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#67 - THE PASSION OF CHRIST (PART II)
"It is Thy passion then, that makes me hope, in spite of my sins, that I too will one day reach the society of the saints... to sing Thy mercies, and to thank and love Thee forever in paradise." - St. Alphonsus de Liguori, The Passion and the Death of Jesus Christ
THE CARRYING OF THE CROSS
Then a soldier pushed Jesus out of the hole-like entrance and down a road. There were many people, all in a spirit of carnival.
Two soldiers pushed Jesus over to the side of the big crossbeam which was carried through the crowd. It looked like a heavy log--real rough, and a brownish wood. Two soldiers stood it up and another put Jesus over to it. Two soldiers started to tie His hands onto it. It was supported across His back and on the shoulders. It looked awfully heavy and awkward. The brown leather rope was taut across His elbow area. He seemed to be balancing and supporting the beam as He struggled on.
There were three ladies and a man walking off to one side with Him. The ladies were weeping silently. The man had his arm about a lady.... Jesus tripped and fell. He was so weak now, the beam had thrown Him off balance as He staggered. Poor Jesus fell. One nasty old man ran out of the crowd to spit and kick Him--the nasty old beast!...
Soon a soldier grabbed a man out of the crowd.... He sure didn't want to carry the beam, but they knew Jesus couldn't make it to the outskirts of the town. So this man shouldered the beam while the insane crowd taunted. Jesus was pushed and pulled along. Dirt and blood were all over Him; He was a picture of bloody grime.
I was retching; I was sick. Oh, such a horror! Such torture! How could they do this to Him? What did He do but love everyone! Beasts! Beasts!
Soon the soldier ran up with the five spikes. When they reached the hill, there was a long piece of wood already on the ground. A soldier lifted the beam from the shoulders of this other man and threw it to the ground. Two other soldiers placed it on top of the long piece of wood to form a cross--long all the way down, and sort of sticking out at the top. They slammed one spike into the two beams and the cross was made. -Veronica, March 8, 1971
Two lousy soldiers threw Jesus to the ground, and they pulled His arms out to stretch across the cross beam. Oh, how it hurt, the back so torn! I could see the pain in Jesus' eyes, but He never uttered a word. He just looked sad.
Then they took brown, leather-like cord and wrapped it around His wrists at the board, bound to the board. Then they lifted and tied the wrists to the board, bound and wound the leather cord around the ankles and the wood to hold Him in place.
Then the spikes were thrown onto the ground, and one soldier got down on his knees and he placed the spike in the center of the palm of poor Jesus' hand. With that metal mallet he drove it in through the skin and out into the board. I screamed! I threw up! This was repeated on the right hand. Then Jesus looked up to the sky.
They started on the legs--one large spike into both feet, His right foot over the left, at a twisted sort of angle, placed to lie flat against each other. I retched as I heard the metal against flesh and bone and wood. One spike protruded out the other side. They hammered a block of wood under His poor feet, "to line 'em up," they said. It was awful!
I looked off into the crowd. Oh, there were only nine people there to stay with Jesus. I now knew His Mother, Mary Cleophas,... Mary Magdalen, and John. Oh, poor Jesus - never a word did He say as they nailed Him to the wood. Oh, such love!
Soon two soldiers lifted the head of the wood and three the bottom, carrying Jesus on the cross, and dropped the end into a hole. It went in with a thump! Jesus winced. And it tore His hands more. Blood was trickling down His face. He couldn't move His head. The pain was awful; each movement cut deep. He sagged a bit, but pulled upward. The sagging tore more.
Mary and Mary ran up to Him. They did not speak at first; they could talk with their eyes to each other. They didn't need words. John came over, for Jesus' bottom tunic fell down. Oh, dear, He was almost naked. I turned away, but John ran over and tied sort of knots in it, like a diaper. Oh, the humiliation to poor Jesus! Then Jesus said to John: "Behold, John, your Mother. And this, Mother, is Your son. I must go to the Father soon...." Jesus cried: "Abba, abba sabba La bec tori" - that is what it sounded like - a foreign sound.... I can't spell it well, just by sound. Then He looked up. "I thirst!" This I heard in English....
Jesus' head hung down to His right. It became dark, so dark. Everyone went away but the nine. They all came close, and Mary clung to His feet, wordless in sorrow." -Veronica, March 8, 1971
Now He's putting His head upward, and He's saying, "Father, forgive them anew, for they do not know what they are doing!" - Veronica, September 7, 1979
THE GOOD THIEF
It has grown very dark. Ah, ah, the thunder--it's like thunder, it's loud. Everyone is frightened. They're falling and they're running away. Oh.
There are three crosses on the hill.... Oh, and the man on the left, he's tied.... There's a man, a soldier, he's got a big thing, looks like an axe. It's got--it's like a piece of rock tied onto a stick and he's hitting him in the legs with it. And the man is crying, "Have mercy on me!" And he, the soldier, he's hitting him in his legs, crushing his bones. The blood is pouring out. Now the man on the left, his head has fallen forward. Oh.
He's going over now--oh, he's taking this wide stick; it has a, a point on the end. And oh!... It's Jesus on the cross, and he's pushed it into Him just above His stomach! Oh! Now he can't pull it out. He's being covered. It's not blood; it's water. But... he's running; he can't seem to wash it of his face.... Now the stick, the spear is falling onto the ground. Oh!...
The man over on the left, his legs are all crushed.... He's suffering. Ah! He is on the right side of Jesus. He's looking over at Jesus. He says: "I, I have Your promise and I will cleanse myself for You." - Veronica, April 21, 1973
Next Directive - #68 The Eternal Father (Part I)
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