The Exaltation of the Cross: September 14

September 13, 2012

Fr. Marcel Sigrist, O.P., shared the following reflection on The Exaltation of the Cross. Fr. Sigrist is a friar of the Province of France and is the Director of the École biblique et archéologique française de Jérusalem at the Ecole Biblique in Jerusalem. A few years ago I had the opportunity to travel with presidents and administrators of Dominican Colleges and universities in the U.S. I was excited for in my many years as a Dominican it was the first time I would actually be able to see Caleruega, where St. Dominic grew up. High atop one of the hills stood this impressive cross pictured here below.. On September 14th Christians celebrate the Feast of the Triumph of the Cross. Many people may not be familiar with this feast but legend tells us that Saint Helen, the mother of Emperor Constantine, discovered the True Cross in 326 while she was on pilgrimage to Jerusalem. The Church of the Holy Sepulchre was built and remains a place of pilgrimage in Jerusalem. This feast reminds us of the sacrifice by which our salvation was won. For many religious it marks a season of penitential practices that anticipate the Season of Lent, a time to deepen our life in Christ. In the Mass for the feast we pray, we beseech you, Lord Jesus Christ, to bring those you have redeemed by the wood of your life-giving Cross to the glory of the resurrection. Even in the midst of suffering salvation finds its way to bring hope. The devastation of hurricane Isaac, the struggles of the Middle East, and the challenges of secularization remind us of Christ’s Cross even today. Let us join in prayer this month of September and remember those most in need of the hope found in the life-giving Cross of Christ.

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