Thought for the Day – 14 September – Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross
Christians “exalt” (raise on high) the Cross of Christ as the instrument of our salvation. Adoration of the Cross is, thus, adoration of Jesus Christ, the God Man, who suffered and died on this Roman instrument of torture for our redemption from sin and death. The cross represents the One Sacrifice by which Jesus, obedient even unto death, accomplished our salvation. The cross is a symbolic summary of the Passion, Crucifixion and Resurrection of Christ — all in one image.
The Cross — because of what it represents — is the most potent and universal symbol of the Christian faith. It has inspired both liturgical and private devotions: for example, the Sign of the Cross, which is an invocation of the Holy Trinity; the “little” Sign of the Cross on head, lips and heart at the reading of the Gospel; praying the Stations (or Way) of the Cross; and the Veneration of the Cross by the faithful on Good Friday by kissing the feet of the image of Our Saviour crucified.
Placing a crucifix (the cross with an image of Christ’s body upon it) in churches and homes, in classrooms of Catholic schools and in other Catholic institutions, or wearing this image on our persons, is a constant reminder — and witness — of Christ’s ultimate triumph, His victory over sin and death through His suffering and dying on the Cross. (Fr FRANCISCO NASCIMENTO)
We adore You Christ and we praise You, for by Your holy Cross You have redeemed the world.
Quote/s of the Day – 14 September – Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross
“Everything is a reminder of the Cross. We ourselves are made in the shape of a cross.”
“You must accept your cross. If you bear it courageously, it will carry you to heaven.”
“The sign of the cross is the most terrible weapon against the devil. Thus the Church wishes not only, that we have it continually in front of our minds, to recall to us just what our souls are worth and what they cost Jesus Christ but also that we should make it at every juncture ourselves: when we go to bed, when we awaken during the night, when we get up, when we begin any action, and, above all, when we are tempted.”
St John Vianney
“Oh cherished cross! Through thee my most bitter trials are replete with graces!”
St Paul of the Cross
“In the Cross is salvation; in the Cross is life; in the Cross is protection against our enemies; in the Cross is infusion of heavenly sweetness; in the Cross is strength of mind; in the Cross is joy of spirit; in the Cross is excellence of virtue; in the Cross is perfection of holiness. There is no salvation of soul, nor hope of eternal life, save in the Cross.”
Fr Thomas à Kempis, The Inner Life
“The everlasting God has in His wisdom foreseen from eternity the cross He now presents to you as a gift from His inmost heart. The cross He now sends you He has considered with His all-knowing eyes, understood with His divine mind, tested with His wise justice, warmed with loving arms and weighed with His own hands to see that it is not one inch too large nor one ounce too heavy for you. He has blessed it with His holy name, anointed it with His grace, perfumed it with His consolation, taken one last glance at you and your courage and then sent it to you from heaven, a special greeting from God to you, an alms of the all-merciful love of God.”
NOVENA to St Padre Pio/St Pius of Pietrelcina – DAY ONE – 14 September
St Padre Pio you have said:
“Jesus keeps nothing for Himself of what is done for love of Him, and He will repay us very lavishly. Don’t let us make our happiness depend on enjoying wonderful health, or else we should be just like those foolish worldly people to whom it is not given to know the secrets of heaven…. Continue to love Jesus and make an effort to love Him more and more, without wanting to know anything else, He alone will steer us to the haven of salvation.”
Let us Pray:
You generously blessed Your servant, Padre Pio, with the gifts of the Spirit.
You marked his body with the five wounds of Christ Crucified,
as a powerful witness to the saving Passion and Death of Your Son
and as a stirring inspiration to many people of Your infinite mercy, forgiveness and love.
In the confessional, Padre Pio laboured endlessly for the salvation of souls.
Through his powerful intercession, many who suffered were healed of sickness and disease.
Endowed with the gift of discernment, he could read people’s hearts.
With dignity and intense devotion, he celebrated daily Mass,
inviting countless men and women to a greater union with Jesus Christ,
in the Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist.
Through the intercession of Saint Pio,
we confidently beseech You to to grant us the grace of
………………… (state your petition here).
Help us to imitate his example of prayerful holiness and compassion,
so that we, too, may faithfully follow the Risen Lord
and one day rejoice in the Kingdom,
where You live and reign forever and ever. Amen
One Minute Reflection – 14 September – Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross
We proclaim Christ – yes, Christ nailed to the cross; and though it is a stumbling-block to Jews and folly to Greeks, yet to those who have heard his call, Jews and Greeks alike, he is the power of God and the wisdom of God...1 Corinthians 1:23-24
REFLECTION – “We are celebrating the feast of the cross which drove away darkness and brought in the light… Had there been no cross, Christ could not have been crucified. Had there been no cross, Life Itself could not have been nailed to the tree. And if Life had not been nailed to it, they would be no streams of immortality pouring from Christ’s side, blood and water for the world’s cleansing. The legal bond of our sin would not be cancelled, we should not have obtained our freedom, we should not have enjoyed the fruit of the tree of life and the gates of paradise would not stand open. Had there been no cross, death would not have been trodden underfoot, nor hell despoiled… The cross is called Christ’s glory; it is saluted as his triumph.”….St Andrew of Crete (650-740)
PRAYER – O God, who willed that your Only Begotten Son should undergo the Cross to save the human race, grant, we pray, that we, who have known his mystery on earth, may merit the grace of his redemption in heaven.
For you placed the salvation of the human race on the wood of the Cross, so that, where death arose, life might again spring forth and the evil one, who conquered on a tree, might likewise on a tree be conquered through Christ. O cross, you are the glorious sign of victory. Through your power may we share in the triumph of Christ Jesus.
We adore you Christ and we praise you, for by your holy Cross you have redeemed the world. Amen
Our Morning Offering – 14 September – Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross
Traditional Prayer to the Holy Cross
Hail, O Holy Cross!
my light and my strength!
Hail, standard of peace empurpled by the Blood of Jesus
and ornamented by His Sacred Members
as with precious stones!
O Venerable Cross, work of the love of God
and the cruelty of men!
O Cross, the terror of Hell and the object of the veneration
of Heaven and earth,
receive the homage of my faith,
and my love!
I consecrate myself entirely to You
and I attach myself to You forever,
as my Saviour was attached to You
for love of me.
I earnestly beseech You, in virtue of the Precious Blood
which empurpled You,
to take me under Your protection,
to be my support in suffering,
my strength in temptation,
my counsel in doubt,
my light in darkness,
my rule of conduct during life,
my confidence and pledge of salvation at the hour of death.
May Jesus, the Incarnate God, Our Saviour,
Who shed His Blood when nailed to You,
protect me through You
and conduct me to my Heavenly home! Amen
Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross – 14 September, also called Feast of the Triumph of the Cross and Holy Cross Feast.
This feast was observed in Rome before the end of the seventh century. It commemorates the recovery of the Holy Cross, which had been placed on Mount Calvary by St Helena and preserved in Jerusalem but then had fallen into the hands of Chosroas, King of the Persians. The precious relic was recovered and returned to Jerusalem by Emperor Heralius in 629.
The lessons from the Breviary tell us that Emperor Heraclius carried the Cross back to Jerusalem on his shoulders. He was clothed with costly garments and with ornaments of precious stones. But at the entrance to Mount Calvary a strange incident occurred. Try as hard as he would, he could not go forward. Zacharias, the Bishop of Jerusalem, then said to the astonished monarch: “Consider, O Emperor, that with these triumphal ornaments you are far from resembling Jesus carrying His Cross.” The Emperor then put on a penitential garb and continued the journey.
In celebration of the discovery of the Holy Cross, Constantine ordered the construction of churches at the site of the Holy Sepulchre and on Mount Calvary. Those churches were dedicated on September 13 and 14, 335 and shortly thereafter the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross began to be celebrated on the latter date.
The feast slowly spread from Jerusalem to other churches, until, by the year 720, the celebration was universal.
The liturgy of the Cross is a triumphant liturgy. When Moses lifted up the bronze serpent over the people, it was a foreshadowing of the salvation through Jesus when He was lifted up on the Cross. Our Mother Church sings of the triumph of the Cross, the instrument of our redemption. To follow Christ we must take up His cross, follow Him and become obedient until death, even if it means death on the cross. We identify with Christ on the Cross and become co-redeemers, sharing in His suffering and Cross.
We make the Sign of the Cross before prayer which helps to fix our minds and hearts to God. After prayer we make the Sign of the Cross to keep close to God. During trials and temptations our strength and protection is the Sign of the Cross. At Baptism we are sealed with the Sign of the Cross, signifying the fullness of redemption and that we belong to Christ. Let us look to the cross frequently, and realize that when we make the Sign of the Cross we give our entire self to God — mind, soul, heart, body, will, thoughts.
WHY DO WE CELEBRATE THE FEAST OF THE HOLY CROSS?
It’s easy to understand that the Cross is special because Christ used it as the instrument of our salvation. But after His Resurrection, why would Christians continue to look to the Cross? Christ Himself offered us the answer: “If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me” (Luke 9:23). The point of taking up our own cross is not simply self-sacrifice; in doing so, we unite ourselves to the sacrifice of Christ on His Cross.
When we participate in the Mass, the Cross is there, too. The “unbloody sacrifice” offered on the altar is the re-presentation of Christ’s Sacrifice on the Cross. When we receive the Sacrament of Holy Communion, we do not simply unite ourselves to Christ; we nail ourselves to the Cross, dying with Christ so that we might rise with Him.
“For the Jews require signs, and the Greeks seek after wisdom: but we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews indeed a stumbling block and unto the Gentiles foolishness . . . ” (1 Corinthians 1:22-23). Today, more than ever, non-Christians see the Cross as foolishness. What kind of Saviour triumphs through death?
For Christians, however, the Cross is the crossroads of history and the Tree of Life. Christianity without the Cross is meaningless: only by uniting ourselves to Christ’s Sacrifice on the Cross can we enter into eternal life.
O cross, you are the glorious sign of victory.
Through your power may we share in the triumph of Christ Jesus.
Exaltation of the Holy Cross (Feast) – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qsiOJkpPk7w
St Aelia Flaccilla
St Albert of Jerusalem
Bl Claude Laplace
St Cormac of Cashel
St Crescentian of Carthage
St Crescentius of Rome
St Generalis of Carthage
St Giulia Crostarosa
St Jean Gabriel Taurin du Fresse
St Maternus of Cologne
Bl Pedro Bruch Cotacáns
St Rosula of Carthage
St Victor of Carthage