When I first came to the parish in 2003, I was blessed to start a youth program from scratch. Coming from a very small parish back home I knew the one thing that the youth did was a Living Stations of the Cross. Everyone gets dressed, one guy is asked to be Jesus, and you carry the cross down the aisle of the church. I looked online and it is very hard to find a script with good explanation.
Now we do have a Living Stations script in our members section that is ready to go and will be developed more and more as I use it, but this will help you learn how to start from scratch or tweak the content you did find. I will start with what I did.
1) Set up the structure
The congregation will appreciate a structure. After the first two stations they should have a good idea of what is expected of them. It will also make it more comfortable for them to delve in to what is happening. Our basic structure that we used is scripture, a voice (prayer by us), and Jesus’ response. So just about every station includes that.
I knew I wanted our script to be enriched with scripture. So I went to the Vatican website and found what they used that year for scripture. If you dig deep, you will find that each year they switch it up a bit. So you can go back and look at what they have used for several years and use that. You earn some brownie points when you join in prayer with the Vatican anyways! Or just grab your stations of the cross pamphlets that you use in church and see what they use for scripture.
For the meditations in our living stations script I used writings from my favorite saint, St. Alphonsus Liguori. There is already a stations of the cross manual that came from his meditations so that made it easy. These were what I used for the voice of the person. I changes a few of the words to make it more youth friendly, but did not want to take away from the richness of his writings.
3) Jesus’ Response
It was important for me to have a part in the script where the youth would hear some things that may have been going through Christ’s head. I wrote my own words for Jesus (bold I know). They were very simple and spoke entirely of love. Our main audience is the youth and I just wanted the youth to know that Christ loved them, so much they might get sick of hearing it. I had three priests look it over and went with it.
I was a music major in college and also do worship often for youth events so I knew what I wanted for music. If you want suggestions here are a few songs that I use:
Love Song – Third Day
Via Dolorosa – Sandi Patty
Were You There
We also use the short worship song “Come Into My Heart” in between each station. There are several different verses of it.
I would just recommend using a good mix of music that they know, that they can meditate on, and that truly brings out the meaning of lent.
To be blunt, I do not know much about costumes. When I arrived, a lady had already made the costumes and they were amazing, so we have used those every year. I would recommend leaving this to a pro. There are not too many ladies who know how to sew that wouldn’t do this for the parish if the materials were paid for.
So that is how I wrote up our script. There are so many ways that it can be done. If you need a quick fix, I have seen someone just do the regular pamphlet for a script. Then they would have stills of a scene for people to look at. They used a spotlight. Turned off the spotlight during the transition song and then the next scene was up when they announced the station.
Have other ideas? Please comment below and let us know what you do.