Jesus' journey is at times brutal.  He has entered into the terrible experiences of rejection and injustice.  He has been whipped and beaten. His face shows the signs of his solidarity with all who have ever suffered injustice and vile, abusive treatment.  He encounters a compassionate, loving disciple who wipes the vulgar spit and mocking blood from his face.  On her veil, she discovers the image of his face - his gift to her.  And, for us to contemplate forever.
What does the face of Jesus hold for me?  What do I see, as I look deeply into his face?

Can I try to comfort the agony and pain? Can I embrace him, with his face so covered with his passion?

The veil I behold is a true icon of his gift of himself. This is for me.  In wonder and awe, I behold his face now wiped clean, and see the depth of his suffering in solidarity with all flesh.

I say what I can say, to express my gratitude.

V. We adore you, O Christ, and we praise you;

R. Because by your holy cross you have redeemed the world.

From Matthew chapter 25 vs 40

As often as you did it for one of my least brothers, you did it for me.

Anything we can do for anyone, Our Lord counts as done for Him. To help those in pain or trouble is always an act pleasing to God, one that will not go without a reward.

Jesus, you rewarded Veronica with the imprint of your face. Imprint your face dear Lord in our hearts, so we together with our family will work among the suffering people in our communities. Specially the lonely, the sick, the disabled, the ones without a voice – the refugees, the aged and the unborn. We love you Jesus.

 

 

"Plaiting a crown of thorns they put it on his head, and put a reed in his right hand. And kneeling before him they mocked him, saying, "Hail, King of the Jews!" And they spat upon him, and took the reed and struck him on the head. And when they had mocked him, they stripped him of the robe, and put his own clothes on him, and led him away to crucify him."  (St. Matthew 27.29-31)

Mary, Mother of Mercy ...

Veronica alone hastened to Christ in His Passion. Everyone else fled. Only you, Mary, with John and the Magdalen now remained, pressed back by the shields of the might of Rome.

Simon looks on, buttressing the Cross that would crush the Son, the Cross to which he came under the hands of violent men, but here another comes, not under duress, but compelled by compassion. From that profane furor of the fevered crowd, unheeded by steeled hearts of stone, she comes an angel with shadow from the fierce Semitic sun. A winding-cloth, as it were, spun from her veil and pressed past the thorns.

Veronica .... you are the vera icon — the true image — pressing your veil to Jesus' bleeding face you find it etched within your trembling hands. The image of the face of God! Vera icon in the midst of men!

You are an icon bearer twice in truth. In your hands the incorruptible face of God, in your heart the unblemished mirror of mercy, image of the Mother of Mercy and the Son of God. Vera icon in the midst of men!

Make of me, an icon, too, my God!  A Vera icon in the midst of men. A true image of the Mother, Son.

And Jesus cried out and said, "He who believes in me, believes not in me but in Him who sent me. And he who sees me sees Him who sent me. I have come as light into the world, that whoever believes in me may not remain in darkness. (St. John 12) Thou hast said, "Seek ye my face." My heart says to thee, "Thy face, LORD, do I seek." Hide not thy face from me. Turn not thy servant away in anger, thou who hast been my help. Cast me not off, forsake me not, O God of my salvation!   (Psalm 27)

O, Jesus , in this mirror of suffering, I also seek your face ...

O my Jesus, my suffering Savior, I see your face and I meet understanding, as I see my own pain and suffering reflected as if in a mirror.

I see, too, the faces of suffering humanity, waiting for a Veronica to show compassion and love.

Beauty is never hidden from those who love, they embrace the total person in the other.

"Lord I seek your face, hide not your face from me."

 

Meditation: 

Jesus, suddenly a woman comes out of the crowd. Her name is Veronica. You can see how she cares for you as she takes a cloth and begins to wipe the blood and sweat from your face. She can't do much, but she offers what little help she can.

As a child, sometimes I know someone could use a little help and understanding. They may be picked on or teased by others, or just sad or lonely. Sometimes I feel bad that others don't step in to help, but I don't help either.

As an adult, I notice the needs around me. Sometimes my own family members crave my attention, and I don't even seem to notice. Sometimes a co-worker, friend, or family member could use help or understanding, but I don't reach out to help lest I be criticized, or that they demand more of me than I'd like to give. 

My tender Jesus, Who didst deign to print Thy sacred face upon the cloth with which Veronica wiped the sweat from off Thy brow, print in my soul deep, I pray Thee, the lasting memory of Thy bitter pains.

Prayer

My Jesus, where were all the hundreds of peoples whose bodies and souls were healed by you? Where were they when You needed someone to give You the least sign of comfort? Ingratitude must have borne down upon Your heart and made the cross nearly impossible to carry. There are times I too feel all my efforts for Your Kingdom are futile and end in nothingness. Did your eyes roam through the crowd for the comfort of just one individual - one sign of pity - one sign of grief?

My heart thrills with a sad joy when I think of one woman, breaking away from fear and human respect and offeringYou her thin veil to wipe Your bleeding Face. Your loving heart, ever watching for the least sign of love, imprinted the Image of your torn Face upon it! How can You forget Yourself so completely and reward such a small act of kindness?

I must admit, I have been among those who were afraid to know You rather than like Veronica. She did not care if the whole world knew she loved You. Heartbroken Jesus, give me that quality of the soul so necessary to witness to spread Your Word - to tell all people of Your love for them. Send many into Your Vineyard so the people of all nations may receive the Good News. Imprint Your Divine Image upon my soul and let the thin veil of my human nature bear a perfect resemblance to your loving Spirit.
 

Dear Lord

it is your face that we seek. 
Veronica reminds us that you are present 
in every person who suffers 
and goes forward along his or her path to Golgotha. 
Lord, grant that we may find you in the poor, 
in the least of your brethren, 
in order to wipe away the tears of those who weep, 
to take care of those who suffer 
and to support those who are weak.

Lord, you teach us 
that a wounded and forgotten person 
loses neither worth nor dignity 
and remains a sign 
of your hidden presence in the world. 
Help us to wipe away from his or her face 
the marks of poverty and injustice, 
so that your image in him or her 
may be revealed and may shine forth.

We pray for those who are seeking your Face 
and who find it in those of the homeless, 
the poor and children exposed to violence and exploitation. 

1 Our Father 

1 Hail Mary 

1 Glory Be ...

O Jesus Crucified - for us you suffered - for us you died - On the Cross

Daily Meditation by(c) 2013 Don Schwager
Bible Story illustrations by publishing.com 

and

Visual Bible Alive

Powered byEMF Form Builder