The devotion known as the Way of the Cross is an adaptation of a custom widely observed by pilgrims to Jerusalem: the offering of prayer at a series of places in that city traditionally associated with our Lord’s passion and death. This practice is also known as Stations of the Cross.
The Department of Lifelong Learning at Virginia Theological Seminary is pleased to offer a video version of The Way of the Cross and a reflection guide in both English and Spanish. Through scripture, art, and music, the video invites us to walk with Christians of every generation on a virtual pilgrimage, meditating on our Lord’s passion and death. Permission is granted for unlimited use of this video.
The liturgy for this devotional multimedia experience comes from the Book of Occasional Services. The artwork is Margaret Adams Parker’s Stations of the Cross Paintings (2019), and the music is composed by Marty Wheeler Burnett (©2020 St. James Music Press, www.sjmp.com).
Using These Resources
You may wish to “walk” the Way of the Cross individually, as a household, in a neighborhood gathering, or with a small group online. Here are some suggestions:
Interact with the Video
Try speaking aloud the words in italics as they appear on the screen, facilitating a call/response feel to the liturgy. You might also try singing the musical response that is repeated after each station or following along with the text for the service found in the Book of Occasional Services.
Discuss with Others
Use the reflection guide to help facilitate personal reflection or discussion in a small group online, as a household, or in a socially distanced gathering. If the list of prompts seems overwhelming, simply ask, “What did you(I) notice?” You can reflect on the video as a whole this way or pause the video between stations. If you are using this video with a small group online, consider asking participants to share what they are noticing in the chat as the video plays.
Use in Worship
The Stations of the Cross are particularly appropriate to the Fridays in Lent, but should not displace the proper liturgy of Good Friday. Consider making this Lenten devotion available online for your congregation or small group throughout the season. Keeping a rhythm of standing, sitting, and kneeling, as suited to your context, encourages full body engagement.
This video invites us to meditate on our Lord’s passion and death through scripture, art, and music. Consider responding to the video through your own creativity: write a poem, create a Spotify playlist, or sketch your own version of one of the stations.
Share Your Ideas
We would love to know how you are using these resources and share your ideas through our social media channels! Email us your stories and pictures at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Below you will find links to resources in English and in Spanish.
Resources in English
The Way of the Cross Video
The Way of the Cross: A Reflection Guide
The Book of Occasional Services (The Way of the Cross begins on page 46)
Recursos En Español
Building Faith Article (en español)
El Via Crucis: Guía de Reflexión
El video del Vía Crucis
Libro de ritos ocasionales (Vía Crucis comenzando en la página 43)
Thank you for this means of praying the Stations of the Cross at home during covid.
The bells seemed awfully loud to me but gradually I was able to block them out and let them move me along the journey.
The artwork is especially powerful.
The sung refrain felt comforting as well as prayerful.
Again, thank you for this gratefully accepted offering.
Sarah Bentley Allred
Thank you for this feedback! We are so glad you found it meaningful!
Our parish would like to use this as part of an outside, interactive Way of the Cross for Good Friday. We want to provide the video for each station as a separate file that people will access by scanning a QR code at that station. We certainly plan on crediting VTS and including the discussion questions at the end of each station.
Is there a place where we would find the video for each station or could we have permission to download the full video so it could be broken up into the individual stations.