The “Station Mass” originated in Rome under the auspices of Pope Gregory the Great (590-604). The Bishop of Rome would make a daily pilgrimage to one of the forty churches in Rome dedicated to the memory of the martyrs and saints. Pilgrims would walk in the footsteps of the saints and join the Pope in a penitential exercise before celebrating Mass at each “stopping place “ or “station”. In doing so, they were also following the example of Jesus who went out into the desert and fasted for forty days and forty nights in preparation for his mission. It is this “journey” which forms the spiritual background to the forty days of Lent and the journey each of us has to make into the desert of our own hearts and lives.
Archbishop George celebrates the Station Mass at Our Lady Queen of Martyrs, Hereford.