Beginning at the conspiracy against Jesus and the anointing up Bethany, we continue on into the entry into Jerusalem, and then the unfoldings begin in the most mysterious, transforming, and earth-shattering way for the Lamb of God is to be slain.
Though we know Sunday will come in the joy, graces grow and deepen as we walk the way with Him, Mary and the disciples along the via dolorosa.
The Garden of Gethsemane today
Preparing for Your Retreat Reflections
Take each pericope (section) as if you were there, and spend time with each section.
Put aside personal prayer time in the morning and the evening. The morning for the prayerful reading and contemplation on these mysteries. In the evening, in your reflection time, review the morning’s mystery and the day's graces, taking them into an Examen.
The Desired Graces for the Retreat
For the Retreat, we ask for the graces to know Him more clearly, to follow Him more nearly, and to love Him more dearly. You may have additional special graces you desire. Share them with the Lord.
The Plan for Each Day
A. Preparatory Prayers
Ask for your desired graces for the day. Share them with the Lord.
Offer yourself to the Lord. Prayer of “Take and Receive”
Take Lord, and receive all my liberty,
my memory, my understanding, and my entire will,
all that I have and possess.
Thou hast given all to me.
To Thee, O Lord, I return it.
All is Thine; dispose of it wholly according to Thy will.
Give me Thy love and thy grace, for this, is sufficient for me.
Or consider writing your own offering of yourself, your thoughts, desires, and actions ( your head, heart, and hands).
B. Meditations ( Discursive or Imaginative)
Read the mystery slowly and pray attentively using all of your faculties - faith, and feelings - your interior senses, imagination, recall – as you pray with each section.
What do you sense were the experiences of Jesus, Mary, the Apostles, and the crowds?
Imagine being present there - what do you see, hear, and smell?
Where are you in the scene?
C. End with a Colloquy
Close your prayer time with your own words ( a colloquy), then a vocal formal prayer (Our Father, Hail Mary, or Glory Be
D. Reflection ( Journaling).
At the end of each prayer period, note down your experiences on what were your insights, feelings, thoughts, images, and memories that came up for you. Savor the graces.
E. Evening Examen
In the Evening, review the day’s events with the Examen and reflect on the graces of the morning’s prayer time that affected your day. Savor the graces.
Close this time with your own words.
Note: After reading from the different gospel writers on a particular pericope, you may find yourself drawn to one, select that one to prayer with. Also you may find certain moments in walking with Jesus you want to return to again and again. Ignatius recommends stay with it, let it settle within you.
The Passion and Death of Jesus Christ in the Four Gospels
The gospels were written as an account of time past so that we may know the Truth, Way, and Life.
* Due to the intensity of reflecting upon these scriptures, I recommend you be accompanied by your spiritual director through these; or if you have experienced or experiencing anxiety or depression, please be accompanied along by your Catholic therapist or, if you do not have one, to seek one out before you begin self-directed retreats.