Today is the first Friday of the Lenten season. Lent calls us to prayer, fasting, and almsgiving.
During our Lenten prayer time, we should focus on the Passion and death of our Lord, Jesus Christ. Obviously, Lent will come to an end in Holy Week, during which we recount the last earthly actions of Jesus before the resurrection.
But we do not have to wait for Holy Week to spend time reflecting on the Passion and death of Christ. We have the Sorrowful Mysteries of the rosary to guide us. The five decades cover the events from Jesus’ time in the Garden of Gethsemane, where he formally takes on all the sins of man, through the Scourging at the Pillar, the Crowning with Thorns, the Carrying of the Cross, and, finally His Crucifixion and Death. The following prayers to be said for the Sorrowful Mysteries are from the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops website:
Scriptural Rosary: The Sorrowful Mysteries
A Rosary for Life: The Sorrowful Mysteries
Another great way to contemplate the Passion and death of Jesus is through the Stations of the Cross. Many Catholic churches across the country publicly say the stations on Friday evenings. This presents a great opportunity for the family of Christians to gather together and follow Jesus through 14 specific points in His Passion. There are many different booklets on the stations. Here are two versions you may want to consider (both are taken from the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops website):
Scriptural Stations of the Cross (based on St. John Paul II’s Good Friday, 1991, prayers)
Stations of the Cross for Life
For those readers who desire a much more detailed account of Christ’s Passion through the eyes of a visionary in a book that has a nihil obstat and an imprimatur, you may consider The Dolorous (Sorrowful) Passion of Our Lord Jesus Christ from the meditations of Anne Catherine Emmerich (in the Table of Contents, click on THE PASSION).