Your Holy Week Retreat, Part II – Jesus our Priest

Luke’s Passion account provides three wrenching descriptions of Jesus at prayer.   The first occurs in the Garden of Gethsemane.  The second occurs as He is being nailed to the cross.  The third occurs while he is hanging on the cross.  

As you slowly and prayerfully consider each description of Jesus praying, using your imagination to see and hear every detail of the scene, what impresses you the most?  What detail makes you want to speak to Him?  What do you want to say?

I) Jesus prays in the Garden of Gethsemane

Then going out, he went, as was his custom, to the Mount of Olives, and the disciples followed him. When he arrived at the place he said to them,  “Pray that you may not undergo the test.” After withdrawing about a stone’s throw from them and kneeling, he prayed, saying,

“Father, if you are willing, take this cup away from me; still, not my will but yours be done.”

And to strengthen him an angel from heaven appeared to him.

He was in such agony and he prayed so fervently that his sweat became like drops of blood falling on the ground.

When he rose from prayer and returned to his disciples, he found them sleeping from grief.

II) Jesus prays while being nailed to the cross

When they came to the place called the Skull, they crucified him and the criminals there, one on his right, the other on his left. Then Jesus said,

“Father, forgive them, they know not what they do.”

III) Jesus prays while on the cross

It was now about noon and darkness came over the whole land until three in the afternoon because of an eclipse of the sun. Then the veil of the temple was torn down the middle. Jesus cried out in a loud voice, 

“Father, into your hands I commend my spirit.”

And when he had said this he breathed his last.