Daily Prayer: a resource of Forward Movement

The Liturgical Calendar: The Church Remembers

Today the church remembers Holy Cross Day.

“And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself ” (John 12:32). It seemed in the fourth century that these words of Jesus were swiftly being fulfilled. Christianity had swept over the known civilized world. A Christian emperor now reigned from the throne of the Caesars and it was he, Constantine the Great, who, on this day in 335, dedicated the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem as a monument to the triumph of the Lord over the grave. This day was celebrated throughout Christendom as the feast of the lifting-up of the Cross of Christ over all the world.

The hope that the time was at hand when all humanity would acknowledge the Lordship of the Savior was premature. But this dream has never been forgotten. Christian people still work and pray for the time when everyone everywhere will return to their Creator, the Crucified and Risen Lord. This is a day for rejoicing in that hope, as Abraham rejoiced in looking forward to Christ’s coming, though he had only the most vague notion of what it would be like. We look forward with joyful anticipation to the day when all people shall find their Lord, and we work toward making him known in every corner of his creation.

O God, who by the passion of your blessed Son has made his shameful death to be unto us the sign of life and peace: Grant us so to glory in the Cross of Christ, that we may gladly suffer shame and loss. Amen.

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