Station 5: Simon Helps Jesus Carry His Cross
Artist: Tony Mighell
Detail, one of two panels
737mm x 820mm
Oil on panel
It is a walk up a road, a hill
pain and progress
The fifth stop; Simon of Cyrene helps Jesus carry the Cross
Simon has such little made of him in the bible. We know he came from what is now Libya and that he was most likely black or dark in colour. But without attempting to tap into some figurative conjuring, which my own universe of graphic mark, colour, line, does not at present encompass, what can I rely on as a point of reference, something physical, real in this vast universe of memory, ritual, faith and time.
On the spot where the fifth station is remembered, celebrated there is a Franciscan Church, the Chapel of Simon of Cyrene, a Franciscan construction built in 1895. A small hollow in one of the stone walls of the churchh is said to hold the imprint left by Jesus as he rested on the wall. Pilgrims have touched this stone over the last 2000 years leaving a depression, a shape, a reference, a literal touchstone.