Hispanic worshippers re-create Stations of Cross downtown
By Steve Huffman
A re-creation of the final steps of Christ was held Friday morning in downtown Salisbury.
Members of the Hispanic congregation of Sacred Heart Catholic Church staged the “Stations of the Cross” celebration. The re-creation began and ended at the church, with participants parading east on Innes Street to the downtown Square, then heading north on Main Street to the courthouse before returning to the church.
Rogelio Garcia played the role of Jesus, and looked remarkably similar to the paintings of the Christ-figure that have been produced over the years. Others were dressed like everything from Roman guards to peasants, from angels to disciples.
“We are walking like the real walk of Jesus,” said Francesca Medrano, the event’s coordinator, speaking in broken English.
Stations of the Cross is an annual event held every Good Friday. It traces Jesus’ forced hike to the hill where he was crucified. This marked the eighth year that members of Sacred Heart staged the celebration.
In years past, the event had been held on land that Sacred Heart owns on Jake Alexander Boulevard. But construction of a new school the church is building at the site forced the move this year.
It was obvious those who participated in Friday’s celebration took the event seriously, going to great lengths to be sure their costumes were realistic. They sang as they walked, and paused to re-create the beating that Jesus suffered at the hands of the Roman guards.
Father John Putnam, pastor of Sacred Heart, said the church’s Hispanic membership is large, with anywhere from 600 to 700 taking part in the two masses held there.
“It’s very visual, I guess that’s a good way to describe it,” Putnam said of the Stations of the Cross celebration.
He said the members of Sacred Heart plan throughout the year for the event, putting lots of thought into its presentation.
“They like to give a concrete expression of their faith,” Putnam said.