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During Holy Week, we will be featuring reflections by our fellows centered around the Stations of the Cross, which commemorates the Passion of Jesus.

Today, for Holy Monday, we share a reflection by Brian O’Connor on the First Station: Jesus is Condemned to Die.  Brian is working at Erie Family Health Center and he shared his story at Amate House’s Stations of the Cross evening of reflection on March 21, 2018.

Brian reads his reflection at the annual Stations of the Cross Reflection at South House.

In this first station, Jesus is brought before Pilate and sentenced to be crucified.  Jesus has accepted his fate at this point and he knows the difficult path that lays before him.

I would like to share the story of someone I’ve worked with pretty closely for the past few months- she will remain nameless for this reflection.  She is a patient at Erie who has been seen there for a couple of years now. In the summer, her husband got a job as a truck driver and is now frequently gone for weeks at a time. His new income made their family ineligible for their previous insurance plan. While switching between insurance plans she was diagnosed with a late stage of brain cancer.

A young wife and mother, she has been forced to bear a burden few can imagine. Her husband is caught between working long hours to pay for her treatment and wanting to be there to support her and their children.  

She will receive treatment, chemotherapy- with it will come hair loss, fatigue, and nausea- and maybe damage far beyond that.  Her youth will be drained and, if she makes it through, her life will certainly never be the same.

For Jesus and for our friend, the die has been cast, the sentence has been written.  All we can hope for is that people will help them along the way.

Brian poses with a bulletin board he designed at Erie Family Health Center’s Johnson site.