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Ratzinger's Stations of the Cross

I suspect that if Cardinal Ratzinger were to walk into Stations at an average American Catholic church, those precious little milquetoast Stations pamphlets would spontaneously combust. At the request of the Pope, Ratzinger has composed his own Stations reflections and prayers which are available on the Vatican website. With literary skill that shames most Stations material I have seen, Ratzinger pulls no punches and places the awful price of past and current human sin back at the radical center of Christ’s suffering and death. It’s a powerful read.

Some excerpts:

“Amid the decay of ideologies, our faith needs once more to be the fragrance which returns us to the path of life.”

“Man has fallen, and he continues to fall: often he becomes a caricature of himself, no longer the image of God, but a mockery of the Creator.”

“Hearing Jesus reproach the women of Jerusalem who follow him and weep for him ought to make us reflect. How should we understand his words? Are they not directed at a piety which is purely sentimental, one which fails to lead to conversion and living faith? It is no use to lament the sufferings of this world if our life goes on as usual. And so the Lord warns us of the danger in which we find ourselves. He shows us both the seriousness of sin and the seriousness of judgment.”

"How often is the holy sacrament of his presence (in the Eucharist) abused; how often must he enter empty and evil hearts… how much filth there is in the Church.”


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