Method of Meditating


Retire, if possible, to some place where you can pray in silence and recollection.

Kneel down and recollect yourself in the presence of God; adore His infinite majesty; humble yourself before Him; beg pardon for your sins; implore His grace, saying some prayer like the following:

"Grant me, O Lord, through Thy bitter Passion and death, the grace to know and love Thy infinite goodness; to thank Thee and compassionate Thee for Thy sufferings in my behalf. Awaken in me a lively sorrow for my sins and help me for the future to do Thy holy will."

You may also invoke the assistance of Mary, of your patron saint, and other saints to whom you have a special devotion.

Body of the Meditation

Now read or recall to mind some part of the Passion on which you wish to meditate, such as the agony of Our Lord in the garden, the crowning with thorns, the scourging, or the crucifixion.

Consider, then, Our Lord's sufferings, comprising them under the following simple questions:

1. Who is it that suffers?

2. What does He suffer?

3. Why does He suffer?

4. How does He suffer?

Dwell for some time on each one of these points. Consider: First, as to who it is that suffers; that He is God - Lord of all, Creator of all, God incarnate, Redeemer, infinitely perfect, good, kind, just, loving, etc. Make some acts of adoration, love, veneration, etc.

Secondly, as to what He suffers; consider the cruelty, shamefulness, length, excess of suffering, etc., and make repeated acts of regret, sorrow, compassion, etc.

Thirdly, as to why He suffers; reflect that it is not for His own sake, but for men, His creatures, for sinners especially, and therefore for you in particular.

Consider, then, your littleness, unworthiness, guilt, ingratitude, etc., and humble yourself before God, and thank Him for His infinite love, etc.

Moreover, consider that He also suffered to give you an example of virtue, to teach you the malice of sin, to withdraw you from vice, etc.; and then recall to mind the special vices or faults to which you are subject; beg pardon of God and resolve to amend; adopt some special means, etc.

Fourthly, consider how, or in what manner, Jesus suffers. Reflect on the special virtues of which He gives you an example: His meekness, silence, obedience, patience, etc.; and see how you can imitate Him, or receive encouragement from Him.


Conclude your pious reflections by resolving to practise some particular virtue, or to avoid some habitual fault, for the sake of your suffering Lord, in imitation of His example; and thank Him for the grace and light He has bestowed upon you. Pray earnestly for His constant assistance in trials and temptations; beg Our Lord for any spiritual or temporal benefit you stand in need of; remember also to pray for all that have a special claim on you, and finish by devoutly and slowly reciting an Our Father, Hail Mary, and Glory be to the Father. Take some little maxim or devout thought with you from your meditation, and endeavor to recall it frequently to mind during the day.

- text taken from Flowers of the Passion, taken from the letters of Saint Paul of the Cross