Gallery of Church Architecture, Monuments and Photographs
1805 St Michael's Church pre
1855 St Michael's interior pre 1832 An architects drawing of the Chancel circa 1850
St Michael's Church circa 1955 St Michael's Church circa 1960
Inside the churchSt Michael's Chancel - 2011 The High Altar The Lady Chapel in 2011 The statue of the Madonna given in memory of John Sefton Tilston, Rector The old organ pipes
Sir Peter Van Lore was a notable parishioner of Tylehurst and his tomb can be found within the Lady Chapel.Vanlore tomb heraldry Sir Peter Vanlore Tomb Vanlore tomb figures Vanlore tomb offspring Vanlore tomb epitaph
The Blagrave and Webb families have had links with Reading and the surrounding parishes including St Michael's for many centuries. Reading has some streets named after the Blagrave family.The Blagrave Memorial Robert Webb Memorial
The tryptic painting by Jane Masson is located within the cedilla of the Chancel and depicts local parishioners of St Michael's. It is called The Adoration of the Shepherds.A Tryptic painting by Jane Masson Votive Candle Stand St Michael's Pulpit The Cloisters The Font and Parish Chest 2011 A painting of St Michael circa 1980
Stations of the Cross
These Icons can be found within the cloister area of the Church. There are 14 of them and they represent the story of Jesus, his passion, death and resurrection.
From the earliest days, followers of Jesus told the story of his passion, death and resurrection. When pilgrims came to see Jerusalem, they were anxious to see the sites where Jesus was. These sites became important holy connections with Jesus. Eventually, following in the footsteps of the Lord, along the way of the cross, became a part of the pilgrimage to visit. The stations, as we know them today, came about when it was no longer easy or even possibly to visit the holy sites. In the 1500's, villages all over Europe started creating 'replicas' of the way of the cross, with small shrines commemorating the places along the route in Jerusalem. These shrines became the set of 14 stations we know and were placed in almost every Church in the world.
Each station has an explanation of the scene portrayed. You might like to consider this when viewing each station.
Station of the Cross No 1
Jesus is Condemned to Die
|Station No 1 - Jesus is Condemned to Die|
Jesus stands in the most human of places. he has already experienced profound solidarity with so many on this earth, by being beaten and tortured. Now he is wrongfully condemned to punishment of death. His commitment to entering our lives completely begins his final steps. He has said 'yes' to God and placed his life in God's hands. We follow him in this final surrender, and contemplate with reverence each place along the way, as he is broken and given for us.
Station of the Cross No 2
Jesus carries his Cross
|Station No 2 - Jesus carries his Cross|
Jesus is made to carry the cross on which he will die. It represents the weight of all our crosses. What he must have felt as he first took it upon his shoulders! With each step he enters more deeply into our human experience. He walks in the path of human misery and suffering, and experiences its crushing weight.
Station of the Cross No 3
Jesus falls the first time
|Station No 3 - Jesus falls the first time.|
The weight is unbearable. Jesus falls under it. How could he enter our lives completely without surrendering to the crushing weight of the life of so many on this earth! He lays on the ground and knows the experience of weakness beneath unfair burdens. He feels the powerlessness of wondering if he will ever be able to continue. He is pulled up and made to continue.
Station of the Cross No 4
Jesus meets his Mother
|Station No 4 - Jesus meets his Mother|
Jesus' path takes him to a powerful source of his strength to continue. All his life, his mother had taught him the meaning of the words, "Behold, the handmaid of the Lord." Now they look into each other's eyes. How pierced-through her heart must be! How pained he must be to see her tears! Now, her grace-filled smile blesses his mission and stirs his heart to its depth. Love and trust in God bind them together.
Station of the Cross No 5
Simon Helps Jesus Carry His Cross
|Station No 5 - Simon Helps Jesus Carry His Cross|
Jesus even experiences our struggle to receive help. He is made to experience the poverty of not being able to carry his burden alone. He enters into the experience of all who must depend upon others to survive. He is deprived of the satisfaction of carrying this burden on his own.
Station of the Cross No 6
Veronica wipes Jesus' Face
|Station No 6 - Veronica wipes Jesus' Face|
Jesus' journey is at times brutal. He has entered into the terrible experiences of rejection and injustice. He has been whipped and beaten. His face shows the signs of his solidarity with all who have ever suffered injustice and vile, abusive treatment. He encounters a compassionate, loving disciple who wipes the vulgar spit and mocking blood from his face. On her veil, she discovers the image of his face - his gift to her. And, for us to contemplate forever.
Station of the Cross No 7
Jesus Falls the Second Time
|Station No 7 - Jesus Falls the Second Time.|
Even with help, Jesus stumbles and falls to the ground. In deep exhaustion he stares at the earth beneath him. "Remember, you are dust and to dust you will return." He has seen death before. Now he can feel the profound weakness of disability and disease and aging itself, there on his knees, under the weight of his cross.
Station of the Cross No 8
Jesus Meets the Women of Jerusalem
|Station No 8 - Jesus Meets the Women of Jerusalem|
The women of Jerusalem, and their children, come out to comfort and thank him. They had seen his compassion and welcomed his words of healing and freedom. He had broken all kinds of social and religious conventions to connect with them. Now they are here to support him. He feels their grief. He suffers, knowing he can't remain to help them more in this life. He knows the mystery of facing the separation of death.
Station of the Cross No 9
Jesus Falls the Third Time
|Station No 9 - Jesus Falls the Third Time|
This last fall is devastating. Jesus can barely proceed to the end. Summoning all this remaining strength, supported by his inner trust in God, Jesus collapses under the weight of the cross. His executioners look at him as a broken man, pathetic yet paying a price he deserves. They help him up so he can make it up the hill of crucifixion.
Station of the Cross No 10
Jesus is Stripped
|Station No 10 - Jesus is Stripped|
Part of the indignity is to be crucified naked. Jesus is completely stripped of any pride The wounds on his back are torn open again. He experiences the ultimate vulnerability of the defenseless. No shield or security protects him. As they stare at him, his eyes turn to heaven.
Station of the Cross No 11
Jesus is Nailed to the Cross
|Station No 11 - Jesus is Nailed to the Cross|
Huge nails are hammered through his hands and feet to fix him on the cross. He is bleeding much more seriously now. As the cross is lifted up, the weight of his life hangs on those nails. Every time he struggles to pull himself up to breathe, his ability to cling to life slips away.
Station of the Cross No 12
Jesus Dies on the Cross
|Station No 12 - Jesus Dies on the Cross|
Between two criminals, a mocking title above his head, with only Mary and John and Mary Magdalene to support him, Jesus surrenders his last breath: "Into your hands I commend my spirit."
Station of the Cross No 13
Jesus is Taken Down from the Cross
|Station No 13 - Jesus is Taken Down from the Cross|
What tender mourning! Jesus' lifeless body lies in his mother's arms. He has truly died. A profound sacrifice, complete.
Station of the Cross No 14
Jesus is Laid in the Tomb
|Station No 14 - Jesus is Laid in the Tomb|
They take the body of Jesus to its resting place. The huge stone over the tomb is the final sign of the permanence of death. In this final act of surrender, who would have imagined this tomb would soon be empty or that Jesus would show himself alive to his disciples, or that they would recognize him in the breaking of bread? Oh, that our hearts might burn within us, as we realize how he had to suffer and die so as to enter into his glory, for us.