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Chapter 14

The Son spoke to the bride: ”When you people entered my temple, which was dedicated with my blood, you were as cleansed of all your sins as if you had at that moment been lifted from the font of baptism. And because of your labors and devotion, some souls of your relatives that were in purgatory have this day been liberated and have entered into heaven in my glory. For all who come to this place with a perfect will to amend their lives in accord with their better conscience, and who are not willing to fall back into their former sins, will have all their former sins completely forgiven; and they will have an increase of grace to make progress.”

This vision Lady Bridget saw in Jerusalem in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in the chapel of Mount Calvary, on the Friday after the octave of the Ascension of the Lord, when, caught up in spirit, she saw the whole passion of the Lord in painstaking detail, as it is here contained at greater length.

      1. Chapter 15

While I was at Mount Calvary, most mournfully weeping, I saw that my Lord, who was naked and scourged, had been led by the Jews to his crucifixion. He was being guarded by them diligently. I then saw too that a certain hole had been cut into the mount and that the crucifiers were round about and ready to work their cruelty. The Lord, however, turned toward me and said to me: ”Be attentive; for in this hole in the rock the foot of the cross was fixed at the time of my passion.” And at once I saw how the Jews were there fixing and fastening his cross firmly in the hole in the rock of the mount with bits of wood strongly hammered in on every side in order that the cross might stand more solidly and not fall.

Then, when the cross had been so solidly fastened there, at once wooden planks were fitted around the trunk of the cross to form steps up to the place where his feet were to be crucified, in order that both he and his crucifiers might be able to ascend by those plank steps and stand atop the planks in a way more convenient for crucifying him. After this, they then ascended by those steps, leading him with the greatest of mockery and scolding. He ascended gladly, like a meek lamb led to the slaughter. When he was finally on top of those planks, he at once, willingly and without coercion, extended his arm and opened his right hand and placed it on the cross. Those savage torturers monstrously crucified it, piercing it with a nail through that part where the bone was more solid.
And then, with a rope, they pulled violently on his left hand and fastened it to the cross in the same manner. Finally, they extended his body on the cross beyond all measure; and placing one of his shins on top of the other, they fastened to the cross his feet, thus joined, with two nails. And they violently extended those glorious limbs so far on the cross that nearly all of his veins and sinews were bursting.
Then the crown of thorns, which they had removed from his head when he was being crucified, they now put back, fitting it onto his most holy head. It pricked his awesome head with such force that then and there his eyes were filled with flowing blood and his ears were obstructed. And his face and beard were covered as if they had been dipped in that rose-red blood. And at once those crucifiers and soldiers quickly removed all the planks that abutted the cross, and then the cross remained alone and lofty, and my Lord was crucified upon it.
And as I, filled with sorrow, gazed at their cruelty, I then saw his most mournful Mother lying on the earth, as if trembling and halfdead. She was being consoled by John and by those others, her sisters, who were then standing not far from the cross on its right side. Then the new sorrow of the compassion of that most holy Mother so transfixed me that I felt, as it were, that a sharp sword of unbearable bitterness was piercing my heart. Then at last his sorrowful Mother arose; and, as it were, in a state of physical exhaustion, she looked at her Son. Thus, supported by her sisters, she stood there all dazed and in suspense, as though dead yet living, transfixed by the sword of sorrow. When her Son saw her and his other friends weeping, with a tearful voice he commended her to John. It was quite discernible in his bearing and voice that out of compassion for his Mother, his own heart was being penetrated by a most sharp arrow of sorrow beyond all measure.
Then too, his fine and lovely eyes appeared half dead; his mouth was open and bloody; his face was pale and sunken, all livid and stained with blood; and his whole body was as if black and blue and pale and very weak from the constant downward flow of blood. Indeed, his skin and the virginal flesh of his most holy body were so delicate and tender that, after the infliction of a slight blow, a black and blue mark appeared on the surface. At times, however, he tried to make stretching motions on the cross because of the exceeding bitterness of the intense and most acute pain that he felt. For at times the pain from his pierced limbs and veins ascended to his heart and battered him cruelly with an intense martyrdom; and thus his death was prolonged and delayed amidst grave torment and great bitterness.
Then, therefore, in distress from the exceeding anguish of his pain and already near to death, he cried to the Father in a loud and tearful voice, saying: ”O Father, why have you forsaken me?” He then had pale lips, a bloody tongue, and a sunken abdomen that adhered to his back as if he had no viscera within. A second time also, he cried out again in the greatest of pain and anxiety: ”O Father, into your hands I commend my spirit.” Then his head, raising itself a little, immediately bowed; and thus he sent forth his spirit. When his Mother then saw these things, she trembled at that immense bitterness and would have fallen onto the earth if she had not been supported by the other women. Then, in that hour, his hands retracted slightly from the place of the nail holes because of the exceeding weight of his body; and thus his body was as if supported by the nails with which his feet had been crucified. Moreover, his fingers and hands and arms were now more extended than before; his shoulder blades, in fact, and his back were as if pressed tightly to the cross.
Then at last the Jews standing around cried out in mockery against his Mother, saying many things. For some said: ”Mary, now your Son is dead”; but others said other mocking words. And while the crowds were thus standing about, one man came running with the greatest of fury and fixed a lance in his right side with such violence and force that the lance would have passed almost through the other side of the body. Thus, when the lance was extracted from the body, at once a stream, as it were, of blood spurted out of that wound in abundance; in fact, the iron blade of the lance and a part of the shaft came out of the body red and stained with the blood. Seeing these things, his Mother so violently trembled with bitter sighing that it was quite discernible in her face and bearing that her soul was then being penetrated by the sharp sword of sorrow.
When all these things had been accomplished and when the large crowds were receding, certain of the Lord's friends took him down. Then, with pity, his Mother received him into her most holy arms; and sitting, she laid him on her knee, all torn as he was and wounded and black and blue. With tears, she and John and those others, the weeping women, washed him. And then, with her linen cloth, his most mournful Mother wiped his whole body and its wounds. And she closed his eyes and kissed them; and she wrapped him in a clean cloth of fine linen. And thus they escorted him with lamentation and very great sorrow and placed him in the sepulchre.

Christ complains to the bride about all the earth's princes and prelates because they will not keep in their memory and recall in their heart these his sorrows and his passion and because they will not consider those sacred places of the Holy Land; and he threatens them if they do not amend themselves.

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