St. Matthias Parishioners Hold Annual ‘Stations Of The Cross’ Walk

St. Matthias parishioners walk to another station of the cross during the April 19 event.

About 200 parishioners participated in the annual Stations of the Cross walk held by St. Matthias Catholic Church on April 19.

The church holds the event every Good Friday.

The 14 stations commemorate Jesus Christ’s last day on Earth, and focus on his suffering as he carried his cross to Cavalry, where he was crucified.

The St. Matthias walk started at John F. Kennedy Boulevard and Hughes Road, and ended in the church.

The walk’s significance is both physical and spiritual, said Fr. Abraham Orapankal, the church’s temporary pastor.

Fr. Orapankal said the stations’ practice began about 500 years ago, created to people who wanted to follow Jesus’ last path could do so without having to travel to Jerusalem.

“So they said, there is another way to walk with the Jesus, no matter what part of the world you are, professing Christianity,” he said.

The walk’s physical significance lies “in the sense because it happened 2,000 years ago, we are trying to walk the same way Christ walked, carrying the cross to Cavalry,” he said. “So in a way, symbolically, even though it is not Jerusalem, we are walking it here, replicating the actual scenarios, the 14 stations, from tradition.”

“By doing the physical, we are recognizing with a grateful heart what Jesus did for us and we are in a sense participating a little bit in the suffering Jesus when through for us,” Fr. Orapankal said. “Even just now, we were walking in the hot sun, the little kids and adults were getting tried, but accepting those little sufferings as a way of participating in the suffering of Jesus Christ, thereby recognizing what God has done for us in Jesus Christ.”

The spiritual aspect comes into play as people reflect while they walk from station to station, he said.

“While we walk, we reflect on these stations, these are excellent spiritual enrichment that we take for ourselves,” he said. “So not just physically walking, but enriching our inner self by reflecting at each station with the thoughts, lessons and insights that are very beneficial for our daily living.”

“Many of these themes are based on social justice issues,” he said. “So whether you are a Christian or not, if you happen to attend these, these reflections at each station can relate to you, no matter what you believe. Because it’s all about injustice, difficulties in the legal system, difficulties about what people do to one another, racism, not considering each other as a human being, all those are coming into play. That’s why it’s very, very significant for Christians.”

Here are some scenes from the event:


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