The New Way of the Cross in the Augustinian Tradition

INTRODUCTION

You are walking in Chris, who said I am the way. Learn how you should walk in him not only from his words but also from his example...

So he was handed over, the Most High through whom all things were made, handed over, thanks to the form of a servant, to be abused by men, cast aside by the people, to be ridiculed, to be scourged, to die on the cross; in this way he taught us by the example of his sufferings with what patience we must walk in him; and by the example of his resurrection he assured us of what we should be patiently hoping for from him.

Let us pray (All): Chris, God, my hope, sweet lover of humanity, light, way, salvation, peace, and glory of all who are yours, for whose salvation you willed to bear all things: flesh, bonds, cross, wound, death and burial. You conquered death and after three days rose, were seen by your disciples and restored wavering hearts. After forty days you ascended to the heights of heaven, where you live forever, ruling now and through all ages.

I pray, beg, and beseech you: let me walk by your power and come to you and rest in you who are the way, the truth and the life, and apart from whom no one comes to the Father. For my desire is you, sweet and lovely Lord. (Meditations of St. Augustine 18)

AMEN.

RESPONSORY Saint Thomas of Villanova, OSA Sermon of Good Friday. 1, 10

Behold the cross, which is the altar where the most pleasing sacrifice was offered to God for the living and the dead.

- He who hung on it offered himself for all, for those living by grace and for those dead through sin.

SONG: THE WAY OF THE CROSS (Fr. Manoling Francisco, SJ)/p>

REF. We carry the saving cross through the roads of the world. Through the alleys of poverty and misery, marching to a dawning day, to freedom and victory, to God's life and endless glory.

Santo Cristo

We adore you O Christ, and we bless you.

- Because by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.

From the First Letter of Paul to the Corinthians 1Cor 11:23-26

For I received from the Lord what I also handed on to you, that the Lord Jesus, on the night he was handed over, took bread, and, after he had given thanks, broke it and said, "This is my body that is for you. Do this in remembrance of me." In the same way also the cup, after supper, saying, "This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me." For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the death of the Lord until he comes.

Reflections from a Sermon of Saint Augustine Sermon 2288, 2

Christ out Lord, who suffered by suffering for us what by being born he had received from us, has become our high priest forever, and has given us the order of sacrifice which you can see, of his body, that is to say, and his blood. When his body, remember, was pierced by the lance, it poured forth the water and the blood by which he cancelled our sins. Be mindful of this grace as you work out your salvation, since it is God who is at work in you, and approach with fear and trembling to partake the altar. Recognize in the bread what hung on the cross and in the cup what flowed from his side.

RESPONSORY Saint Augustine, Sermon 131, 1

"Unless you eat my flesh and drink my blood, you shall not have life in you," says the Lord. Eat life--drink life. You will then have life, and life is complete.

- Then the Body and Blood of Christ will be life for each person, under this condition: what is eaten visibly in the Sacrament be spiritually eaten and spiritually drunk in truth itself.

SONG: Christ, bread of life, the self-giving Lord of all, he leads the way of the cross. REF.

We adore you O Christ, and we bless you.

- Because by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.

A Reading from the Gospel according to Luke (Lk 22:39-45)

Then going out he went, as was his custom, to the Mount of Olives, and the disciples followed him. When he arrived at the place he said to them, "Pray that you may not undergo the test." After withdrawing about a stone's throw from them and kneeling, he prayed, saying, "Father, if you are willing, take this cup away from me; still, not my will but yours be done." And to strengthen him an angel from heaven appeared to him. He was in such agony and he prayed so fervently that his sweat became like drops of blood falling on the ground. When he rose from prayer and returned to his disciples, he found them sleeping from grief.

Reflections from a Sermon of Saint Augustine Sermon 160,5

As Christ was at the point of drinking the cup of humiliation, and transferring to himself our weakness, he said to the Father, Father, if it can be done, let this cup pass from me. So here, transferring and associating with himself these two in particular, who were not intending to drink such a cup, and were always aiming at the heights, while neglecting the way there of humiliation, Can you drink, he says, the cup which I am going to drink? You are aiming at Christ exalted on high; come back to him crucified on the cross. You want to reign and take pride in the thrones of Christ; first learn to say Far be it from me to take pride in anything but in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ..

RESPONSORY Saint Augustine, Commentary on Psalm 22

Even though the man Christ Jesus, in the together with the Father with whom he accepts our sacrifice.

- Nonetheless he has chosen in the form of a servant to be the sacrifice rather than to accept it.

SONG:Christ, sent by God, obedient to the Father's will, he leads the way of the cross. REF.

We adore you O Christ, and we bless you.

- Because by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.

A Reading from the Gospel according to Mark (Mk 14:60-64)

The high priest rose before the assembly and questioned Jesus, saying, "Have you no answer? What are these men testifying against you?" But he was silent and answered nothing. Again the high priest asked him and said to him, "Are you the Messiah, the son of the Blessed One?" Then Jesus answered, "I am; and 'you will see the Son of Man seated at the right hand of the Power and coming with the clouds of heaven." At that the high priest tore his garments and said, "What further need have we of witnesses? You have heard the blasphemy. What do you think?" They all condemned him as deserving to die.

Reflections from a Sermon of Saint Augustine Sermon 334,2

Desire and long for the life of Christ that has been granted you; and until you get there, hold on to the death of Christ as your guarantee. He couldn't, after all, have given us a greater guarantee, when he promised he was going to live with us, than to die for us. "I have borne," he says "your evils; will I not pay you back my good things?" He promised, he made a promissory note, he gave us a pledge; and you are still hesitant about trusting him? (...) It is to his pledge that you say "Amen" every day. You have received his pledge offered you every day. You really needn't despair, you that are living on the pledge.

RESPONSORY Saint Augustine, Sermon 306, 2

We must look upon the mystery of death with the eyes of faith so that we shall believe what we do not see

- and shall bear with fortitude the evils to which we are unjustly subjected.

SONG:Christ, Truth and life, condemned by falsehood, he leads the way of the cross.REF.

We adore you O Christ, and we bless you.

- Because by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.

A Reading from the Gospel according to Matthew (Matt 27:22-30)

Pilate said to them, "Then what shall I do with Jesus called Messiah?" They all said, "Let him be crucified!" But he said, "Why? What evil has he done?" They only shouted the louder, "Let him be crucified!" When Pilate saw that he was not succeeding at all, but that a riot was breaking out instead, he took water and washed his hands in the sight of the crowd, saying, "I am innocent of this man's blood. Look to it yourselves." And the whole people said in reply, "His blood be upon us and upon our children." Then he released Barabbas to them, but after he had Jesus scourged, he handed him over to be crucified. Then the soldiers of the governor took Jesus inside the praetorium and gathered the whole cohort around him. They stripped off his clothes and threw a scarlet military cloak about him. Weaving a crown out of thorns, they placed it on his head, and a reed in his right hand. And kneeling before him, they mocked him, saying, "Hail, King of the Jews!" They spat upon him and took the reed and kept striking him on the head.

A Reflection from the Dolorous Passion of Our Lord Jesus Christ by Bl. Anne Catherine Emmerich, Augustinian Canoness Chs. 22 and 26

Our loving Lord, the Son of God, true God and true Man, writhed as a worm under the blows of these barbarians; his mild but deep groans might be heard from resounded through the air, as a kind accompaniment to the hissing of the instruments of torture. These groans resembled rather a cry of prayer and supplication, than moans of anguish… [Afterwards], they tore off the garments of Jesus, thereby reopening all his threw over his shoulders an old scarlet mantle which barely reached his knees; dragged him to the seat prepared pushed him roughly down upon it, having first placed a crown of thorns upon his head. The crown of thorns was made of three branches plaited together, the greatest part of the thorn being purposely turned inwards so as to pierce our Lord's head.

RESPONSORY Saint Augustine, Commentary on Psalm 21, 23

Christ, Son of God, if you had not wished to suffer, You would not have suffered.

- Show us the fruit of your passion.

SONG:Christ, of the poor, condemned though innocent, he leads the way of the cross.REF.

We adore you O Christ, and we bless you.

- Because by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.

A Reading from the Gospel according to John (Jn 19:16-17)

Then (Pontius Pilate) handed him over to them to be crucified. So they took Jesus, and carrying the cross himself he went out to what is called the Place of the Skull, in Hebrew, Golgotha.

Reflections from a Sermon of Saint Augustine Sermon 218

And first, that when he was handed over to be crucified, he himself carried the cross: by this he gave us a sign of self-restraint, and by going ahead like that showed what should be done by anyone who wishes to follow him. He also impressed this upon us by word, when he said, Let anyone who loves me take up his cross and follow me." You see, you take up your cross after a fashion, when you control your mortality.

RESPONSORY Saint Augustine, Sermon 96, 9

Let them take up their cross, that is, put up with all the affronts of the world for the love of Christ. Persist, persevere, endure, bear up under the delay.

- In this way you will bear your cross.

SONG:Christ, Redeemer, crowned with piercing thorns, he leads the way of the cross.REF.

We adore you O Christ, and we bless you.

- Because by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.

A Reading from the Book of the Prophet Isaiah (Is 53:4-5)

Yet it was our infirmities that he bore, our sufferings that he endured, while we thought of him as stricken, as one smitten by God and afflicted. But he was pierced for our offenses, crushed for our sins, upon him was the chastisement that makes us whole; by his stripes we were healed.

Reflections from a Sermon of Saint Augustine Sermon 96, 4

Let him bear with whatever is troublesome; let him follow me like that. You see, when he begins to follow me in his manner of life and by keeping my commands, he will find many people speaking against him, many telling him to stop, many trying to dissuade him, and among them apparent companions of Christ. They were walking with Christ, those people who tried to stop the blind man crying out. So whether it's threats or enticements, or any kind of attempts to stop you, if you want to follow him, turn them into your cross; endure it, carry it, don't collapse under it.

RESPONSORY Saint Augustine, Commentary on Psalm 129, 3

Lord, in case I would falter, You gave me a remedy through Your admonishments.

- You establish the law of forgiveness, so that as I forgive. I may be forgiven

SONG:Christ, Victor, through the saving cross, he leads the way of the cross.REF.

We adore you O Christ, and we bless you.

- Because by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.

A Reading from the Gospel according to Mark (Mk15-21)

They pressed into service a passer-by, Simon Cyrenian, who was coming in from the country, the father of Alexander and Rufus, to carry his cross.

Reflections from the Sermon III of Saint Thomas of Villanova on Friday after the Passion Sunday

These are the three signs of spiritual life, namely, love of heavenly things, control of the body, and exercise of the virtues. But because this seems too hard to discern, for often the soul has already been freed from sin, and yet the body is still so oppressed by bad habits that it can hardly be carried... In this way you take [it up) when you carry the ardor of sin on your shoulders, that is, when do penance. This is to help Christ bear his cross with Simon, for Christ carried our iniquities, and these sins were heavier to him than the cross. Be merciful, then, and help him carry our own burdensome sins, doing your part through penance. In the psalms, he himself said: Sinners have built on my back (Ps 129:3), for every sin is placed on Christ's back.

RESPONSORY Saint Augustine, Eighty-three Diverse Questions, 71,7

Now this is the law of Christ, that we carry one another's burdens mutually.

- When we love Christ, it is easy to put up with the weakness of others, even when we do not yet love them for their good qualities.

SONG:Christ, humble servant, aided by Simon, he leads the way of the cross.REF.

We adore you O Christ, and we bless you.

- Because by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.

A Reading from the Gospel according to Luke (Lk 23:27-31)

A large crowd of people followed Jesus, including many women who mourned and lamented him. Jesus turned to them and said, "Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for me; weep instead for yourselves and for your children, for indeed, the days are coming when people will say, 'Blessed are the barren, the wombs that never bore and the breasts that never nursed. At that time people will say to the mountains, 'Fall upon us!' and to the hills, 'Cover us!' for if these things are done when the wood is green what will happen when it is dry?"

Reflections from the Sermon IV of Saint Thomas of Villanova on Friday after the Third Sunday of Lent

As a wife weeps for her dead husband, so the soul mourns when it loses Christ through sin. Behold the sorrow of new wives weeping for their dead husbands... If mothers weep bitterly for their sons, and wives for their husbands, whom they cannot bring back to life, why would a person not weep for his soul, which he can resuscitate with tears? At the death of the body it is stoic to abstain from tears; at the death of the soul it is most beneficial not to abstain from tears: Let your tears flow like a river..., give yourself no rest, nor let the pupil of your eye keep still (Lam 2:18), let your eye not rest.

RESPONSORY Saint Augustine, Confessions IV, 5, 10

Let me listen to you now who are truth; bring the ear of my heart close to your mouth,

- that you may tell me why weeping is a relief to the wretched.

SONG:Christ, our healer, consoler of those who grieved, he leads the way of the cross.REF.

We adore you O Christ, and we bless you.

- Because by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.

A Reading from the Gospel according to Luke (Lk 23:33-35)

When they came to the place called the Skull, they crucified him and the criminals there, one on his right, the other on his left. (Then Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, they know not what they do.”) They divided his garments by casting lots. The people stood by and watched; the rules, meanwhile sneered at him and said, “He saved others, let him save himself if he is the chosen one, the Messiah of God.”

Reflections from a Sermon of Saint Augustine Sermon 205, 1

Flesh means the desire of our lower nature; nails signify the demands of God's justice and holiness. With these the fear of the Lord pierces our flesh and fastens us to the cross is an acceptable sacrifice to Him.

In a similar passage Paul the Apostle appeals to us by the mercy of God to offer our bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God.

RESPONSORY Saint Augustine, Sermon 27, 6

Christ's deformity is what gives form to you. If he had been unwilling to be deformed, you would never have gotten back the form you lost.

- So he hung on the cross, deformed, but his deformity was our beauty.

SONG:Christ, Son of David, stripped of his glory, he leads the way of the cross.REF.

We adore you O Christ, and we bless you.

- Because by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.

A Reading from the Gospel according to Luke (Lk 23:39-43)

Now one of the criminals hanging there reviled Jesus, saying, “Are you not the Messiah? Save yourself and us.” The other, however, rebuking him, said in reply. “Have you no fear of God, for you are subject to the same condemnation? And indeed, we have been condemned justly, for the sentence we received corresponds to our crimes, but this man has done nothing criminal.” Then he said, “Jesus remember me when you come into your kingdom.” He replied to him, “Amen, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise.”

Reflections from the Expositions on the Psalms by Saint Augustine Enn in Os. 40, 15

Look at the thief who, hanging on the cross with the Lord, did on the cross acknowledge the Lord. Others had refused to acknowledge him while working miracles; this man acknowledged him when hanging on the cross. That thief had every other member pierced through; his hands were fastened by the nails; his feet were pierced through; his hands were fastened by the nails; his feet were pierced also his whole body was fastened to the tree; the body was not disengaged in its other members; the heart and the tongue were disengaged; with the heart he believed; with the tongue he made confession. Remember me, O Lord, he said, when you come into your kingdom. He hoped for the coming of his salvation at a time far remote; he was content to receive it after a long delay; his hope rested on an object far remote. The day, however, was not postponed! His words were, Remember me when you come into your kingdom. The answer was This day, you shall be with me in paradise. Paradise has happy trees! This day you have been with me on the tree of the cross. That day you shall be with me on the tree of salvation.

RESPONSORY Thomas Villanova, Fifth Sunday after Easter, 15

Guide our heart by your pleasure, by your will,

- and then your kingdom comes to us.

SONG:Christ, Good Shepherd, on the cross crucified, he leads the way of the cross.REF.

We adore you O Christ, and we bless you.

- Because by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.

A Reading from the Gospel according to John (Jn 19:25-27)

Standing by the cross of Jesus were his mother and his mother's sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary of Magdala. When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple there whom he loved, he said to his mother, “Woman, behold, your son,” Then he said to the disciple, “Behold, your mother.” And from that hour the disciple took her into his home.”

Reflections from the work on the Gospels by Bl. Simon of Cascia Bk 4, Ch 13

From that moment when Jesus gave his own mother to John, or rather, gave him a mother, the disciple reverently and submissively accepted the Virgin Mother as his own. It was not natural love but her special compassion that led the Virgin Mary to accept the son of Zebedee as her own in God's sight. Let no one say that in place of Christ who was dying she took John as her son in a kind of exchange. For Christ did not deny that he was now the son of the Virgin Mary, Moreover, she believed and was firmly convinced of his resurrection on the third day. There was therefore no need of such an exchange.

Nor had the Virgin Mary so lost her sense that she did not know and understand these mysteries. Christ did not tell his mother, This is your son, because he was dying in his humanity. Rather, as the living and true God according to his divinity, he spoke and acted in the light of a great and hidden mystery, in order that the virtue and grace might be bestowed on human nature and that ultimately the blessedness and glory of everlasting life might be given to it. So clear is it that these matters were the deliberate decision of Christ on the cross that we should not see and contemplate only the material wood and the figure on the cross but should contemplate and reflect devoutly on the mystery and invisible sacrament that had been hidden in ages past. Now the meaning of that past time is revealed to the lowly and those chosen for the glory of everlasting life.

RESPONSORY Saint Thomas of villanova, Easter Wednesday, 11

O blessed among women, who has merited such great height and dignity!

- We are all your children and you are our Lady, remember us

SONG:Christ, Son of Mary, immolated for all of us, he leads the way of the cross.REF.

We adore you O Christ, and we bless you.

- Because by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.

A Reading from the Gospel according to John (Jn 19:28-30)

After this, aware that everything was now finished, in order that the scripture might be fulfilled, Jesus said, "I thirst." There was a vessel filled with common wine. So they put a sponge soaked in wine on a sprig of hyssop and put it up to his mouth. When Jesus had taken the wine, he said, "It is finished." And bowing his head, he handed over the spirit.

(A considerable length of silence may be observed here.)

Reflections from a Sermon of Giles of Viterbo, OSA

By love, the supreme God reconciled the father with himself, considering them worthy of divine friendship, comforting and embracing them. To some, God revealed the future to some he gave the law. But he never rested until he sent down his own Son, whom he made mortal. He decreed that he should die a cruel and wretched death, nailed to a cross, so that enlightened mortals might understand for once just how great was the love of the supreme God. He gave his immortal Son to be killed in order that mortals might find life. Witness the extent to which love holds sway in heaven! One remembers only rarely when a person suffered death for another; nevertheless, no one doubts that people love. But divine love is so much greater that human love because it compels God to endure more things and more unworthy things for mortals that mortals are accustomed to endure for each other. In love he descended to us and in love we must ascend to him. In love he died and was cut off from the living that we might live, joined to that love.

RESPONSORY cf. Saint Augustine, Sermon 335 1,2

When we hear it said that he suffered for us, what do we love?

- It is the very love that we love. The fact that he loved us so much that we might love him in return.

SONG:Christ, Lamb of God, for us sinners crucified, he leads the way! of the cross.REF.

We adore you O Christ, and we bless you.

- Because by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.

A Reading from the Gospel according to Matthew (Matt 27:57-60)

When it was evening, there came a rich man from Arimathea named Joseph, who was himself a disciple of Jesus. He went to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus; then Pilate ordered it to be handed over. Taking the body. Joseph wrapped it (in) clean linen and laid it in his new tomb that he had hewn in the rock. Then he rolled a huge stone across the entrance to the tomb and departed.

Reflections from a Sermon of Saint Augustine Sermon 218

That Joseph and Nicodemus buried him: as some people have explained their names, Joseph means "increased;" while Nicodemus, being a Greek name, many will know that is a compound of "victory" and "people"... So, who was increased by dying, if not the one who said, If the grain of wheat does not die, it remains alone; but if it dies, it is multiplied? And who by his very dying won a victory over the people which was persecuting him, if not the one who by his rising will sit in judgment upon them?

RESPONSORY cf Saint Augustine, Enchiridion, 53

Because of his burial,

- we have been buried with him in death by the baptism unto death

SONG:Christ, our savior, in the tomb laid to rest, he leads the way of the cross. REF.

We adore you O Christ, and we bless you.

- Because by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.

A Reading from the Gospel according to Mark (Mk 16:1-8)

When the sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, Mary. the mother of James, and Salome bought spices so that they might go and anoint him. Very early when the sun had risen, on the first day of the week, they came to the tomb. They were saying to one another, "Who will roll back the stone for us from the entrance to the tomb?" When they looked up. they saw that the stone had been rolled back; it was very large. On entering the tomb they saw a young man sitting on the right side, clothed in a white robe, and they were utterly amazed. He said to them, "Do not be amazed! You seek Jesus of Nazareth, the crucified. He has been raised; he is not here. Behold the place where they laid him. But go and tell his disciples and Peter, 'He is going before you to Galilee; there you will see him, as he told you.” Then they went out and fled from the tomb, seized with trembling and bewilderment.

Reflections from a Sermon of Saint AugustineSermon 229H, 3

Our Lord Jesus Christ addressed us: "O humanity, why were you afraid of dying? Look, I die; look, I suffer, so there, you shouldn't fear what you were afraid of, because I am showing you what you what to hope for." There you are that’s exactly what he did; he gave us a demonstration of resurrection for eternity. The evangelists pinpointed it in their writings, the apostles proclaimed it throughout the world. It was because of their faith precisely in the resurrection that the holy martyrs were not afraid of – and yet they were afraid to die. They would more truly die were they to fear dying, and out of fear of death to deny Christ. Anyway, what does denying Christ mean, but denying life? What could be crazier than denying life by loving life?

So the resurrection of Christ is what determines and pinpoints our faith... This is what defines our faith, the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. You can live, provided you live; that is you can live forever, provided you live a good life. Don't be afraid of dying a bad death; be afraid indeed, but of living a bad life. What astonishing perversity! You are all afraid of what none of you can escape, and you don't do what you certainly can do. To avoid dying, you can do nothing; to live a good life, this you can do. Do what you can do, and you will have no reason to fear what you can't do.

RESPONSORY Saint Thomas of Villanova, Easter Sunday, Sermon 2.2

The resurrection of Christ alone bolsters our faith more than the multitude of his other wonders. (Outside Lent: Alleluia!)

- This alone is the unmovable pillar, the firm anchor, the stable foundation of the entire Christian religion (Outside Lent: Alleluia!)

REF:We carry the saving cross through the roads of the world. Through the alleys of poverty and misery, marching to a dawning day, to freedom and victory, to God's life and endless glory

CONCLUDING PRAYERS

For the Intentions of the Holy Father... (All Kneel)

One Our Father, Hail Mary and Glory...

Presider:Watch over with love, O Father, this your family for which your Son did not hesitate to consign himself to the hands of the enemies and to suffer the torment of the cross. Grant that in the joy of the Spirit, our family may take part in the victory of the resurrection of Jesus Christ which is remembered and celebrated in the upcoming paschal feast. We ask this through Christ our Lord.

All: Amen.

Presider: And the blessing of the Almighty God, Father, Son + and Holy Spirit, descend upon you and remain with you forever.

All: Amen.

If there is no priest-presider:

Praise be the Name of the Lord.

All:Both now and forever.

 

Join us!

SUBSCRIBE FOR STO. NIÑO NEWS & UPDATES, UPCOMING EVENTS, AND MUCH MORE...