The Story Behind the Stations
The ancient practice called The Stations of the Cross began in the 1500s, when small shrines were set up as visual reminders of the path Jesus took to the cross and some of the moments he experienced along the way. These "stations" eventually found their way into churches and onto streets far away.
When we follow this practice and take this journey, it’s not just for remembering what was, but as David Bjorlin tells us, it's "anamnesis" - a way to bring the events of the past into our lives now, looking at them through the lens of the present moment and making them part of our own story and the story of our world today.
The journey through the stations is one of grief and loss, of agonies and humiliations. It is a story about being in the middle of the worst of it, with no Easter Sunday in sight, with no inkling that resurrection, restoration, new birth, new life is ever going to happen.
It is the story of Jesus, but it is also the story of so many on our planet who are experiencing grief and loss, so many who are betrayed and beaten, forced to carry too much, shamed, lynched and killed. Perhaps it is also the story of our planet itself, as climate change continues to decimate it on a daily basis.
As you walk this ancient path in the middle of the world we live in right now, perhaps it will help you remember how Jesus walks right into the pain and suffering of the world and walks through it all with us. Perhaps this journey will inspire you to a deeper compassion and sense of solidarity.
Perhaps it will inspire you to walk with all who suffer as well.
And maybe when you reflect, lament, confess and pray at each of these stations you will remember no matter how abandoned, undone and grief-stricken you may feel, you are not alone.
The art featured at each station was created by Dan Callis. STATIONS: RESURGAM is a collection of work that explores grief and lament, drawing on historic liturgical practices of Western Christian and Moroccan Islam. According to Callis, “the works in this exhibition serve as a prayer offering and an attempt to chart the unchartable. They are about pain and the absurd insistent pursuit of hope.”
You can read more about Dan and this artwork here.
The music to accompany you on this journey is offered by The Many, a creative collective making music and new kinds of inclusive, justice-building gatherings that offer space for faith and doubt, lament and gratitude.
You can read more about The Many here.