500-plus 'pilgrims' expected to join city leaders and clergy for Good Friday pilgrimage down Main Street
The Church of the Redeemer, an Episcopal church in downtown Sarasota, and the Sarasota Ministerial Association invite the Sarasota community to observe the Passion of Jesus Christ by participating in walking the Stations of the Cross down Main Street Sarasota on Good Friday, March 29, beginning at 7:30 a.m.
Walking the Stations of the Cross is a centuries-old Christian tradition of remembering and experiencing 14 events along the way of Christ’s journey to the cross. The Church of the Redeemer Friday Men’s Breakfast Prayer Group founded this tradition of walking down Main Street in 1996; the event began with fewer than 15 participants and has since grown into a multi-church and community-wide event with approximately 500 “pilgrims” participating. Due to the increasing popularity and size of the event, City of Sarasota Police will escort the pilgrims, provide traffic control and assure the safety of all participating.
Since 2002, the Sarasota Ministerial Association, comprising more than 50 downtown and local area churches and faith based agencies, has joined Redeemer in being a witness to Sarasota of Christ’s redemptive sufferings. Many of the Association’s churches will be represented in the walking of the Stations of the Cross, with pastors, priests, church leaders, choir members and youth groups taking parts in this community service.
The Christian pilgrimage gathers at 7:15 a.m., in front of the Hollywood 20 Theater on Main Street, and the walking of the Stations will begin promptly at 7:30 a.m., when The Rev. Fredrick A. Robinson, Redeemer’s Rector, members of the Men’s Ministry of Redeemer and of the Sarasota Ministerial Association, will lead the pilgrimage in prayer and singing. The cross will be carried throughout the walk by Redeemer’s Youth Minister, Mr. Christian Wood. Association choir members will follow in procession behind The Cross, singing the Trisagion in refrain following each station reading.
Along the way, pilgrims stop for worship and prayer at each of the fourteen stations — an opportunity for reflection upon the different moments of Christ’s passion journey; a service booklet sharing the acts of worship for each station is provided to all participating pilgrims.
The procession down Main Street will include stations in front of the Sarasota Herald-Tribune building, the steps of the First Baptist Church, the First United Methodist Church, and many other sites on and near Main Street, and will conclude at approximately 8:30 a.m., at the Church of the Redeemer, 222 S. Palm Avenue, with a closing devotion. All pilgrims are invited to stay at Redeemer for the Morning Prayer service, which will immediately follow, with Father Robinson leading the prayer, joined by Rev. Dr. Tom Pfaff, Chair of the Sarasota Ministerial Association.
For those who want to park at the final station at the Church of the Redeemer, buses, beginning at 6:45 a.m., will be transporting pilgrims from Redeemer to the Hollywood 20 location. After the 9 a.m., Morning Prayer service at Redeemer, bus transportation will again be offered from Redeemer to Hollywood 20 for pilgrims who parked at the beginning of the route.
For more information about the event, please call 941-955-4263 or visit redeemersarasota.org.