The Parish Church of St John-at-Hampstead

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March 2018

The Way of the Cross

John Willmer

By Henri Gheon, translated by Frank de Jonge

Come and follow Christ as he goes from Pilate to His death on the Cross.

The Hampstead Players will perform a dramatised reading of this play on Saturday, 24th March, at 2.30 pm and on Tuesday, 27th March, at 7.30 pm.

The play begins with words spoken by the Reciter:
    “God is led to the slaughter.
    The just redeems my loss.
    He shall drink of the torrent’s water.
    And he shall be nailed to the Cross”

Thereafter it follows the traditional fourteen Stations of the Cross.   Each scene portrays one Station, with the actors playing the part both of watchers and of characters in the Passion, by speaking for them and describing what is happening, rather than by actually portraying it in action.  They also look deeper, recognizing man’s causative role in Christ’s sacrifice of Himself – “Had we but lived better, Had we but loved more, He would not have died”.  Herein is part of the power of the play in that it recognizes our need for redemption as well as the act of redemption.  And so it may help us to understand the way in which Christ would lead us and to feel something of the depth of God’s love.

The play will last about hour, with no interval.  Admission is free, but there will be a retiring collection in aid of the Diocese of London Homelessness appeal.

Note.  The traditional * fourteen Stations of the Cross are:

1.  Jesus is condemned to death.
2.  Jesus is made to bear His Cross.
3.  Jesus falls the first time.
4.  Jesus meets His mother.
5.  Simon of Cyrene is made to bear the Cross.
6.  Veronica wipes Jesus’ Face.
7.  Jesus falls the second time.
8.  The women of Jerusalem weep over Jesus.
9.  Jesus falls the third time.
10.  Jesus is stripped of His garments.
11.  Jesus is nailed to the Cross.
12.  Jesus dies on the Cross.
13.  Jesus is taken down from the Cross.
14.  Jesus is placed in the sepulchre.

* These are somewhat different from the Stations illustrated around the church during Lent which are taken from Times and Seasons, Common Worship Texts for the Church of England.

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