Cemeteries offer quiet space for meditation on the Way of the Cross

Grace McKeel genuflected at the sixth station, “Veronica wipes the face of Jesus,” amid the Stations of the Cross at St. Michael Cemetery March 26. (Record Photos by Marnie McAllister)

As one graveside service ended and a small group gathered quietly around another gravesite, Grace McKeel walked silently to the central crucifix in St. Michael Cemetery, where the first station of the cross stood ready for her prayer.

Jesus is condemned to death.

The 14 stations are laid-out each year for the public to pray at each of the four Archdiocese of Louisville cemeteries in Louisville. Catholic Cemeteries staff moves the wooden crosses with their metal plaques to a different cemetery each Friday.

On March 26, as McKeel made her prayerful rounds — genuflecting and praying — a cool spring breeze carried little noise from the homes of the surrounding Schnitzelburg neighborhood. The cemetery provided a mostly peaceful backdrop for quiet meditation, interrupted only occasionally. At the sixth station, “Veronica wipes the face of Jesus,” a truck engine flared over the wall at Kroger, the cemetery’s neighbor to the South.

Catholic Cemeteries’ stations have concluded for this year, but they’re offered each year during Lent on Fridays at Calvary, St. John, St. Louis and St. Michael cemeteries.

The first station of the cross at St. Michael Cemetery. (Record Photo by Marnie McAllister)

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