THE CRUCIFIXION OF OUR LORD. Meditation on the Passion of Our Lord Jesus Christ 6. Summary vid + full text

Meditation on the Passion of
Our Lord Jesus Christ 6.
Summary vid + full text





Now they are crucifying Our Lord, and with him two thieves, one on his right and one on his left. Meanwhile, Jesus says: “Father, forgive them for they do not know what they are doing” (Lk 23:34). It is Love that has brought Jesus to Calvary. And once on the Cross, all his gestures and all his words are of love, a love both calm and strong. With a gesture befitting an Eternal Priest, without father or mother, without lineage (cf. Hb 7:3), he opens his arms to the whole human race. With the hammerblows with which Jesus is being nailed, there resound the prophetic words of Holy Scripture: “They have pierced my hands and feet. I can count all my bones, and they stare and gloat over me” (Ps 21:17-18). “My people, what have I done to thee, or in what have I saddened thee? Answer me!” (Mi 6:3).

And we, our soul rent with sorrow, say to Jesus in all sincerity: I am yours and I give my whole self to You; gladly do I nail myself to your Cross, ready to be in the cross-roads of this world a soul dedicated to You, to your glory, to the work of Redemption, the co-redemption of the whole human race.

 -St. Josemaria, The Way of the Cross, 11th station.



Our Lord didn’t want to hold anything back but lovingly chose to shed the last drop of His Sacred Blood in order to save us. Look at Christ: total self-giving, supreme oblation, Love! We must not forget that the way of love is a way of sacrifice.

  • If we wish to be true followers of Christ, we should not be surprised to find the Cross along the way. To find the Cross is to find happiness because it is where we could find Christ.
  • But in order to find Christ on the Cross, we must learn how to join our suffering with God’s will: “May thy most just, lovable Will be done, be fulfilled, be praised and exalted above all things for ever, amen! (St. Josemaria)
  • With this acceptance full of trust of Christ’s Cross, there will be serenity in us, a deep interior peace, a love which is ready for whatever sacrifice, and thus joy for we have the conviction that it is Christ who will carry it for us.
  • Lord, teach me how to “love sacrifice;” for “it is a fountain of interior life”, of intimacy with God.  Teach me how to “love the Cross,” for it “is an altar of sacrifice”, (St. Josemaria)  of salvation, of virtue, of holiness and of Love!


Thompson and Harrub provide us a summary of the historical and medical details of the Crucifixion and Death of Our Lord:

  • “The Jewish historian Josephus aptly described crucifixion, following the siege of Jerusalem by the Romans in A.D. 66-70, as ‘THE MOST WRETCHED OF DEATHS’ (War of the Jews, 7.203). The apostle Paul penned these beautiful words describing Christ: ‘And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross (Philippians 2:8). Knowing that He had to continue on for humanity’s sake, a beaten and scourged Jesus began that long walk to the site of His death…Golgotha is the common name of the location at which Christ was crucified. In Greek letters, this word represents an Aramaic word, Gulgaltha (Hebrew Gulgoleth), meaning ‘a skull.’ The word Calvary (Latin Calvaria; English calvaria—skullcap) also means ‘a skull.’ Calvaria (and the Greek Kranion) are equivalents for the original Golgotha. This particular area was located just outside the city on a rounded knoll that has the appearance of a bare skull. It was here, flanked by two thieves, that Christ would bear the sins of the world. The Roman guards who accompanied Him in the procession were required to stay with Him until they could substantiate His death (Bloomquist, 1964; Barbet, 1953, p. 50).
  • Having suffered considerable blood loss from the scourging, Jesus likely was in a DEHYDRATED STATE when He finally reached the top of this small knoll. Jesus was offered two drinks at Golgotha. The first—a drugged wine (i.e., mixed with myrrh) that served as a mild analgesic to deaden some of the pain—was offered immediately upon His arrival (Shroud, 1871; Davis, 1965, p. 186). However, after having tasted it, Christ refused the concoction. HE CHOSE TO FACE DEATH WITH A CLEAR MIND SO HE COULD CONQUER IT WILLFULLY AS HE SUBMITTED HIMSELF TO THE CRUELTY OF THE CROSS. ‘And when they came to a place called Golgotha, they offered him wine to drink, mixed with gall; but when he tasted it, he would not drink it’ (Matthew 27:33-34). This particular drink was intended to dull the pain in preparation for the next step of crucifixion—the nailing of the hands and feet. Thus, it would have been around this time that a battered, bleeding Jesus was thrown to the ground and nailed to the cross.


  • …Clearly, from the text we see that Christ’s hands and feet were nailed to the cross. Archaeological data indicate that the specific nails used during the time of Christ’s crucifixion WERE TAPERED IRON SPIKES FIVE TO SEVEN INCHES LONG WITH A SQUARE SHAFT APPROXIMATELY THREE-EIGHTHS OF AN INCH ACROSS (Haas, 1970; Tzaferis, 1970; Clements, 1992, p. 108). Various studies have demonstrated that the bony palms cannot support the weight of a body hanging from them (e.g., Barbet, 1953). The weight of the body would tear quite easily through the lumbricals and flexor tendons—breaking the metacarpal bones as the nails pulled free—allowing the body to fall to the Earth. However, in ancient terminology, the wrist was considered to be part of the hand (Barbet, 1953, p. 106; Davis, 1965, p. 184; Major, 1999, 19:86). At the base of the wrist bones, the strong fibrous band of the flexor retinaculum binds down the flexor tendons. Iron spikes driven through the flexor retinaculum easily could have passed between bony elements and held the weight of a man. This location would require that the nail be placed through either: (1) the space between the radius and carpal bones (lunate and scaphoid bones); or (2) between the two rows of carpal bones (Barbet, 1953, p. 106; DePasquale and Burch, 1963, p. 434; Lumpkin, 1978; Netter, 1994, p. 426).
  • A SPIKE DRIVEN THROUGH THIS LOCATION, HOWEVER, ALMOST CERTAINLY WOULD CAUSE THE MEDIAN NERVE OR PERIPHERAL BRANCHES TO BE PIERCED , resulting in a condition known as CAUSALGIA… Any damage to this nerve would have caused EXTRAORDINARY PAIN TO RADIATE UP THE ARM, THEN THROUGH THE AXILLA, TO THE SPINAL CORD, AND FINALLY TO THE BRAIN. Primary arteries travel on the medial and lateral aspects of the wrist, and therefore would be spared if the spike had been driven into this location. [Scientific studies—using volunteer college students—have shown that people suspended from crosses with their arms outstretched in the traditional manner depicted in religious art have little problem breathing (Zugibe, 1984, p. 9). Thus, the oft’-quoted idea that death on the cross results from asphyxiation would be a factor only if the hands were nailed in an elevated fashion above the head of the victim.] And so, with His hands firmly nailed to the cross and His back bleeding and emaciated, Christ was hoisted onto the rough-hewn, upright stake.


  • THE PAIN CHRIST MUST HAVE EXPERIENCED UP TO THIS POINT WOULD HAVE BEEN EXCRUCIATING, AND YET THE ROMAN SOLDIERS WERE ABOUT TO DELIVER EVEN MORE. There were many ways to nail the feet to the stipes, but most required the knees to be flexed and rotated laterally. It is likely that the spikes were driven through either the: (1) tarsometatarsal joint (between the metatarsal bones and cuneiform bones); or (2) the transverse tarsal joint (between the calcaneus and cuboid or navicular bones). While this placement undoubtedly would prevent the bones of Christ’s feet from breaking, it nevertheless would cause severe injury to the deep peroneal nerve or lateral plantar nerve (and artery), and certainly would pierce the quadratus plantae muscle (Netter, 1994, p. 509).
  • IT WOULD NOT BE UNCOMMON BY THIS TIME FOR INSECTS TO BURROW INTO OPEN WOUNDS OR ORIFICES (SUCH AS THE NOSE, MOUTH, EARS, AND EYES) OF A CRUCIFIED VICTIM; ADDITIONALLY BIRDS OF PREY FREQUENTLY WERE KNOWN TO FEED OFF THE TATTERED WOUNDS (Cooper, 1883). It was in this position, with His precious blood seeping down the cross, that Christ uttered the amazing statement: ‘Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do’ (Luke 23:34).


  • Even though blood poured from His lacerated back, ONE MAJOR PATHOPHYSIOLOGICAL IMPAIRMENT JESUS FACED DURING CRUCIFIXION WAS NORMAL RESPIRATION (i.e., breathing). Maximum inhalation would have been possible only when the body weight was supported by the nailed wrists of the outstretched arms. When Christ first was lifted onto the splinter-covered surface of the cross, His arms and body were stretched out in the form of a ‘Y.’ A momentary ‘T’ position would be required to allow proper support for inhalation. Thus, in order to breathe He was required to lift His body using His nailed wrists for leverage. Exhalation would be impossible in this position, and the immense pain placed on the wrists quickly would become too great; therefore, Christ would have to slump back into a ‘Y’ position to exhale. Jesus would be forced to continue alternating between the ‘Y’ and ‘T’ positions with every breath, trying all the while not to reopen the wounds He had received from the scourging. Fatigued muscles eventually would begin to spasm, and Christ would become exhausted from these repeated tasks, slumping permanently into the shape of a ‘Y.’ In this position, chest and respiratory muscles soon would become paralyzed from the increased strain and pain. WITHOUT STRENGTH FOR BREATH, CHRIST’S BODY WOULD BEGIN TO SUFFER FROM ASPHYXIA.” Bert Thompson, Ph.D. and Brad Harrub, Ph.D. , in “An Examination of the Medical Evidence for the Physical Death of Christ”in

“Foolish child, look: all this… He has suffered it all for you… And for me. Can you keep from crying?” St. Josemaria, Holy Rosary, 5th Sorrowful Mystery.


Dear friends: “To love the Cross means being able to put oneself out, gladly, for the love of Christ, though it’s hard — and because it’s hard. You have enough experience to know that this is not a contradiction.” (St. Josemaria, Furrow, n. 519).

Dear Lord, our immense gratitude to your unfathomable love. May we learn how to correspond to your generous sacrifice for our salvation by abandoning our old ways and faithfully living the new life which you have gained for us through your Passion and Death on the Cross.

Mother, Our Lord, out of love, entrusted us to your care. Grant us the same fortitude so as to be always beside Our Lord on the Cross. May we as well be loving children of yours, as Our Lord entrusted you to us at the foot of the Cross. Amen.

Cordially inviting you to like to help more people in their Catholic faith and life. Thanks! Fr. Rolly Arjonillo, priest of Opus Dei.


  1. THE AGONY IN THE GARDEN. Summary vid + full text:
  2. THE JEWISH AND ROMAN TRIALS. Summary vid + full text:
  3. THE SCOURGING AT THE PILLAR. Summary vid + full text:
  4. THE CROWNING WITH THORNS. Summary vid + full text:
  5. THE CARRYING OF THE CROSS. Summary vid + full text:




3 replies »

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


Top Posts & Pages



Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 1,263 other followers

Follow Catholics Striving for Holiness on

Blog Stats

  • 1,214,015 hits


ST. AUGUSTINE ON THE ASCENSION OF OUR LORD.. From a sermon by Saint Augustine, bishop (caps mine). Today our Lord Jesus Christ ascended into heaven; let our hearts ascend with him. Listen to the words of the Apostle: If you have risen with Christ, set your hearts on the things that are above where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God; seek the things that are above, not the things that are on earth. FOR JUST AS HE REMAINED WITH US EVEN AFTER HIS ASCENSION, SO WE TOO ARE ALREADY IN HEAVEN WITH HIM, even though what is promised us has not yet been fulfilled in our bodies. CHRIST IS NOW EXALTED ABOVE THE HEAVENS, BUT HE STILL SUFFERS ON EARTH ALL THE PAIN THAT WE, THE MEMBERS OF HIS BODY, HAVE TO BEAR. He showed this when he cried out from above: Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me? and when he said: I was hungry and you gave me food. WHY DO WE ON EARTH NOT STRIVE TO FIND REST WITH HIM IN HEAVEN EVEN NOW, THROUGH THE FAITH, HOPE AND LOVE THAT UNITES US TO HIM? WHILE IN HEAVEN HE IS ALSO WITH US; AND WE WHILE ON EARTH ARE WITH HIM. HE IS HERE WITH US BY HIS DIVINITY, HIS POWER AND HIS LOVE. WE CANNOT BE IN HEAVEN, AS HE IS ON EARTH, BY DIVINITY, BUT IN HIM, WE CAN BE THERE BY LOVE. HE DID NOT LEAVE HEAVEN WHEN HE CAME DOWN TO US; NOR DID HE WITHDRAW FROM US WHEN HE WENT UP AGAIN INTO HEAVEN. The fact that he was in heaven even while he was on earth is borne out by his own statement: No one has ever ascended into heaven except the one who descended from heaven, the Son of Man, who is in heaven. These words are explained by our oneness with Christ, for he is our head and we are his body. No one ascended into heaven except Christ because we also are Christ: he is the Son of Man by his union with us, and we by our union with him are the sons of God. So the Apostle says: Just as the human body, which has many members, is a unity, because all the different members make one body, so is it also with Christ. He too has many members, but one body. OUT OF COMPASSION FOR US HE DESCENDED FROM HEAVEN, AND ALTHOUGH HE ASCENDED ALONE, WE ALSO ASCEND, BECAUSE WE ARE IN HIM BY GRACE. Thus, no one but Christ descended and no one but Christ ascended; not because there is n
OUR PRAYER FOR ALL MOTHERS. In some countries, especially in the Philippines. Mother's day will be celebrated this Sunday, May 13, 2018. Let us thank God with prayers and deeds for giving us the wonderful and irreplaceable gift of having our mother. Let us thank all mothers as well for all the love and sacrifice you have given us your children, but above all for the gift of life. Fr. Rolly Arjonillo
ASCENSION OF OUR LORD: THE GLORIFICATION OF THE SACRED HUMANITY OF CHRIST. "Now the Master is teaching his disciples: he has opened their minds to understand the Scriptures, and he appoints them witnesses of his life and his miracles, of his Passion and Death, and of the glory of his resurrection (Luke 24:45 and 48). Then he brings them out as far as the outskirts of Bethany and blesses them. And as he does so, he withdraws from them and is carried up to heaven (Luke 24:51) until a cloud takes him out of their sight (Acts 1:9). Jesus has gone to the Father. Two Angels in white garments approach us and say, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking up to heaven?” (Acts 1:11). Peter and the others go back to Jerusalem — cum gaudio magno — “with great joy” (Luke 24:52). It is fitting that the sacred humanity of Christ should receive the homage, the praise and adoration of all the hierarchies of the Angels and of all the legions of the Blessed in Heaven. But you and I feel like orphans: we are sad, and we go to Mary for consolation." -St. Josemaria, The Holy Rosary, 2nd Glorious Mystery
OUR SINCERE GRATITUDE AND PRAYERS TO MOTHER MARY AND TO ALL THE MOTHERS IN THE WORLD! O Mother of mothers, you are yourself one. Pray for, guide and protect all the mothers in the world, so that they may love their children in the same way you loved your Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ. HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY MOTHER MARY AND TO ALL OF YOU, DEAR MOMS! THANK YOU VERY MUCH FOR YOUR LOVE AND SACRIFICE! WE LOVE YOU VERY MUCH! Fr. Rolly Arjonillo
OUR PRAYER FOR ALL MOTHERS. As we prepare for Mothers' Day this year which falls on May 6 or 13, 2018, let us thank God with prayers and deeds for giving us the wonderful and irreplaceable gift of having our mother. Fr. Rolly Arjonillo
TOMORROW IS THE 1ST SATURDAY OF THE MONTH. Here is a short prayer to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. May we honor and love her, imitating her Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ, and as we do, let us pray for the conversion of many souls and in reparation for the sins of humanity. Fr. Rolly Arjonillo.
HUMILITY: NECESSARY TO PLEASE GOD. St Peter the Apostle speaks to us of the need to be humble if we are to please God. “Clothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another, for "God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble, 1 Pet 5:5.” Nothing can separate us from God as much as pride. • A heart that is filled with self-love has no room for God. • The holiness we seek can be summed up in the words that John the Baptist spoke of Christ: “He must increase, but I must decrease.” Our Lord's life must increase within us until we become "other Christs", and our intellect and our will, our powers and our affections, all we are and all we do, become entirely his. • Humility is essential if we are to achieve complete self-giving, and if we are to become channels by which God's grace can reach mankind. As St. Josemaria wrote: “Let us be humble. Let us seek nothing but the glory of God. Our life of silent and hidden self-giving should be a constant act of humility. Humility is the foundation for our whole life, the means and prerequisite for our effectiveness. Pride and vanity might attract us to the vocation of a Chinese lantern, which shines and sparkles for everyone to admire, but which lasts only one night and then goes out, leaving no trace behind. Vita vestra est abscondita cum Christo in Deo. (Your life is hidden with Christ in God. What God thinks, not what other people think, is what matters.” These words of St. Josemaria light up our whole life. • Without humility, everything we do would be sterile. If we allowed self-sufficiency and pride into our interior life, dialogue with God would be impossible. • In our apostolate, which should be based on friendship, pride would put a barrier between us and others, and make it impossible for us to help or understand them. • Our cheerfulness also depends on our being humble, because it is humility that enables us to lead an authentic existence, in which we aim to serve God and others, but without being worried about appearing less than perfect, and without letting our faults upset us. “Humility prevents us from becoming discouraged at our own faults. Our Father God knows what kind of clay w
BLESSED POPE PAUL VI ON MAY, THE MONTH OF MARY. “The month of May is … a month which the piety of the faithful has long dedicated to Mary, the Mother of God. Our heart rejoices at the thought of the moving tribute of faith and love which will soon be paid to the Queen of Heaven in every corner of the earth. For this is the month during which Christians, in their churches and their homes, offer the Virgin Mother more fervent and loving acts of homage and veneration; and it is the month in which a greater abundance of God's merciful gifts comes down to us from our Mother's throne. We are delighted and consoled by this pious custom associated with the month of May, which pays honor to the Blessed Virgin and brings such rich benefits to the Christian people. Since Mary is rightly to be regarded as the way by which we are led to Christ, the person who encounters Mary cannot help but encounter Christ likewise. For what other reason do we continually turn to Mary except to seek the Christ in her arms, to seek our Savior in her, through her, and with her? To Him men are to turn amid the anxieties and perils of this world, urged on by duty and driven by the compelling needs of their heart, to find a haven of salvation, a transcendent fountain of life.” Blessed Pope Paul VI, Enc. Mense Maio, nn. 1-2 CSFH PHOTO of La Virgen y el Niño, by Armando Pareja
ST. JOSEMARIA ON THE HOLY EUCHARIST Jesus has remained within the Eucharist for love... of you. He has remained, knowing how men would treat him... and how you would treat him. He has remained so that you could eat him, so that you could visit him and tell him what's happening to you; and so that you could talk to him as you pray beside the Tabernacle, and as you receive him sacramentally; and so that you could fall in love more and more each day, and make other souls, many souls, follow the same path. (The Forge, 887) The humility of Jesus: in Bethlehem, in Nazareth, on Calvary. But more humiliation and more self-abasement still in the Sacred Host: more than in the stable, more than in Nazareth, more than on the Cross. That is why I must love the Mass so much ('Our' Mass, Jesus...) (The Way, n. 533) When you approach the Tabernacle remember that he has been awaiting you for twenty centuries. (The Way, 537) There he is: King of Kings, and Lord of Lords, hidden in the Bread. To this extreme has he humbled himself through love for you. (The Way, 538) Jesus has remained in the Sacred Host for us so as to stay by our side, to sustain us, to guide us. And love can only be repaid with love. How could we not turn to the Blessed Sacrament each day, even if it is only for a few minutes, to bring him our greetings and our love as children and as brothers? (Furrow, 686) Go perseveringly to the Tabernacle, either bodily or in your heart, so as to feel safe and calm: but also in order to feel loved... and to love. (The Forge, 837) Keep struggling, so that the Holy Sacrifice of the Altar really becomes the centre and the root of your interior life, and so your whole day will turn into an act of worship — an extension of the Mass you have attended and a preparation for the next. Your whole day will then be an act of worship that overflows in aspirations, visits to the Blessed Sacrament and the offering up of your professional work and your family life. (The Forge, 69) Build up a gigantic faith in the Holy Eucharist. Be filled with wonder before this ineffable reality. We have God with us; we can receive him every day and, if we want to, we can speak intimately with him
TOMORROW IS THE FIRST FRIDAY OF THE MONTH (MAY 4, 2018). SHORT PRAYER OF CONSECRATION TO THE SACRED HEART. Sacred Heart of Jesus, filled with infinite love, broken by my ingratitude, pierced by my sins, yet loving me still, accept the consecration that I make to You, of all that I am and all that I have. Take every faculty of my soul and body, and draw me, day by day, nearer and nearer to Your Sacred Side, and there, as I can bear the lesson, teach me Your blessed ways. Amen.
GOD CALLS US ALL TO HOLINESS AND HE WILL GIVE US THE GRACE TO LIVE BY OUR MISSION. LET US HAVE RECOURSE TO THE SOURCES OF HIS GRACE. Pope Francis recently reminded us in Gaudete et exultate of our divince vocation to holiness. Yes, you and I as well, for "This is God's will, our sanctification" As such, we must not be afraid of holiness, but rather desire and strive for it, absolutely certain that God will provide us the graces we need in the means He has put within our reach: prayer, sacraments and sacrifice.Let us then have frequent recourse to the sources of His grace. Mother, Help of Christians, pray for us! Fr. Rolly Arjonillo.
%d bloggers like this: