I wonder where I’ll find Veronica next? I’m always looking for more stories about the connections Jesus might have had with women. There’s an account about a woman named Veronica in the apocryphal Gospel of Nicodemus in a section called the Acts of Pilate. According to the Acts of Pilate Veronica is the same woman Jesus healed of a flow of blood in Luke 8.
I first saw Veronica’s name when I visited the Via Dolorosa in Jerusalem. The Via Dolorosa is said to be the path Jesus walked with his cross. The story goes that at one point a woman named Veronica used her veil to wipe the sweat from Jesus’ face as he walked by her. I photographed this stone marker bearing Veronica’s name. I was intrigued and wanted to learn more about Veronica.
When I visited The Church of the Beatitudes on the Sea of Galilee near Capernaum I saw a beautiful wood carving of Veronica. Part of Veronica’s story is that after she wiped Jesus’ face with her veil the image of his face was left in the veil and that is clearly shown in the carving.
It was a couple of years later when I came across another rendition of the Veronica story when I saw this painting of Veronica in the Stadel Art Museum in Frankfurt, Germany. It was done by Robert Campin a Flemish artist who lived from 1375-1444.
My last night in Costa Rica I walked into the Church of the Immaculate Conception of Mary in Liberia and as I made my way around the sanctuary looking at each of the Stations of the Cross I found Veronica again.
Veronica was compassionate but she was also brave. Jesus was about to be crucified and to be identified as a supporter of his was dangerous, dangerous enough that one of his disciples denied even knowing him. But Veronica doesn’t worry about her own safety she is just concerned about doing something kind for Jesus. I wonder where I’ll find Veronica next?