March 10th, 2008

Madonna del "Magnificat" (detail)

Altar for Easter

This is our altar for Easter: eggs, a hare, a rooster and chickens. Each year we put the same children book on it, borrowed from the library. It is about the donkey that carries Jesus on his back into Jerusalem. During the Holy Week we turn the pages to follow the story of the Passion.
shrouded crucifix

Stations of the Cross


During Lent, and especially during the Holy Week (next week) the so called ‘Stations of the Cross’ are contemplated. These are fourteen pictures or statutes. They depict what happened to Jesus on the road to Calvary until his burial, from the moment Jesus is condemned by Pilate. People walk by those stations and pause at each one to meditate and say prayers. In almost all Catholic churches the stations are on the walls of the nave. Sometimes the stations are in the woods, a garden, or on a road up a hill. The reason to contemplate these stations is a mix of adoration, devotion and imitation. 

On the picture above the stations take the form of a comic.
shrouded crucifix

Station 1, Condemnation

Station 1 of the Stations of the Cross depicts the scene in which Jesus is condemned to death by Pilate. On almost all pictures Jesus stands upright when this happens. 


My question is: "How do I take a stand when I am being condemned?" I’ve used the Tarot of Jane Austen, and I’ve pulled Four of Coins. 


Sitting at the table are John Dashwood and his wife from the book Sense and Sensibility. In the back are Elinor, Marianne and their mother as fading shadows. John Dashwood has promised that he would provide for Elinor, Marianne and their mother when his father dies. He does not do it. His wife prevents it. She wants to give hardly anything to them. John is like Pilate in the passage where Jesus is convicted. He condemns Jesus but says is doing it because the mob outside the palaces wants it. We will never know if he secretly thought Jesus death served him politically, as it served John Dashwood not to give money away so he could keep it. The girls and their mother are brave, they are not well-off, but live with their heads up high, making something of their lives.

How does the card apply to me? How do I take a stand when I am condemned? When I am condemned for what I do, what occasionally does happen, it is often out of fear. It makes me upset and sad (see the faces of the three in the back), but I do not make a scene when it happens (the girls and their mother stand in the shadow). I do go on living my own life though, with my own values, in my own way and manner.