McNicholas to present in Downtown Stations of the Cross event

By Isabella Daley

Several McNicholas students and staff members will present the station “Jesus Carries His Cross” as part of the Way of the Cross for Justice event on Good Friday, March 30.

This event will begin at noon at Fountain Square in downtown Cincinnati, and will end at about 2 p.m. with a procession to the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center, followed by a closing prayer and bread service.

The Social Action Office of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati invited McNick to be part of the Way of the Cross for Justice because “[they] were quite impressed with McNick’s DACA and immigrant involvement this year, along with our heart for service,” theology teacher Teresa Davis said.

The Way of the Cross for Justice includes 5 of the 14 traditional Stations on the Cross, and its primary focus is on connecting Jesus’s suffering to the suffering of people afflicted by current injustices.  McNick’s station will reflect specifically on economic injustices.

“[It] brings awareness to the fact that we need to help people who are bearing different crosses,” senior Jillian Sennett said.

Sennett has been working with theology teacher John Norman to create a script for McNick’s presentation.  “My favorite part of writing the script has been learning about the different kinds of injustice people in the Cincinnati area face. While this isn’t very fun necessarily, it is incredibly important to educate yourself about the issues in the area so we are able to make a difference,” Sennett said.

According to Davis, the script and presentation will include the scripture passages traditionally read with McNick’s station as well as “a visual presentation of how those in poverty carry their cross in this world and how we can help bear the burden.”

“I’m looking forward to being able to speak out about this topic itself and being able to engage with so many people on Good Friday,” Junior Lillie Zimmerman said.  “I hope to make people think twice when they see someone on the street who is in poverty.”

Zimmerman will play the main role in the skit during McNick’s presentation.  “I will hold two buckets on my back to represent the difficulties in being poor,” Zimmerman said.

About 12 McNicholas students and teachers attended the Way of the Cross last year when it began again after a 5-year hiatus, and McNick is hoping to increase its numbers in participation this year.

There are many opportunities for more students to participate by creating posters, acting in the presentation, or watching and praying during the event.  “I encourage anyone who wants to help to join the crew,” Sennett said.

“It is a truly powerful way of prayer,” Davis said.

“I hope it drives people to serve and help others in the community,” Sennett added.

“Our goal with this whole thing is to help people look at the poor as how they carry their weight rather than judge them for having to carry it,” Zimmerman said.

Stations of the Cross
Students process toward the altar at Guardian Angels Church during McNick’s Stations of the Cross Service in 2017. McNick will again hold a Stations of the Cross Service at Guardian Angels on Wednesday, March 28, this year before several students present in the Way of the Cross for Justice event at Fountain Square on Friday, Mar. 30. Photo courtesy of McNicholas High School Archives.

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