Meeting Jesus in the Stations

By Leslie Bertucci

For years, our family has hosted two special events that we call the Bertucci Family Advent/Lent Extravaganza.

We invite people from church, school, ministry and the community to our home. After sharing a potluck dinner, we have a time of sung worship, prayer and petition.

During Advent, we light the Advent wreath and talk about preparing our hearts for the coming of Christ. During Lent, we pray the Stations of the Cross. The house is crowded and loud, the food and fellowship are wonderful, and the bonds we create will probably last a lifetime.

This year we expect to have toddlers, teens, parents, singles and grandparents present.

I have been collecting various Stations of the Cross booklets over the years to have enough to hand out to everyone. To begin each station, we sing the chorus of “Behold the Wood,” and I announce the station. Then we wait to see who will read the reflection.

After about 10 seconds of awkward silence, someone volunteers. It’s interesting to hear the different meditations from the variety of authors. But even more engaging is watching a young reader valiantly struggle to figure out the words on the page, then pause and take in the meaning of what he has read.

My most poignant memory of this event happened when our youngest son was 10 years old.  As usual, he invited some school buddies to join us, including his friend William. This young man was being raised by a single parent who wasn’t a church-goer, so this was all new to him. By the time we got to the 12th station, “Jesus Dies on the Cross,” I noticed William was in tears. I realized this was the first time he had ever heard the story of Jesus’ passion and death.

Ever since that night, I have stopped assuming that the people I meet each day know the story of salvation. As often as possible, I take the opportunity to share it with them.

What a gift to be the bearer of such good news!

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