Christians recall Jesus' sacrifice during Way of the Cross Walk in Augusta

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As the crowd began to move along Wells Drive, Daniel Odom hoisted a giant cross above his head, his outstretched hands gripping each side of the horizontal fence post while the upright post rested along his spine.

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People begin the 1.5-mile walk from Burns Memorial United Methodist Church to St. Joseph Catholic Church. The Way of the Cross Walk is a way for Chrisitans to remember Jesus' walk to Calvary, where he was crucified.  JON-MICHAEL SULLIVAN/STAFF
JON-MICHAEL SULLIVAN/STAFF
People begin the 1.5-mile walk from Burns Memorial United Methodist Church to St. Joseph Catholic Church. The Way of the Cross Walk is a way for Chrisitans to remember Jesus' walk to Calvary, where he was crucified.

It was the first time he had ever made the mile-and-a-half journey that was the annual Good Friday Way of the Cross Walk through south Augusta.

An estimated 500 people walked with him Friday, many carrying crosses of varying sizes.

Odom’s was by far the largest.

He built it the day before out of fence posts and rope. He built a smaller, similar one for his fiancée, Katie Gilliland, to carry as she made the journey with him.

“I didn’t really know what to expect,” he said. “The point of toting it is to try to get the feel of what Jesus was going through when he was toting it for our sins, so I wanted to make it difficult.”

The cross walkers had already conquered the first leg of the journey, from Burns Memorial United Methodist Church on Lumpkin Road, to Ascension Lutheran Church on Wells Drive, and were embarking on the second leg through the neighborhood to Hillcrest Baptist Church on Deans Bridge Road.

At each stop, they rested, listened to Scripture readings and sang hymns before moving on. The walk ended at St. Joseph Catholic Church.

After a few steps of carrying the cross over his head as he left Ascension, Odom readjusted his load, turning it sideways and carrying it over his shoulder – the way depictions of Jesus often show it, the base of the cross nearly dragging the ground.

He said his thoughts rarely strayed from his reason for being there: to reflect on Jesus’ walk to Golgotha, carrying the cross he would hang on until he died.

Odom’s face quickly grew red and his breathing labored as he plodded along near the back of the crowd.

“(This) pales in comparison to what he had to go through,” Odom said. “I’m just trying to focus on the fact that even though it feels difficult, it’s not anything compared to what Jesus had to go through for us. It’s like I need to suck it up.”

Gilliland and Steve Patteson, the assistant pastor of Hillcrest Baptist Church, where the couple attends, walked along with him, offering encouragement or a respite if needed.

Occasionally someone would ask to carry the burden for a while, which gave Odom opportunity to rest.

“Luckily I have a good group of people helping me,” he said. “They’re encouraging me to keep moving and keep my mind on what we’re here for, sort of helping me kind of push through.”

Even Jesus did not carry his cross alone, said Marion Cosper.

Cosper embarked on the journey for the first time in years, as his health had rendered him physically unable to participate. His wife, Debbie, carried a crucifix as she walked beside him.

For the past three years, as Cosper battled heart attacks and problems with vertebrae in his neck, he contemplated the meaning of suffering.

“Jesus didn’t want to do it. He said, ‘I don’t want to do it,’ ” Cosper said. “I figured suffering is not just pain, like people say. Often it’s not your way. Anything (that is) not your way is suffering,” he said.

He said Simon of Cyrene did not want to carry Jesus’ cross, but was forced to. But in doing so, he helped Jesus with salvation.

“If you embrace the cross, like Simon did, if you embrace and do it, you help Jesus carry the cross. You help Jesus save the world,” he said.

“You do it every day, but this is the expression,” he said.

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david jennings
624
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david jennings 04/19/14 - 06:28 am
5
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Now the good news

"Loving Father, we thank Thee and praise Thee that Thou hadst made an escape for the guilty and comdemned sinner such as we are. We thank Thee and praise Thee for the plan of salvation and the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world and we thank Thee from the depths of our being that it included us. We thank Thee for the day we ever heard the gospel and the joy of our salvation." Dr. Leyman Strauss thank you too!

GiantsAllDay
10295
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GiantsAllDay 04/19/14 - 08:41 am
3
5
yeah, I never got the whole

yeah, I never got the whole i'll die for you cause I made you human and then you gotta do whatever I say for the rest of your life. But I too went along with the program. never really liked easter- except watching my kids do the easter egg hunt.
Received a text yesterday from a brilliant friend who works at the Pentagon.

She wished me a happy Good Friday and to remember Jesus and the sacrifice he made for all mankind.

I'm just sitting here consumed with my own problems, and out of the blue she suggests that I twist and contort my mind to imagine that the bloody, gruesome, torturous death of a man who (may or may not have actually) lived some 2000 years ago is of some benefit to me.

How/why do otherwise intelligent people keep propagating this nonsense?

Am I lost & alone without believing these things?

I've discovered Hindu/Sikh/Buddhist-type philosophies over the past few years and much prefer those to Christianity.

Gage Creed
18915
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Gage Creed 04/19/14 - 10:00 am
2
2
Mad Max

Insert Mad Max quote here and here and here and here and here

The Mick
827
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The Mick 04/19/14 - 10:22 am
5
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Giants, as an American I will

Giants, as an American I will support and defend your right to believe whatever you want. As a Christian, I am gonna pray for you. Hope you have a good day tomorrow regardless.

lovingthesouth72
1399
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lovingthesouth72 04/19/14 - 11:17 am
4
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It's all about love

How anyone could reject such love is incomprehensible!

GiantsAllDay
10295
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GiantsAllDay 04/19/14 - 01:03 pm
3
5
How an adult could believe

How an adult could believe made up stories is incomprehensible.

Gage Creed
18915
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Gage Creed 04/19/14 - 01:41 pm
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^ Prime example of intolerance

You surely give those disciplines you espouse a bad name

GiantsAllDay
10295
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GiantsAllDay 04/19/14 - 01:45 pm
3
5
Why doesn't Christianity give

Why doesn't Christianity give it up already? He is dead. He is NOT coming back--a dead person never has. Not only not coming back, he is not even going to call. Sheeeesh

Gage Creed
18915
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Gage Creed 04/19/14 - 01:53 pm
3
2
GiantsAllDay
10295
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GiantsAllDay 04/19/14 - 02:20 pm
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Gage, he died 2 weeks

Gage, he died 2 weeks later--And now if he comes back, I will be a complete believer....
http://www.cnn.com/2014/03/13/us/mississippi-walter-williams-dead/

GiantsAllDay
10295
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GiantsAllDay 04/19/14 - 02:24 pm
3
5
I have no problem with people

I have no problem with people going to church on Sundays and socializing and gossiping about what clothes other people are wearing, etc. What gets me mad is adults lying to little children and scaring them out of their wits. Accept Jesus or go to hell, hell is a bad place where you will burn forever, etc etc, Sometimes I really wish there was such a place........ for evil preachers to go--for tormenting little children.....

GiantsAllDay
10295
Points
GiantsAllDay 04/19/14 - 02:32 pm
1
4
Easter Sunday--tomorrow--we

Easter Sunday--tomorrow--we all on the blue boat..........
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YtZUM0JhLvc

Gage Creed
18915
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Gage Creed 04/19/14 - 04:08 pm
1
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Hedging our bets I see....

Hedging our bets I see....

Gage Creed
18915
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Gage Creed 04/19/14 - 04:11 pm
2
2
GAD... I bet you are just the

GAD... I bet you are just the life of the party at Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, funerals, EASTER, and other occasions.... lighten up dude... it's not all about YOU.

The Mick
827
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The Mick 04/19/14 - 04:21 pm
3
1
Giants, you are very

Giants, you are very defensive for somebody who is not being asked to believe anything...that is not this website getting you worked up boss! Still gonna pray for you. Happy Easter!

follower
59
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follower 04/19/14 - 05:06 pm
5
1
GAD, your belief doesn't make

GAD, your belief doesn't make something true, and your dis-belief doesn't destroy truth.

History shows there was a "Jesus", regardless of your denial. You can certainly deny His deity, but not His existence.

GiantsAllDay
10295
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GiantsAllDay 04/19/14 - 10:08 pm
0
2
Follower, is he coming back

Follower, is he coming back someday? Did you go to school? Did you have teachers?

GiantsAllDay
10295
Points
GiantsAllDay 04/19/14 - 10:08 pm
0
1
Follower, is he coming back

Follower, is he coming back someday? Did you go to school? Did you have teachers?

GiantsAllDay
10295
Points
GiantsAllDay 04/20/14 - 07:18 am
1
1
Not sure if anyone is still

Not sure if anyone is still here. If so, Happy Easter Sunday. Even if you don't believe in the religious aspect of the day, it is still a great chance to appreciate miracles and be positive. Whether that is through Church, candy (yuck), ham, family time, or just looking thankfully towards the sky (you have to admit it is beautiful), we can all make this a day to be grateful.

Gage Creed
18915
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Gage Creed 04/20/14 - 12:25 pm
0
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(Fred Sanford Voice) " I'm

(Fred Sanford Voice) " I'm coming to see ya 'Lizabeth"

Happy Easter!

The Mick
827
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The Mick 04/20/14 - 05:42 pm
0
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Happy Easter Giants All Day!

Happy Easter Giants All Day!

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