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Lent and Easter

Attica parish presents unique Stations of the Cross to diocese

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Members of the Wyoming County Association for Catholic Youth present the Stations of the Cross in shadow form. The interpretation uses spoken word meditation and shadow imagery to tell the last day of Jesus Christ.

A Lenten tradition in Attica is watching a presentation of the Shadow Stations of the Cross. The Wyoming Association of Catholic Youth in conjunction with the SS. Joachim & Anne music ministry humbly recreate the last days of Jesus Christ, presented through the use of shadow imagery.  

A team of up to 18 teenagers act out the 14 stations from behind a sheet, with a spotlight casting shadows of biblical figures representing Jesus receiving the cross, falling three times, and being laid to rest in a tomb.

SS. Joachim & Anne Parish has presented this visual and musical meditation on the Way of the Cross to area parishes during the Fridays of Lent for 10 years. Since traveling and large gatherings are not possible, they decided to videotape the presentation and make it available via YouTube for the faithful to watch from their homes. 

“Most people when they see it live in the church at the moment, it’s tearful, it’s humbling,” explained Marlene Lamparelli, youth mentor for WACY. “The meditations are for you and me. They go right to your heart.”

Initially the teens resisted the idea of recording the stations, feeling it would lose some of the emotional gravitas, but then realized they could reach much more people through YouTube.

The Stations of the Cross are a 14-step Catholic devotion that commemorates Jesus Christ’s last day on earth as a man. The 14 stations focus on specific events of His last day, beginning with His condemnation. The stations are commonly used as a mini pilgrimage as the individual moves from station to station. At each station, the individual recalls and meditates on a specific event from Christ’s last day. Specific prayers are recited, then the individual moves to the next station until all 14 are complete. Father James Fugle, a spiritual mentor to WACY, developed the idea of using shadows and wrote the original meditations.

“The teens love working together. They know it’s a very powerful thing,” Lamparelli said. “People are usually overwhelmed when they see it for the first time.”

WACY began in 2007 as a much-needed combined teen youth group from local parishes. Today, it has nearly 50 members from several counties. Theresa Zielinski is the group organizer.  

The video can be seen at https://youtu.be/u2ZyatxQr4s.

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