I just learned recently that none of the disciples were present during the crucifixion. I find this startling. Is this really true? Any rational explanation? Were they kept away by centurions?
When Jesus stopped the Apostles from fighting in His defense after St. Peter cut a man’s ear off, they did what most of us men tend to do in such a situation, they fled. They were terrified that they might be crucified as well. Scripture suggests that they were aware of what transpired. They probably watched the passion from a safe distance. St. John, however, was with our Blessed Mother at the foot of the cross as described in John 19:26-27.
Fr. Vincent Serpa, O.P.