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Passion
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Passion

This article describes the biblical Passion. For other meanings, see passion (disambiguation).


Though the word passion is now used to mean a great enthusiasm for some thing or for erotic emotions, in a Christian context, the Passion is the technical term for the suffering and Agony of Jesus Christ that led directly to the Crucifixion, the central Christian event. The "Passion narratives" tell this story in the Gospels. This usage exposes the etymological origins of the word, which lie in the Latin pati: "to suffer" .

Table of contents
1 "Passion" narratives
2 Instruments of the Passion
3 Stations of the Cross
4 Musical settings of Gospel narratives
5 Passion plays

"Passion" narratives

The narratives of the Passion are found in the synoptic gospels and in the Gospel of John. (text to come)

Further details concerning the Passion are revealed in some non-canonical early writings and were also elaborated in pseudepigraphia. (text to come)

Instruments of the Passion

In Christian symbolism the Instruments of the Passion are the objects associated with the Passion Crucifixion.

Each of the Instruments have become an object of veneration among Christians, pictured in icons and allegedly recovered as relics.

Each of the Instruments has its own entry at Wikipedia. This entry describes the Instruments of the Passion as a subject of meditation, from its origins in the medieval Church.

The Instruments of the Passion:

Several holy textiles were involved and have had careers as relics: Veronica's Veil, the Robe, and the burial cloths represented by the Shroud of Turin.

The Holy Dice used by the soldiers to cast lots for the Robe are to be found in several locations.

Meditation device

(text to come)

Stations of the Cross

In the Roman Catholic Church, the Passion story is depicted in the Stations of the Cross (via crucis, also translated more literally as "Way of the Cross").

Musical settings of Gospel narratives

"Passion" is also used to refer to a Protestant musical setting of this story, as the form developed during the 17th century. The Roman Catholic Oratorio covered wider Scriptural ground.

The best known Protestant musical settings of the Passion are by Johann Sebastian Bach, who wrote two Passions which have survived intact to the present day, one based on the Gospel of John (the St. John Passion), the other on the Gospel of Matthew (the St. Matthew Passion). In more recent times, the 20th century Polish composer Krzysztof Penderecki has written a St. Luke Passion, based on the Gospel of Luke.

The best known Catholic oratorio on a subject from the Passion is Joseph Haydn's Seven Last Words

A precursor of the musical Passion is the custom of setting the text of Stabat Mater (q.v. for details) to music.

Passion plays

Non-musical settings of the Passion story are generally called Passion plays. One famous cycle is performed at intervals at Oberammergau. The Passion figures among the scenes in the English mystery plays in more than one cycle of dramatic vignettes. There have also been a number of films telling the passion story, with a prominent recent example being The Passion of the Christ.