First Station

Jesus is condemned to death

From the Gospel according to Luke (23:22-25)

A third time he said to them, “Why, what evil has he done? I have found in him no ground for the sentence of death; I will therefore have him flogged and then release him. But they kept urgently demanding with loud shouts that he should be crucified; and their voices prevailed. So Pilate gave his verdict that their demand should be granted. He released the man they asked for, the one who had been put in prison for insurrection and murder, and handed Jesus over as they wished.

1992 073 002 V0001 1George Tooker (American, 1920–2011), Drawings for “The Stations of the Cross,” 1984, Pencil on tracing paper. Snite Museum of Art, University of Notre Dame. Gift of the artist. 1992.073.002


“I’m sorry, but my hands are tied.” The expression speaks of a restriction, an impasse, the inability to meet the request of another. Yet, Jesus sees the tying of his hands as something completely contrary to our modern understanding. His life, death, and resurrection are ultimately ordered toward our freedom. Admittedly, it’s an odd path. Jesus willingly watches as Pilate refuses to free him. He even accepts the will of the demanding crowd who would rather have in their midst a man who had been put in prison for insurrection and murder. What evil has Jesus done? It’s the wrong question. What do you seek? Now we are getting closer. Bind his hands, refuse his freedom, nail him to an instrument of torture and death. All will be swallowed up in the victory of the Cross and we will be set free.  

– Fr. Pete McCormick, C.S.C., Director of Campus Ministry

Introduction Second Station