For most, it was a day like any other day. Then, people saw it, a procession of soldiers and men with crosses. At their destination, the men would be hung on the crosses. For Christians, one of those men was their Christ and that day would become one of the holiest in their calendar, Good Friday. On Friday, April 18th at 11am, that final walk of Christ will be remembered through a Good Friday ecumenical cross walk that will start at the First Presbyterian Church of Stanhope on 100 Main Street in Stanhope and end at St. Michael’s Roman Catholic Church at 4 Church Street in Netcong. In a cross walk, a cross is carried, with walkers following it, stopping periodically to hear the Good Friday scriptures. Several areas churches are participating and all are welcomed to join in walking all or any portion of the walk.
“Churches really have more in common than it might seem. Oftentimes the differences are style, emphasis, form or authority. The cross walk shows our common heritage in the Jewish rabbi, Jesus, whom Christians believe is the crucified and risen Messiah / Christ. “said the Rev. Hugh Matlack, pastor of the Presbyterian Church.
Joining the Presbyterian church in reading the Good Friday scriptures from the Bible look of Luke will be representatives of Port Morris United Methodist Church (Landing), Stanhope United Methodist Church (Netcong) and St. Michael’s Roman Catholic Church (Netcong).
After hearing the scripture at the Presbyterian church, walkers will proceed down the street. Volunteers will lead the way carrying a cross. The next reading stop will be near Bell’s Mansion, and from there walkers will go on to the Stanhope United Methodist Church.
“The cross walk gives the churches of the community the opportunity to express that we might be different in our worship and liturgy; however, we come together as one to remember and give thanks for what Jesus Christ has done for every one of us. It gives us the time to get out into the community as a united witness of our faith. It’s just a few minutes in one’s day to walk and reflect on the love of our God, through his Son,” said the Rev. Tom Kinter, pastor of the Methodist church.
The walk will continue to an area outside the Netcong train station for another reading From there, walkers will move on to the last stop: St. Michael’s Roman Catholic Church..
“This will be my first Holy Week to be celebrated here in St. Michael’s Church. I was delighted to learn about the twenty-year-old custom of commemorating the passion and death of our Savior, Jesus Christ, with our fellow Christians from the surrounding communities. The conclusion of this observance will take place at St. Michael’s with the reading of the final passages from the Gospel account of Jesus’ suffering and dying. I personally wish to encourage all Christians in the area to join with us,” said Father Adam Muda, pastor of St. Michael’s Church in Netcong.