According to tradition, after the Jesus died, Our Lady used to visit those places where Our Lord shed his blood (the way of the cross), She meditated on his suffering for us. Then some other faithful followers of Jesus did the same. The followers of Jesus told the story of his passion, death and resurrection. When pilgrims came to see Jerusalem, they were anxious to see the sites where Jesus was. These sites become important holy connections with Jesus.
Eventually, following in the footsteps of the Lord, along the way of the cross, became a part of the pilgrimage visit. The stations, as we know them today, came about when it was no longer easy or even possible to visit the holy sites. In the 1500’s, villages all over Europe started creating “replicas” of the way of the cross, with small shrines commemorating the places along the route in Jerusalem. Eventually, these shrines became the set of 14 stations we now know and were placed in almost every Catholic Church in the world.
The Stations of the Cross are as follows:
Jesus is condemned to die.
Jesus receives the cross.
Jesus falls for the first time while bearing the cross.
Jesus meets his mother, the Virgin Mary.
Simon bears the cross for Jesus for a short period of time.
Veronica wipes Jesus’ face.
Jesus falls for the second time.
Jesus meets the women of Jerusalem.
Jesus falls for the third time.
Jesus is stripped of his clothes.
Jesus is crucified.
Jesus is removed from the cross.
Jesus is entombed.
The way of the cross, in Our Lady of Snows Kallikulam Church is created in a symbolic way. The first station is locally called “Periya Kurusadi” (major cross station) located five hundred meter south from the church. This is the site, from where, six young people saw the apparition of Our Lady on the hill top. The other stations are located on the way of the hill and the last station is located near to the apparition site on the hill top. The cross station on the top of the hill is known as Cross Station – Our Lady of Sorrows. On 25th, December 1865, Fr. Victor set a Cross at this place. Now, statues of the Risen Lord and Our Lady of Sorrows are placed here.
On Good Friday liturgy service conducted in three parts, the Liturgy of the Word, the Veneration of the Cross, and Holy Communion. The Liturgy of the Word and the Veneration of the Cross conducted in the Church. Then the Stations of the Cross prayed through cross the stations. It starts from the main station and go through cross stations located on the hill. Holy Communion service is conducted in the Our Lady of Lourdes grotto. These services symbolically reflect the crucifixion of Jesus Christ and his death at Calvary.