We continue to celebrate Blessed Titus Brandsma (1881-1942) whose 75th anniversary of martyrdom at Dachau was marked on July 26th, 2017. Dutch Carmelite, educator, journalist and modern mystic, Brandsma’s life demonstrated an intimate relationship between mysticism and a firm commitment in the world to the dignity of the human person. Labeled “that dangerous little friar” by his enemies, the wisdom of his meditations on the Stations of the Cross depicted by the Belgian painter Albert Servaes will be a good spiritual companion for us this Lent.
Brandsma’s meditations on the Passion stand wholly in the tradition of St. Teresa of Avila’s vivid use of the imagination in order to evoke the reality of Jesus sufferings. Titus’ sincere sorrow and love shine through these meditations, the portent of his own Christ-like passion and death at Dachau.
In age of unprecedented violence and injustice, the crucifix takes on renewed meaning as the symbol of arbitrary violence, unjust condemnation and suppression of the protest of the weak by powerful vested interests. Jesus tortured and silenced has a familiar look to the modern person. Thus, the crucified Christ is once again finding a place in the prayer of a people focused on the resurrected Christ; the Stations of the Cross are becoming a framework for praying for the passions of today’s world.
We invite you to join us twice per week this Lent as we reflect with Brandsma on the Stations of the Cross.