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Colosseum Via Crucis: Pope doesn’t attend (Photos)

A general view shows the Colosseum before the Way of the Cross (Via Crucis)

Antoine Mekary | ALETEIA

I.Media - published on 03/29/24

Like last year, the Pope decided to forego the late, long, open-air event, preferring to follow it from his residence, as the faithful meditated with the reflections he wrote.

Pope Francis, 87, did not go to the Colosseum on March 29, 2024, where he was expected to preside over the traditional Stations of the Cross at 9:15 pm. The Holy See press office reported that this decision was taken “to preserve his health” ahead of the Easter celebrations.

“To preserve his health in view of tomorrow’s Vigil and the Holy Mass on Easter Sunday, this evening Pope Francis will follow the Via Crucis at the Colosseum from Casa Santa Marta [his residence.”

Like last year, the Pope has therefore cancelled his participation in this traditional celebration, which brings together several thousand faithful around the Colosseum to commemorate the Passion of Jesus Christ.

This year the Pope personally wrote the 14 meditations for the Way of the Cross.

This afternoon, the Pope presided over the Celebration of the Passion in St. Peter’s Basilica. As is customary, the homily was delivered not by the Pope, but by the preacher of the Pontifical Household. During the celebration, the Pope held up a large wooden crucifix for a few moments.

On Saturday evening, at 7.30 pm, Pope Francis is due to preside over the Easter vigil in St. Peter’s Basilica. The following day, Easter Sunday, the Argentine pontiff is due to preside over the Mass of the Lord’s Resurrection at 10am in St. Peter’s Square, and then pronounce his Urbi et Orbi blessing at noon from the loggia of St. Peter’s Basilica.

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