Pope Francis: The Lord’s Passion And Via Crucis ELEVENTH STATION WHEN WILL THE DEATH PENALTY, STILL PRACTICED IN MANY STATES, BE ABOLISHED?
Jesus is nailed to the cross
The supreme “throne” of God’s love
From the Gospel according to John
“Then they handed him over to them to be crucified … Pilate also had an inscription written and put on the cross. It read, ‘Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Jews’”.
JESUS’ THOUGHTS AND FEELINGS
They are driving nails into my hands and feet. My arms are outstretched. The nails excruciatingly pierce my flesh. I am immobilized in body, but free in heart, with the same freedom with which I went forth to my passion. Free, for I am full of love, a love which embraces all.
I look at the men who are crucifying me. I think of those who have ordered them to do this: “Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing”. Beside me are two other men condemned to crucifixion. One of them asks me to remember him when I come into my kingdom. Yes, I tell him, “Today you will be with me in Paradise”.
We gaze at you, Jesus, as you are nailed to the cross. And our conscience is troubled. We anxiously ask: When will the death penalty, still practiced in many states, be abolished? When will every form of torture and the violent killing of innocent persons come to an end? Your Gospel is the surest defence of the human person, of every human being.
“Have mercy on us!”
Lord Jesus, to teach us how to offer our lives in love you embraced the cross; at the hour of death you heard the plea of the penitent thief. Sinless Saviour, you were numbered with the transgressors and submitted to the judgement of sinners.
All: Pater noster… Stabat Mater
 Jn 19:16, 19.
 Cf. Roman Missal, Eucharistic Prayer II.
 Lk 23:34.
 Lk 23:43.