree, they NEED IT!

I see the point you made concerning his need for a little time off. I guess I forget sometimes the amount of work he does in the parish just keeping it running. Thank you for the reminder… :wink: :o

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