Quotes & Sayings

We, and creation itself, actualize the possibilities of the God who sustains the world, towards becoming in the world in a fuller, more deeper way. - R.E. Slater

There is urgency in coming to see the world as a web of interrelated processes of which we are integral parts, so that all of our choices and actions have [consequential effects upon] the world around us. - Process Metaphysician Alfred North Whitehead

Kurt Gödel's Incompleteness Theorem says (i) all closed systems are unprovable within themselves and, that (ii) all open systems are rightly understood as incomplete. - R.E. Slater

The most true thing about you is what God has said to you in Christ, "You are My Beloved." - Tripp Fuller

The God among us is the God who refuses to be God without us, so great is God's Love. - Tripp Fuller

According to some Christian outlooks we were made for another world. Perhaps, rather, we were made for this world to recreate, reclaim, redeem, and renew unto God's future aspiration by the power of His Spirit. - R.E. Slater

Our eschatological ethos is to love. To stand with those who are oppressed. To stand against those who are oppressing. It is that simple. Love is our only calling and Christian Hope. - R.E. Slater

Secularization theory has been massively falsified. We don't live in an age of secularity. We live in an age of explosive, pervasive religiosity... an age of religious pluralism. - Peter L. Berger

Exploring the edge of life and faith in a post-everything world. - Todd Littleton

I don't need another reason to believe, your love is all around for me to see. – Anon

Thou art our need; and in giving us more of thyself thou givest us all. - Khalil Gibran, Prayer XXIII

Be careful what you pretend to be. You become what you pretend to be. - Kurt Vonnegut

Religious beliefs, far from being primary, are often shaped and adjusted by our social goals. - Jim Forest

We become who we are by what we believe and can justify. - R.E. Slater

People, even more than things, need to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed, and redeemed; never throw out anyone. – Anon

Certainly, God's love has made fools of us all. - R.E. Slater

An apocalyptic Christian faith doesn't wait for Jesus to come, but for Jesus to become in our midst. - R.E. Slater

Christian belief in God begins with the cross and resurrection of Jesus, not with rational apologetics. - Eberhard Jüngel, Jürgen Moltmann

Our knowledge of God is through the 'I-Thou' encounter, not in finding God at the end of a syllogism or argument. There is a grave danger in any Christian treatment of God as an object. The God of Jesus Christ and Scripture is irreducibly subject and never made as an object, a force, a power, or a principle that can be manipulated. - Emil Brunner

“Ehyeh Asher Ehyeh” means "I will be that who I have yet to become." - God (Ex 3.14) or, conversely, “I AM who I AM Becoming.”

Our job is to love others without stopping to inquire whether or not they are worthy. - Thomas Merton

The church is God's world-changing social experiment of bringing unlikes and differents to the Eucharist/Communion table to share life with one another as a new kind of family. When this happens, we show to the world what love, justice, peace, reconciliation, and life together is designed by God to be. The church is God's show-and-tell for the world to see how God wants us to live as a blended, global, polypluralistic family united with one will, by one Lord, and baptized by one Spirit. – Anon

The cross that is planted at the heart of the history of the world cannot be uprooted. - Jacques Ellul

The Unity in whose loving presence the universe unfolds is inside each person as a call to welcome the stranger, protect animals and the earth, respect the dignity of each person, think new thoughts, and help bring about ecological civilizations. - John Cobb & Farhan A. Shah

If you board the wrong train it is of no use running along the corridors of the train in the other direction. - Dietrich Bonhoeffer

God's justice is restorative rather than punitive; His discipline is merciful rather than punishing; His power is made perfect in weakness; and His grace is sufficient for all. – Anon

Our little [biblical] systems have their day; they have their day and cease to be. They are but broken lights of Thee, and Thou, O God art more than they. - Alfred Lord Tennyson

We can’t control God; God is uncontrollable. God can’t control us; God’s love is uncontrolling! - Thomas Jay Oord

Life in perspective but always in process... as we are relational beings in process to one another, so life events are in process in relation to each event... as God is to Self, is to world, is to us... like Father, like sons and daughters, like events... life in process yet always in perspective. - R.E. Slater

To promote societal transition to sustainable ways of living and a global society founded on a shared ethical framework which includes respect and care for the community of life, ecological integrity, universal human rights, respect for diversity, economic justice, democracy, and a culture of peace. - The Earth Charter Mission Statement

Christian humanism is the belief that human freedom, individual conscience, and unencumbered rational inquiry are compatible with the practice of Christianity or even intrinsic in its doctrine. It represents a philosophical union of Christian faith and classical humanist principles. - Scott Postma

It is never wise to have a self-appointed religious institution determine a nation's moral code. The opportunities for moral compromise and failure are high; the moral codes and creeds assuredly racist, discriminatory, or subjectively and religiously defined; and the pronouncement of inhumanitarian political objectives quite predictable. - R.E. Slater

God's love must both center and define the Christian faith and all religious or human faiths seeking human and ecological balance in worlds of subtraction, harm, tragedy, and evil. - R.E. Slater

In Whitehead’s process ontology, we can think of the experiential ground of reality as an eternal pulse whereby what is objectively public in one moment becomes subjectively prehended in the next, and whereby the subject that emerges from its feelings then perishes into public expression as an object (or “superject”) aiming for novelty. There is a rhythm of Being between object and subject, not an ontological division. This rhythm powers the creative growth of the universe from one occasion of experience to the next. This is the Whiteheadian mantra: “The many become one and are increased by one.” - Matthew Segall

Without Love there is no Truth. And True Truth is always Loving. There is no dichotomy between these terms but only seamless integration. This is the premier centering focus of a Processual Theology of Love. - R.E. Slater


Note: Generally I do not respond to commentary. I may read the comments but wish to reserve my time to write (or write off the comments I read). Instead, I'd like to see our community help one another and in the helping encourage and exhort each of us towards Christian love in Christ Jesus our Lord and Savior. - re slater

Sunday, April 12, 2020

Easter Week - The Stations of the Cross

I know my sheep. They hear my voice and follow.
Their names are written upon my heart.

Now The Green Blade Riseth

The Stations of the Cross

Waiting at the Stations of the Cross

WAITING AT THE STATION (The Book): Meditations on the Mysteries of ...
Amazon Link

Reference Sites

Malcom Guite - Good Friday, The Stations of the Cross

Stations Of The Cross In Poetry & Prayer
A Poem by Rosalinda Flores Martinez

Station 1: Jesus is condemned to death

You were betrayed Jesus
Even by trusted friends
Still shows us charity
Life for us you mend

Your power brings to serve
People you call your own
Condemned to death, for us
A Father’s promise sown

Jesus on the cross, by your love heal us.

Station 2: Jesus bears his cross

Cross, you bear means love
Almighty’s gift to the world
Jesus, brother, keeper
To journey with us, Lord

You became man
Mercy for humanity
Sky and earth unite
Miracle flowing sanctity

Jesus on the Cross, by your love heal us.

Station 3: Jesus falls the first time

Lord, let us hold you
Lord, let us rise with you
Power in humility
Shows us to be true

No man is perfect
Only God - is
Lord Jesus, as example
If fallen, hold to peace

Jesus on the cross, by your love heals us.

Station 4: Jesus meets his mother

What grief for a mother
What grief for a child
What grief for a beloved
Alone in sorrow, Jesus guides

Feel us Jesus
In sorrow and isolation
But God’s will is best
Have mercy in temptation

Jesus on the cross, by your love heal us.

Station 5: Jesus is helped by Simon

Simon of Cyrene, hail to God
Courage and cross you lifted
Bridge to us from heaven
Angel signs we’re gifted

And so we come in prayer
Flesh, thoughts, and our hearts
Your holy cross dear Jesus
To us don’t ever part.

Jesus on the cross, by your love heal us.

Station 6: Veronica wipes the face of Jesus

Saint, Oh Saint Veronica
Ring bells to God’s workers
Crown of thorns on Holy face
Hope and bliss, His blood carves

O, poor Face we love you
Face of beauty, Face of light
In suffering and brokenness
Sacred Face of might

Jesus on the cross, by your love heal us.

Station 7: Jesus falls a second time

My Lord! My God! My Savior!
We trust our lives in Thee
You know how weak we all are
We beg, we beg, we plea

My Lord! My God!
Be here to servants frail
Hold me, hold us
O’er wind we fly, on sea we sail

Jesus on the cross, by your love heal us.

Station 8: Jesus speaks to the women

Help us to love Mother Mary
You longed your parents, too
The crowd, are us, your family
How precious all to you

Speak to us, we long for Thee
The bravest soldier frees
From sin and wars
Your words a bomb and keys

Jesus on the cross, by your love heal us.

Station 9: Jesus falls a third time

Race and blows
The third’s the final count
Your sacrifice, a painful lash
Forgive our sins abound

Hold tight hold, dear Jesus
Please - do not let go
These eyes are full of tears
Wash us white as snow

Jesus on the cross, by your love heal us.

Station 10: Jesus is stripped of his garments

When all is done for love
So fair and pure the nakedness
And all that Christ gave
T’ was peace for all and happiness

Strip all, be all
We ask You for nothing
Let You alone fill us
Christ, O Christ be everything!

Jesus on the cross, by your love heal us.

Station 11: Jesus is nailed to the cross

Nails piercing us
First pierced on you
Nations already won
Sacred Cross on earth anew

Man and tides pushing rocks
When life cries in pain
Trials come harrowing
Lord let Your Kingdom reign.

Jesus on the cross, by your love heal us.

How You loved us, Jesus; How great, You are God’s Son
How You loved us, Jesus; How great, You are God’s Son:

“Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do
Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise
Woman, this is your son. And this is your mother
My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?
I thirst
It is finished.”

Then, Jesus cried out in a loud voice
“Father, into your hands I commend my spirit.”

Jesus on the cross, by your love heal us.

Station 12: Jesus dies on the cross

Tomorrow’s death so scary
Life today we pray
Us - forever with you Jesus
With Almighty Father lay

Jesus how we love you
Let us see Thy face
Forgive us in transgressions
A Holy Cross wins grace

Jesus on the cross, by your love heal us.

Station 13: Jesus is taken from the cross

God’s justice stark in love
Priests on temples pray
Breath of Holy Spirit blows
Forever brothers all we stay

Body whole and pure
No evil can defeat
The triumph of the cross
For holy workers banquet

Jesus on the cross, by your love heal us.

Station 14: Jesus is laid in the tomb

Love never fails; never ends
The Holy Bible writes
Wake us up dear Jesus
At dawn, resurrect flight

We adore you O Christ
Have mercy -
Your holy cross be salvation
Hearts with Thee forever, have mercy.

Jesus on the cross, by your love heal us.

We love you.
I love you.

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

Easter Sunday Service: April 12, 2020

Office of Religious Life Princeton
Easter Sunday Worship Service
Rev. Alison L. Boden, Ph.D.
will be preaching on Easter Sunday, and
the service will also have magnificent music,
with soloists, Jennifer Borghi '02
and Samuel Duffey '19,
Eric Plutz, University Organist, and
Penna Rose, Director of Chapel Music.

Online Concert

The Stations of the Cross

View our organ concert online Friday, April 10 at 7pm! “The Stations of the Cross” by Marcel Dupré. Featuring organist, Ken Cowan, the poetry of Paul Claudel, and Rev. Alison L. Boden, Ph.D. as narrator. The link is available here and the program is below.

Organ Concert: “The Stations of the Cross” (Le Chemin de la Croix) by Marcel Dupré (1886-1971) with poetry of Paul Claudel, organist, Ken Cowan and reader, Rev. Alison L. Boden, Ph.D.**

Poem: “The Way of the Cross” by Paul Claudel, translated by J. Eric Swenson, and read by Rev. Alison L. Boden, Ph.D.

First Station: It’s all over. We have judged God and we have condemned him to die. We don’t want Jesus Christ with us any longer, for he exasperates us. We have no other ruler than Caesar! No other counsel than blood and gold!

Crucify him if you like, but get rid of him! Get him out of here! “Take him away! Take him away!” Since it can’t be helped, let him be sacrificed, and give us Barabbas! Pilate sits in judgement at the place called Gabbatha. “Have you nothing to say?” asks Pilate. And Jesus does not answer. “I find no wrong in this man,” declares Pilate, “but, let him die, since you insist! I give him to you. “Behold the man.” Here he is, a crown on his head and dressed in purple. One last time these eyes turn towards us, full of tears and blood! What can we do? There is no way to keep him with us any longer. As he was a scandal for the Jews, he is among us an absurdity. Besides, the sentence has been pronounced, lacking no detail, in Hebrew, Greek, and Latin. And one sees the crowd clamor and the judge wash his hands.

Second Station: They return his clothes and bring him the cross. “God be with you,” says Jesus. “O Cross that I have long desired!” And you, Christian, watch and tremble! O what a solemn moment in which Christ first accepts the eternal Cross! O day of consummation of the tree of knowledge! Look, sinner, and see what your sin has led to.

No more crosses without Christ, and no more crimes without a God upon them! Certainly man’s misery is great, yet we have nothing to say, for God is now here, come not to explain, but to fulfill. Jesus receives the Cross just as we take Holy Communion.

As prophesied by Jeremiah, “We give him wood for his bread.” How long, how ungainly, how massive weighs the cross! How hard, how stiff, how heavy the burden of a useless sinner! How long to bear, step by step, until one dies upon it! Are you going to carry that all alone, Lord Jesus?

Make me patient, in turn, with the wood you wish me to bear. For we must carry the cross before the cross carries us.

Third Station: March on! Victim and oppressors together, everything shudders toward Calvary. God led by the collar, suddenly falters and slumps to the earth. What do you say, Lord, of this first fall? Now that you know it, what do you think of this moment? When one falls, pushed by the sway of an unbalanced load! How do you find it, this earth which you created? O not only is the righteous path harsh and rough, the evil path also proves treacherous and dizzying! It is not followed quickly and easily, for one must learn stone by stone, and the foot often slips, although the heart perseveres. O Lord, by these blessed knees, these two knees which together failed you, by the sudden nausea and fall at the beginning of the gruesome Way, by the trap which succeeded, by the earth which you have known, save us from the first sin, which one commits inadvertently!

Fourth Station: O mothers, who have watched a first and only child die, remember that last night beside the moaning little being, the water not taken, the ice, and the thermometer, and death, which comes little by little, no longer to be ignored. Put on his old shoes and change his clothes. Someone is coming who will take him away from me and put him in the ground. Goodby my dear little one! Goodby, flesh of my flesh!

The Fourth Station is Mary, who has accepted everything. Here on the street corner she awaits the Treasure of absolute Poverty. There are no tears in her eyes, her throat is dry. She says not a word and watches Jesus approach. She accepts. One again she accepts. Her outcry severely repressed in her firm, strict heart. She says not a word and watches Jesus Christ. The Mother watches her Son, the Church her Redeemer, her soul goes out to him as violently as the wail of a dying soldier! She stands before God and lays bare her soul. There is nothing in her heart which protests or draws back, every fiber of her transfixed heart accepts and consents. And as God himself is there, she is also present. She accepts and watches this Son she conceived in her womb. She says not a word and watches the Saint of Saints.

Fifth Station: The moment comes when one simply cannot go on. That’s where we fit in, and you allow that we be used also, perhaps coerced, to carry your Cross. As Simon of Cyrene, who is harnessed to this piece of wood. He grasps it firmly and walks behind Jesus, so that none of the Cross may drag on the ground and be lost.

Sixth Station: All of the disciples have fled. Peter himself passionately denies all! A woman throws herself into the thick of insults, into the arms of death, finds Jesus and holds his face in her hands.

Teach us, Veronica, to defy human respect. For he who sees Christ not merely as a symbol, but as a true person, to others soon appears offensive and suspect. His way of life is inside out, his motives are no longer theirs.

Something in him always seems to escape elsewhere. A mature man who says his rosary and impudently goes to confession, who abstains from meat on Friday and is seen among women at mass, is laughable and scandalous; amusing, but also irritating. He had better watch what he is doing, for others see him. He had better watch each step, for he serves as a sign. For each Christian shapes the actual, although unworthy, image of his Christ. And the face he shows bears the trivial reflection of the abominable and triumphant face of the God in his heart!

Show it to us once again Veronica, on the cloth with which you comforted the holy countenance of the Last Sacrament. This veil of pious wool Veronica used to hide the face of the Vintager on the day of his intoxication, so that his image might cling to it forever. An image made of his blood and tears and our spit!

Seventh Station: It is not the stones under foot, nor the halter overstrained; it is the soul which suddenly fails. O in the middle of our life! O the spontaneous fall! When the magnet no longer has a pole and faith no longer a heaven, because the road is long and the end distant, because one remains alone without any consolation! How slowly time passes! Nurturing a secret hatred for the uncompromising injunction and for this wooden companion! This is why we stretch forth both arms at once like someone swimming! No longer do we fall on our knees, but on our face. The body falls, it is true and in the same moment the soul consents. Save us from the Second fall, which one takes willfully and out of boredom.

Eighth Station: Before he ascends the mountain for the last time, Jesus raises his hand and turns toward the people following him, a few poor women in tears with their children in their arms. Let’s not simply look, let’s listen to Jesus, for he is there. It is not a man who raises his hand at the center of this pitiful illumination, it is God who, for our salvation, has suffered not only in paintings. Thus was this man Almighty God! It is true then! There was a day when God truly did suffer for us! What is this danger, from which we have been spared at such a price? Is man’s salvation such a simple matter that the Son must tear himself away from the Father to attain it? If that is Paradise, what is Hell? What shall be done with the dead wood, if green wood is treated like this?

Ninth Station: “I have fallen again, and this time, it’s the end. I would like to get up again, but it’s impossible. For I have been squeezed like a fruit and the man on my shoulders weighs too much. I have done evil and the man who died in me is too heavy! So let’s die, for it is easier to lie down than to stand up, harder to live than to die, more difficult yet, on the Cross than beneath it.”

Save us from the Third sin, that of despair! Nothing is lost as long as death has not been tasted! I have finished with this piece of wood, but the nails are yet to come! Jesus falls a third time, but he is at the top of Calvary.

Tenth Station: Here is the barn floor where the grain of the holy wheat is ground. The Father stands naked, the Temple veil has been torn away. God is manhandled, the Flesh of the Flesh trembles, the Universe, attacked at its source, shudders to its very core! Now that they have taken the tunic and seamless robe. We raise our eyes and dare to look at Jesus, pure and unadorned. They have left you nothing, Lord, they have taken everything, even the clothes which cling to the flesh, for today they pull off the monk’s hood and the blessed virgin’s veil. They have taken everything, there remains nothing for him to hide in. He stands totally defenseless and stark naked. He is delivered to mankind and revealed. What! That’s your Jesus! He is ridiculous! He is beaten and covered with filth. He belongs with the psychiatrists and the police. “Gross beasts have besieged me. Deliver me, Lord, from the mouth of the dog.” He is not the Christ. He is not the Son of Man. He is not God. His teachings are false and his Father is not in heaven. He’s crazy! He’s an imposter! Make him talk! Keep him quiet! Anne’s servant slaps him and Renan kisses him. They took everything. But the scarlet blood remains. They took everything. But the open wound remains! God is hidden. But the man of sorrows remains. God is hidden. My weeping brother remains! From your humiliation Lord, from your shame, take pity on the defeated, on the weak oppressed by the strong! From the horror of that last garment taken from you, take pity on all those who are mutilated! On the child, operated on three times, encouraged by the doctor, and on the poor invalid whose bandages are changed. On the humiliated husband, on the son beside his dying mother, And on this terrifying love, which must be torn from our heart!

Eleventh Station: Now God is no longer with us. He lies on the ground. The mob has taken him by the throat as dogs take a stag.

So you did come! You are truly among us Lord! You have been sat upon, your heart has been knelt upon. This hand forced by the executioner is the right hand of the Almighty. This Lamb has been tied by the feet, the Omnipresent is bound. His height and span have been marked on the cross. When he feels our nails, we’ll watch his expression.

Eternal Son, limited only by the bounds of Infinity, Marked here among us by that narrow space which you have controlled! Here is this body Elijah stretches out in death, here lies David’s throne and Solomon’s glory, here is the bed of our cruel, powerful passion with You! It is difficult for God to assume our stature. They tug, and the half-dislocated body snaps and cries aloud. Drawn with the tension of a wine press, he is hideously quartered. So the prophecy might be fulfilled that: “They have pierced my hands and feet, they have numbered each of my bones.” You are captured Lord, and can no longer escape. You are nailed on the cross, hand and foot. Like a heretic or a lunatic, I seek nothing more from heaven. This God held by four nails is enough for me.

Twelfth Station: A moment ago he was suffering, it is true, but now he is going to die. The Great Cross sways faintly in the night to the pulse of God’s breathing. Everything is ready. One can only leave the Apparatus alone, to inexhaustibly draw from the bond of man’s double nature, from the hypostatic union of body and soul, all of his inherent potential for suffering. He is all alone as Adam was alone in Eden. For three hours he remains alone and savors the Wine, the unconquerable ignorance of man in the absence of God! Our guest grows weary and his forehead slowly droops. He no longer sees his Mother, and his Father abandons him. He tastes the cup, and the death, which slowly poisons him. Have You not had enough of this bitter wine diluted with water, to cause You to suddenly straighten up and cry: “I thirst”? Are You thirsty Lord? Are You talking to me? Do You still need me and my sins? Am I needed so that all may be consummated?

Thirteenth Station: Here the Passion ends and the Compassion continues. Christ is no longer on the Cross. He is with Mary, who has received him; as she accepted him in prophecy, she receives him consummated. Christ, who suffered before all, is again cradled at his Mother’s breast. The Church forever embraces and watches over her beloved. That from God, that from the Mother, and that which man has done, all of this is with her forever under her habit. She has taken him in; she sees, touches, prays, weeps, and admires; she is the winding sheet and the ointment, the sepulcher and the incense. Here ends the Cross and begins the Tabernacle.

Fourteenth Station: The tomb where Christ is put, having suffered and died, the hole hastily unsealed so that he might spend his night there, before the crucified revived and ascended to the Father, this is not merely a new tomb, it is my flesh, it is man, your creature, more profound than the earth! Now that his heart is open and his hands are pierced, there is no cross among us on which his body will not fit, there is no sin in us to which his wound will not correspond. So come to us, from the altar where you are hidden, Redeemer of the World!Lord, your creature is rent open and how profound he is!

Music: “The Stations of the Cross”
(Le Chemin de la Croix),
by Marcel Dupré (1886-1971)
performed by organist, Ken Cowan.

I. Jesus is condemned to death. Opening with a trumpet solo evoking Pilate’s command, “Gardes, saisissez-vous de cet homme,” (“guards, seize this man”) the music becomes increasingly tumultuous, depicting an agitated crowd shouting for the release of Barrabas, and for Jesus to be put to death. The theme for “Barrabas” is the rhythm of the name, (if pronounced BAR-ra-bas) played on trumpet stops. The crushing two-note climax, “To death,” which precipitates the quick dispersal of the mob, is heard again in station XII.

II. Jesus receives His cross. The March to Calvary begins, and the melodic theme of the Cross is heard repeatedly on reed registers; the stumbling steps of Jesus are illustrated in the accompaniment.

III. Jesus falls for the first time. The march continues. Labored sounding two-note groups describe Jesus’ weariness. The theme for Suffering is heard high in the treble. Finally Jesus’ strength fails and He falls under the weight of the cross. In the last few bars, the theme of Redemption is heard for the first time, pianissimo.

IV. Jesus meets His mother. A flute solo with string tone accompaniment depicts the Mater Dolorosa. The rather chromatic harmonies of the accompaniment might suggest her emotional turmoil. The same music will be heard again in Station XIII as she receives her son’s lifeless body. The theme of Agony is heard because Mary’s suffering is great.

V. Simon the Cyrene helps Jesus to carry the cross. Dupré evokes here a completely different atmosphere-we are in the countryside. The piece opens with pastoral sounding music played on flute stops. Simon, on his way into the city from the countryside, lends reluctant assistance bearing the cross, and does not find it easy at first. He is first depicted clumsily helping Jesus carry the cross and trying to get into step as the procession moves. A series of canons between the outside parts depict Simon’s attempts to assist. Finally the Cross theme is heard united over a range of two octaves, above and below the accompaniment. Finally he has synchronized his steps with those of Jesus. The Cross theme is inverted, and near the end there is a brief appearance of the Redemption motif.

VI. Jesus and Veronica. Veronica comes out of the crowd to wipe Jesus’ brow with a cloth, evoking the melodic theme of Compassion. The theme of the Cross is heard in the bass as Jesus pauses for a moment. As the movement ends the Redemption motif is heard again, beautifully harmonized.

VII. Jesus falls a second time. This station begins in the same slow, march-like rhythm heard at the beginning of the third station, but the accompaniment soon becomes more agitated. This is a more grotesque event than the first fall, and the horror of the scene is matched with ever more grinding dissonance.

VIII. Jesus comforts the women of Jerusalem. There are some women present who feel pity for Jesus, and the theme of Pity is a beautiful cantilena which pervades the entire movement, and will be heard again in Station XIV. The theme for Consolation is heard in the tenor register played on a reed stop, representing Jesus’ voice.

IX. Jesus falls a third time. The crowd, now exasperated by the slow pace of the procession, fervently clamors for blood, and shouts insults. The principal theme here is Persecution- three repeated notes followed by an ascending diminished triad. A busy chromatic accompaniment recalls a frenzied crowd. The third and final fall is sudden and devastating, but now the place of execution, Calvary has finally been reached, and a brief period of calm follows before the final indignities are inflicted.

X. Jesus is stripped of His clothes. The executioners strip Jesus of His clothes, and throw dice for His seamless coat. Dupré accompanies this scene with a rhythmic, sinister sounding piece played staccato on string stops. After a pause there follows the music of the Incarnation as if to remind the listener that for this purpose Jesus had come into the world. Jesus awaits His end, a pitiable figure indeed.

XI. Jesus is nailed on the Cross. Hammering fortissimo chords expressing the violent cruelty of the executioners become the theme of Crucifixion. The theme for Suffering (from Station III) is combined in longer phrases. The repetitive pedal line is an extension of the Cross motif, inverted.

Jesus dies upon the Cross. The agony of the slow passing hours is represented with a still sounding introduction containing a theme similar to that of Redemption. The dying Jesus speaks His seven last words. A sudden and violent crescendo by the organ represents the earthquake, and the rending of the veil of the temple. Jesus has been put to death. An uneasy stillness follows the final tremors.

XIII. Jesus’ body is taken from the cross and laid in Mary’s bosom. A fluid and unsettled sounding arabesque on flute stops evoking the whirling of ropes accompanies the descent from the cross and the slow sliding movements by which the body is brought down. The theme of the now-accomplished Redemption is present. Mary’s music from Station IV is heard again at the end of this meditation as she holds the body of Jesus in her arms.

XIV. The body of Jesus is laid in the tomb. Pity, the theme of the eighth station, is the dominant theme of the cortege preceding Jesus’ entombment. The theme of Suffering also accounts for a large portion of this final scene. The epilogue contains some subtle musical inspiration. A heavenly stillness envelops the scene. The theme of Suffering, is now transformed into the Fruits of the Redemption. Flute melodies played high above illustrate the gates of heaven opening to those who participated in the events of that first Good Friday. As pointed out by Marcel Dupré’s biographer Graham Steed, the last two notes of the flute melody in the final station, G# and B natural are the same two notes, enharmonically changed and inverted that began the first station. The work ends as if to say “As for the way of the wicked, he turneth it upside down.”

Eighteen themes or leit-motifs
employed by Dupré in his work.
Twelve are melodic and six are rhythmic.

Melodic Themes:

The Cross
(Stations II, V, VI, XI): Two (sometimes three) ascending or descending leaps of perfect fourths, preceded and followed by a major second, rising or falling as the case may be.
Suffering (Stations III, IX, XIV): A conjunct, descending triplet within the interval of a diminished fifth.
Redemption (Stations III, IV, V, VI, XIII): An ascending group of four stepwise notes.
Mary (Stations IV, XII): A descending major triad.
Compassion (Station VI): Two disjunct intervals of the third, the second repeated.
Pity (Stations VIII, XIV): An ascending group of four notes, preceded and followed by a dotted-note figure of repeated notes.
Consolation (Stations VIII, XII): A perfect fifth, ascending, the second note dotted; drop of a fourth, rising to the major third, sounded on a reed stop.
Persecution (Station IX): Three repeated notes followed by an ascending diminished triad.
Incarnation (final section of Station X): Minor thirds ascending, 2 by 2 with repetition of each second note, the repetition conveying the idea of suffering accepted.
Crucifixion (Station XI): The Cross motif inverted, and extended to a third downward jump of a perfect fourth. Agony: Similar to Redemption theme, with the second note dotted, and with a fifth note added to the upward progression.

The Fruits of Redemption (Station XIV): Suffering theme altered, the theme rising instead of falling.

Rhythmic Themes:

The Crowd (Station I): Intervals of major and minor thirds and fourths rising chromatically by semitones.
Barrabas (Station I): The rhythm of the name. (pronounced BAR-ra-bas)
Stumbling Steps or Jostling (Station II): Iambic short note on the beat followed by a dotted note.
Weariness (Stations III, VII, IX): Descending seconds, with repetition of the second note, suffering accepted.
Flagellation (Station X): Pairs of triplets made up of a descending fourth followed by a rising seventh, the second triplet starting on the last note of the first.
The Ropes (Station XIII): Four groups of triplets in a sliding chromatic outline.


Ken Cowan is one of North America’s finest concert organists. Praised for his dazzling artistry, impeccable technique and imaginative programming by audiences and critics alike, he maintains a rigorous performing schedule which takes him to major concert venues and churches in America, Canada, Europe, and Asia.

Recent feature performances have included appearances at Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa California, Philadelphia’s Verizon Hall, Spivey Hall, and Walt Disney Concert Hall, as well as concerts in Germany and Korea. In addition, Mr. Cowan has been a featured artist in recent years at the national conventions of the American Guild of Organists held in Los Angeles and Minneapolis, has performed at many regional conventions of the AGO, and has been featured at several conventions of the Organ Historical Society and the Royal Canadian College of Organists.

Ken received the Master’s degree and Artist Diploma from the Yale School of Music/Institute of Sacred Music, studying organ with Thomas Murray. Prior to attending Yale, he graduated with a Bachelor of Music degree from the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia where he studied with John Weaver. His major teacher during high school years was James Bigham, Organist/Choirmaster at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, in Buffalo, NY, which is not far from his hometown Thorold, Ontario, Canada.

In 2012 Mr. Cowan joined the keyboard faculty of the Shepherd School of Music at Rice University as Associate Professor and head of the organ program. Previous positions have included Associate Professor of Organ at Westminster Choir College of Rider University in Princeton, NJ, where he was awarded the 2008 Rider University Distinguished Teaching Award, and Associate Organist and Artist in Residence at Saint Bartholomew’s Church in New York City

The Rev. Alison L. Boden, Ph.D. has served as Dean of Religious Life and of the Chapel at Princeton University since August 2007. Dean Boden is the author of numerous articles and chapters on religion and social justice in addition to a book, Women’s Rights and Religious Practice (Palgrave 2007). Her course offerings have included such topics as religion and human rights, the rights of women, the history and phenomenology of prayer, and religion and violence. She has served in an advisory capacity to a variety of non-governmental organizations and is an ordained minister in the United Church of Christ.

Good Friday Message - God Is Love

After a brutal night
begun on capture, then
purgerous inquisition,
Jesus was scourged,
marched wounded
under his cross
up Jerusalem's
stony steeps.

His visage marred,
spit upon by haters,
bearing broken body,
wounded and despised,
hailed as Lord a week
before, mercilessly led
up Golgotha' s
weeping Hill.

Crucified mid-morning,
crowned in thorns,
jered and mocked,
hung creation's Savior
forsaken, forgiving,
dying mid-afternoon,
wept by mom, and
disciples forlorn.

Jesus dead body
was taken down,
cleansed, dressed,
and laid in another's
cold tomb three days,
until Sunday morning
met an atoning dawn
and empty tomb.

- r.e. slater
April 12, 2020
*Isaiah 52.13-53.12

@copyright R.E. Slater Publications
all rights reserved

ISAIAH 52.13 - 53.12

The Exalted Servant

13 Behold, My servant will prosper,
He will be high and lifted up and greatly exalted.
14 Just as many were astonished at you, My people,
So His appearance was marred more than any man
And His form more than the sons of men.
15 Thus He will sprinkle many nations,
Kings will shut their mouths on account of Him;
For what had not been told them they will see,
And what they had not heard they will understand.

The Suffering Servant

53 Who has believed our message?
And to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?
2 For He grew up before Him like a tender shoot,
And like a root out of parched ground;
He has no stately form or majesty
That we should look upon Him,
Nor appearance that we should be attracted to Him.
3 He was despised and forsaken of men,
A man of sorrows and acquainted with grief;
And like one from whom men hide their face
He was despised, and we did not esteem Him.

4 Surely our griefs He Himself bore,
And our sorrows He carried;
Yet we ourselves esteemed Him stricken,
Smitten of God, and afflicted.
5 But He was pierced through
for our transgressions,
He was crushed for our iniquities;
The chastening for our well-being fell upon Him,
And by His scourging we are healed.
6 All of us like sheep have gone astray,
Each of us has turned to his own way;
But the Lord has caused the iniquity of us all
To fall on Him.

7 He was oppressed and He was afflicted,
Yet He did not open His mouth;
Like a lamb that is led to slaughter,
And like a sheep that is silent before its shearers,
So He did not open His mouth.
8 By oppression and judgment He was taken away;
And as for His generation, who considered
That He was cut off out of the land of the [s]living
For the transgression of my people,
to whom the stroke was due?
9 His grave was assigned with wicked men,
Yet He was with a rich man in His death,
Because He had done no violence,
Nor was there any deceit in His mouth.

10 But the Lord was pleased
To crush Him, putting Him to grief;
If He would render Himself as a guilt offering,
He will see His offspring,
He will prolong His days,
And the good pleasure of the Lord
will prosper in His hand.
11 As a result of the anguish of His soul,
He will see it and be satisfied;
By His knowledge the Righteous One,
My Servant, will justify the many,
As He will bear their iniquities.
12 Therefore, I will allot Him a portion with the great,
And He will divide the booty with the strong;
Because He poured out Himself to death,
And was numbered with the transgressors;
Yet He Himself bore the sin of many,
And interceded for the transgressors.


1 And straightway in the morning the chief priests
with the elders and scribes, and the whole council,
held a consultation, and bound Jesus,
and carried him away,
and delivered him up to Pilate.

2 And Pilate asked him, Art thou the King of the Jews?
And he answering saith unto him, Thou sayest.

3 And the chief priests accused him of many things.

4 And Pilate again asked him, saying, Answerest thou nothing?
behold how many things they accuse thee of.

5 But Jesus no more answered anything; insomuch that Pilate marvelled.

6 Now at the feast he used to release unto them one prisoner,
whom they asked of him.

7 And there was one called Barabbas, [lying] bound with them that had
made insurrection, men who in the insurrection had committed murder.

8 And the multitude went up and began to ask him
[to do] as he was wont to do unto them.

9 And Pilate answered them, saying, Will ye that I
release unto you the King of the Jews?

10 For he perceived that for envy the chief priests had delivered him up.

11 But the chief priests stirred up the multitude,
that he should rather release Barabbas unto them.

12 And Pilate again answered and said unto them,
What then shall I do unto him whom ye call the King of the Jews?

13 And they cried out again, Crucify him.

14 And Pilate said unto them, Why, what evil hath he done?
But they cried out exceedingly, Crucify him.

15 And Pilate, wishing to content the multitude,
released unto them Barabbas, and delivered Jesus, 
hen he had scourged him, to be crucified.

16 And the soldiers led him away within the court,
which is the Praetorium; and they call together the whole band.

17 And they clothe him with purple, and platting a crown of thorns,
they put it on him;

18 and they began to salute him, Hail, King of the Jews!

19 And they smote his head with a reed, and spat upon him,
and bowing their knees worshipped him.

20 And when they had mocked him, they took off from him the purple,
and put on him his garments. And they lead him out to crucify him.

21 And they compel one passing by, Simon of Cyrene,
coming from the country, the father of Alexander and Rufus, 
to go [with them], that he might bear his cross.

22 And they brought him unto the place Golgotha,
which is, being interpreted, The place of a skull.

23 And they offered him wine mingled with myrrh: but he received it not.

24 And they crucify him, and part his garments among them, 
casting lots upon them, what each should take.

25 And it was the third hour, and they crucified him.

26 And the superscription of his accusation
 was written over, THE KING OF THE JEWS.

27 And with him they crucify two robbers;
one on his right hand, and one on his left.

28 [And the scripture was fulfilled, which saith,
 And he was reckoned with transgressors.]

29 And they that passed by railed on him, wagging their heads,
and saying, Ha! Thou that destroyest the temple, and buildest 
it in three days,

30 save thyself, and come down from the cross.

31 In like manner also the chief priests mocking [him] among themselves
with the scribes said, He saved others; himself he cannot save.

32 Let the Christ, the King of Israel, now come down from 
the cross, that we may see and believe. And they that were
crucified with him reproached him.

33 And when the sixth hour was come, there was darkness
over the whole land until the ninth hour.

34 And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice,
Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani? which is, being interpreted,
My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?

35 And some of them that stood by, when they heard it, said,
Behold, he calleth Elijah.

36 And one ran, and filling a sponge full of vinegar, put it on a reed,
and gave him to drink, saying, Let be; let us see whether
Elijah cometh to take him down.

37 And Jesus uttered a loud voice, and gave up the ghost.

38 And the veil of the temple was rent in two from the top to the bottom.

39 And when the centurion, who stood by over
against him, saw that he so gave up the ghost, he said,
Truly this man was the Son of God.

40 And there were also women beholding from afar: among whom
[were] both Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James
the less and of Joses, and Salome;

41 who, when he was in Galilee, followed him, and ministered unto him;
and many other women that came up with him unto Jerusalem.

42 And when even was now come, because it was the Preparation,
that is, the day before the sabbath,

43 there came Joseph of Arimathaea, a councillor of honorable estate, 
who also himself was looking for the kingdom of God; and he boldly
went in unto Pilate, and asked for the body of Jesus.

44 And Pilate marvelled if he were already dead: and calling unto him 
the centurion, he asked him whether he had been any while dead.

45 And when he learned it of the centurion, he granted the corpse to Joseph.

46 And he bought a linen cloth, and taking him down, wound him
in the linen cloth, and laid him in a tomb which had been hewn out
of a rock; and he rolled a stone against the door of the tomb.

47 And Mary Magdalene and Mary the [mother] of Joses
beheld where he was laid.

Best Easter Songs 2020 - HE IS RISEN - 
Nonstop Easter Sunday Songs

Easter Day Message - Now A Green Blade Rises

The crucifixion was Empire's NO to justice;
and it's YES to domination and repression.

The resurrection is God's YES to liberation and goodwill;
and God's NO to Empire.

Now The Green Blade Riseth

Hallelujah! Jesus is Risen! These grand words we speak to one another today were words but spoken in private among Jesus' followers as religious leaders of Israel's temple backed by Rome's dutiful legates searched for Jesus' seditious followers daring to question the faith institute and rule of their day. 

We know through the gospels Jesus' ministries to be one of reversals. Wherever corruptible faith and religious injustice thrived Jesus stood against it. His kingdom was both spiritual and challenged the faith leadership of his day. His was the upside down kingdom which called out sin, hypocrisy, lies, and corruption. For that He was silenced and crucified. Sinful man did not want to hear what God's love would require of them. 

But the God who loves could not be silenced. Jesus arose from the dead to speak through those whose voices asked with Him, "Whom will you chose? The god of mammon or Me? The god of hypocrisy or Me? The god of lies and corruption or Me?" If it seems like we live in the times of Jesus it means that man has not changed either in his religious arrogance or his hypocritical rule. It is still corruptible, still full of wind and fury, still darkened by lies and folly. To be a Jesus follower is as difficult today as it always has been, even though we describe this post-Jesus era as the Age of the Church.

Yet the church is as corruptible now today as Israel's religion was back then. Ever era seems to go through its own "End Times" even as our Lord experienced in His life and death. Yet, God's faithful still raise the banners of God's love, hope and mercy though these same banners are despised and cast down by those goats who cry "Lord, Lord, when did we ever do such a thing?" In reply, the hosts of God will say, "When love was needed and you showed none; when aide and effort required words of hope your hearts were shut; when forgiveness cried mercy and you offered none. Your words and your works are your judgment."

The religious of Jesus' day were as darken then of understanding as they are today having thrown in their lots with the Empire of its era. Who, having declared a gospel of violence and judgment, find it fallen upon their own head though they decry their innocence. On this Easter morning, to give witness to Jesus' resurrection is to stand against the powers and principalities of the world of today. Including its empire preachers and rulers bespeaking their greatness and sanctimonious holiness while clothed in rags of self-righteousness, legalism, pride, and deception.

Yes, Jesus has risen indeed! But no longer stand ye at the tomb and weep. Nor wait in the Upper Room to be called forth by the Holy Spirit. For the God of love has risen, and cries out with clarion voice to arise and be counted as one of His crucified faithful. That the gospel of Christ demands confessing our prejudices, hatreds and anger; to repent of our sins; to love the stranger around us; and be willing to forgive, to seek, and to serve the despised and forgotten till He comes again as Lord of Lords over all empires of this world whether religious or not.

What Does Easter Mean, by Gordon Sharp