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Reflections: Cath. Basics Sectn. (The Passion/Cross)

The Crucifixion

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Catholic Basics Section:

The Passion / The Cross

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The Passion / The Cross

 

Category
Quotation

The Passion / The Cross

Also See: Good Friday (Topic Page)

"Despised, and the most abject of men, a man of sorrows, and acquainted with infirmity: and his look was as it were hidden and despised, whereupon we esteemed him not. Surely he hath borne our infirmities and carried our sorrows: and we have thought him as it were a leper, and as one struck by God and afflicted. But he was wounded for our iniquities, he was bruised for our sins: the chastisement of our peace was upon him, and by his bruises we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray, every one hath turned aside into his own way: and the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all. He was offered because it was his own will, and he opened not his mouth" (Isa. 53:3-7)

"All they that saw me have laughed me to scorn: they have spoken with the lips, and wagged the head. He hoped in the Lord, let him deliver him: let him save him, seeing he delighteth in him." (Ps. 21:8-9)

"They have opened their mouths against me, as a lion ravening and roaring. I am poured out like water; and all my bones are scattered. My heart is become like wax melting in the midst of my bowels. My strength is dried up like a potsherd, and my tongue hath cleaved to my jaws: and thou hast brought me down into the dust of death. For many dogs have encompassed me: the council of the malignant hath besieged me. They have dug my hands and feet. They have numbered all my bones. And they have looked and stared upon me. They parted my garments amongst them; and upon my vesture they cast lots." (Ps. 21:14-19)

"They are multiplied above the hairs of my head, who hate me without cause. My enemies are grown strong who have wrongfully persecuted me: then did I pay that which I took not away." (Ps. 68:5)

"In thy sight are all they that afflict me; my heart hath expected reproach and misery. And I looked for one that would grieve together with me, but there was none: and for one that would comfort me, and I found none. And they gave me gall for my food, and in my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink." (Ps. 68:21-22)

"And it came to pass, when Jesus had ended all these words, he said to his disciples: You know that after two days shall be the pasch: and the Son of man shall be delivered up to be crucified." (Mt. 26:1-2)

"And he taketh Peter and James and John with him: and he began to fear and to be heavy. And he saith to them: My soul is sorrowful even unto death. Stay you here and watch." (Mk. 14:33-34)

"And he was withdrawn away from them a stone's cast. And kneeling down, he prayed. Saying: Father, if thou wilt, remove this chalice from me: but yet not my will, but thine be done. And there appeared to him an angel from heaven, strengthening him. And being in an agony, he prayed the longer. And his sweat became as drops of blood, trickling down upon the ground. And when he rose up from prayer and was come to the disciples, he found them sleeping for sorrow. And he said to them: Why sleep you? Arise: pray: lest you enter into temptation. As he was yet speaking, behold a multitude; and he that was called Judas, one of the twelve, went before them and drew near to Jesus, for to kiss him. And Jesus said to him: Judas, dost thou betray the Son of man with a kiss?" (Lk. 22:41-48)

"And some began to spit on him and to cover his face and to buffet him and to say unto him: Prophesy. And the servants struck him with the palms their hands." (Mk. 14:65)

"And the men that held him mocked him and struck him. And they blindfolded him and smote his face. And they asked him saying: Prophesy: Who is it that struck thee? And blaspheming, many other things they said against him." (Lk. 22:63-65)

"I am the good shepherd, and I know mine and mine know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father; and I will lay down my life for the sheep... No one takes it from me, but I lay it down on my own. I have power to lay it down, and power to take it up again." (Our Lord Jesus Christ, Jn. 10:14-15, 18)

"The high priest therefore asked Jesus of his disciples and of his doctrine. Jesus answered him: I have spoken openly to the world. I have always taught in the synagogue and in the temple, whither all the Jews resort: and in secret I have spoken nothing. Why askest thou me? Ask them who have heard what I have spoken unto them. Behold they know what things I have said. And when he had said these things, one of the servants standing by gave Jesus a blow, saying: Answerest thou the high priest so? Jesus answered him: If I have spoken evil, give testimony of the evil; but if well, why strikest thou me? And Annas sent him bound to Caiphas the high priest." (Jn. 18:19-24)

"And Pilate, calling together the chief priests and the magistrates and the people, Said to them: You have presented unto me this man as one that perverteth the people. And behold I, having examined him before you, find no cause in this man, in those things wherein you accuse him. No, nor Herod neither. For, I sent you to him: and behold, nothing worthy of death is done to him. I will chastise him therefore and release him. Now of necessity he was to release unto them one upon the feast day. But the whole multitude together cried out, saying: Away with this man, and release unto us Barabbas: Who, for a certain sedition made in the city and for a murder, was cast into prison. And Pilate again spoke to them, desiring to release Jesus. But they cried again, saying: Crucify him, Crucify him. And he said to them the third time: Why, what evil hath this man done? I find no cause of death in him. I will chastise him therefore and let him go. But they were instant with loud voices, requiring that he might be crucified. And their voices prevailed. And Pilate gave sentence that it should be as they required. And he released unto them him who for murder and sedition had been cast into prison, whom they had desired. But Jesus he delivered up to their will." (Lk. 23:13-25)

"And the governor answering, said to them: Whether will you of the two to be released unto you? But they said: Barabbas. Pilate saith to them: What shall I do then with Jesus that is called Christ? They say all: Let him be crucified. The governor said to them: Why, what evil hath he done? But they cried out the more, saying: Let him be crucified. And Pilate seeing that he prevailed nothing, but that rather a tumult was made, taking water washed his hands before the people, saying: I am innocent of the blood of this just man. Look you to it. And the whole people answering, said: His blood be upon us and upon our children. Then he released to them Barabbas: and having scourged Jesus, delivered him unto them to be crucified. Then the soldiers of the governor, taking Jesus into the hall, gathered together unto him the whole band. And stripping him, they put a scarlet cloak about him. And platting a crown of thorns, they put it upon his head, and a reed in his right hand. And bowing the knee before him, they mocked him, saying: Hail, King of the Jews. And spitting upon him, they took the reed and struck his head. And after they had mocked him, they took off the cloak from him and put on him his own garments and led him away to crucify him." (Mt. 27:21-31)

"And Pilate again answering, saith to them: What will you then that I do to the king of the Jews?. But they again cried out: Crucify him. And Pilate saith to them: Why, what evil hath he done? But they cried out the more: Crucify him. And so Pilate being willing to satisfy the people, released to them Barabbas: and delivered up Jesus, when he had scourged him, to be crucified. And the soldiers led him away into the court of the palace: and they called together the whole band. And they clothed him with purple: and, platting a crown of thorns, they put it upon him. And they began to salute him: Hail, king of the Jews. And they struck his head with a reed: and they did spit on him. And bowing their knees, they adored him. And after they had mocked him, they took off the purple from him and put his own garments on him: and they led him out to crucify him. And they forced one Simon a Cyrenian, who passed by coming out of the country, the father of Alexander and of Rufus, to take up his cross. And they bring him into the place called Golgotha, which being interpreted is, the place of Calvary. And they gave him to drink wine mingled with myrrh. But he took it not. And crucifying him, they divided his garments, casting lots upon them, what every man should take. And it was the third hour: and they crucified him. And the inscription of his cause was written over: The King of the Jews. And with him they crucify two thieves: the one on his right hand, and the other on his left. And the scripture was fulfilled, which saith: And with the wicked he was reputed." (Mk. 15:12-28)

"Then therefore Pilate took Jesus and scourged him. And the soldiers platting a crown of thorns, put it upon his head: and they put on him a purple garment. And they came to him and said: Hail, king of the Jews. And they gave him blows. Pilate therefore went forth again and saith to them: Behold, I bring him forth unto you, that you may know that I find no cause in him. (Jesus therefore came forth, bearing the crown of thorns and the purple garment.) And he saith to them: Behold the Man. When the chief priests, therefore, and the servants had seen him, they cried out, saying: Crucify him, Crucify him. Pilate saith to them: Take him you, and crucify him: for I find no cause in him. The Jews answered him: We have a law; and according to the law he ought to die, because he made himself the Son of God. When Pilate therefore had heard this saying, he feared the more. And he entered into the hall again; and he said to Jesus: Whence art thou? But Jesus gave him no answer. Pilate therefore saith to him: Speakest thou not to me? Knowest thou not that I have power to crucify thee, and I have power to release thee? Jesus answered: Thou shouldst not have any power against me, unless it were given thee from above. Therefore, he that hath delivered me to thee hath the greater sin. And from henceforth Pilate sought to release him. But the Jews cried out, saying: If thou release this man, thou art not Caesar's friend. For whosoever maketh himself a king speaketh against Caesar. Now when Pilate had heard these words, he brought Jesus forth and sat down in the judgment seat, in the place that is called Lithostrotos, and in Hebrew Gabbatha. And it was the parasceve of the pasch, about the sixth hour: and he saith to the Jews: Behold your king. But they cried out: Away with him: Away with him: Crucify him. Pilate saith to them: shall I crucify your king? The chief priests answered: We have no king but Caesar. Then therefore he delivered him to them to be crucified. And they took Jesus and led him forth. And bearing his own cross, he went forth to the place which is called Calvary, but in Hebrew Golgotha. Where they crucified him, and with him two others, one on each side, and Jesus in the midst. And Pilate wrote a title also: and he put it upon the cross. And the writing was: Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Jews. This title therefore many of the Jews did read: because the place where Jesus was crucified was nigh to the city. And it was written in Hebrew, in Greek, and in Latin. Then the chief priests of the Jews said to Pilate: Write not: The King of the Jews. But that he said: I am the King of the Jews. Pilate answered: What I have written, I have written." (Jn. 19:1-22)

"And there were also two other malefactors led with him to be put to death. And when they were come to the place which is called Calvary, they crucified him there: and the robbers, one on the right hand, and the other on the left. And Jesus said: Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do. But they, dividing his garments, cast lots. And the people stood beholding. And the rulers with them derided him, saying: He saved others: let him save himself, if he be Christ, the elect of God. And the soldiers also mocked him, coming to him and offering him vinegar, And saying: If thou be the king of the Jews, save thyself." (Lk. 23:32-37) 

"Now there stood by the cross of Jesus, his mother and his mother's sister, Mary of Cleophas, and Mary Magdalen. When Jesus therefore had seen his mother and the disciple standing whom he loved, he saith to his mother: Woman, behold thy son.. After that, he saith to the disciple: Behold thy mother. And from that hour, the disciple took her to his own. Afterwards, Jesus knowing that all things were now accomplished, that the scripture might be fulfilled, said: I thirst. Now there was a vessel set there, full of vinegar. And they, putting a sponge full of vinegar about hyssop, put it to his mouth. Jesus therefore, when he had taken the vinegar, said: It is consummated. And bowing his head, he gave up the ghost." (Jn. 19:25-30) 

"Now from the sixth hour, there was darkness over the whole earth, until the ninth hour. And about the ninth hour, Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying: Eli, Eli, lamma sabacthani? That is, My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken me? And some that stood there and heard said: This man calleth Elias. And immediately one of them running took a sponge and filled it with vinegar and put it on a reed and gave him to drink. And the others said: Let be. Let us see whether Elias will come to deliver him. And Jesus again crying with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost. And behold the veil of the temple was rent in two from the top even to the bottom: and the earth quaked and the rocks were rent. And the graves were opened: and many bodies of the saints that had slept arose, And coming out of the tombs after his resurrection, came into the holy city and appeared to many. Now the centurion and they that were with him watching Jesus, having seen the earthquake and the things that were done, were sore afraid, saying: Indeed this was the Son of God." (Mt. 27:45-54)

"And when the sixth hour was come, there was darkness over the whole earth until the ninth hour. And at the ninth hour, Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying: Eloi, Eloi, lamma sabacthani? Which is, being interpreted: My God, My God, Why hast thou forsaken me? And some of the standers by hearing, said: Behold he calleth Elias. And one running and filling a sponge with vinegar and putting it upon a reed, gave him to drink, saying: Stay, let us see if Elias come to take him down. And Jesus, having cried out with a loud voice, gave up the ghost. And the veil of the temple was rent in two, from the top to the bottom. And the centurion who stood over against him, seeing that crying out in this manner he had given up the ghost. said: Indeed this man was the son of God." (Mk. 15:33-39)  

"For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ, and him crucified." (St. Paul, 1 Cor. 2:2)

"...whoever does not take up his cross and follow after me is not worthy of me." (Our Lord Jesus Christ, Mt. 10:38)

"Then Jesus said to his disciples, 'Whoever wishes to come after me must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me.'" (Mt. 16:24)

"[Jesus] summoned the crowd with his disciples and said to them, 'Whoever wishes to come after me must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me.'" (Mk. 8:34)

"Then [Jesus] said to all, 'If anyone wishes to come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.'" (Lk. 9:23)

"Whoever does not carry his own cross and come after me cannot be my disciple." (Our Lord Jesus Christ, Lk. 14:27)

"The message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. For it is written: 'I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and the learning of the learned I will set aside.'" (1 Cor. 1:18-19)

"Who, though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God something to be grasped. Rather, he emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, coming in human likeness; and found human in appearance, he humbled himself, becoming obedient to death, even death on a cross. Because of this, God greatly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bend, of those in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father." (Phil. 2:6-11)

"He himself bore our sins in his body upon the cross, so that, free from sin, we might live for righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed." (St. Peter, 1 Pt. 2:24)

"[I]ndeed, he dies nailed to the Cross." (Pope John Paul II)

"The Cross I ever adore." (St. Thomas Aquinas, Doctor of the Church and "greatest theologian in the history of the Church")

"Death blossomed in paradise but was slain on the cross." (St. John Chrysostom, Doctor of the Church)

"The cross is the ladder to Heaven." (Catechism of the Cure de Ars)

"[N]o one can obtain salvation unless through Christ and the merits of His Passion." (Catechism of the Council of Trent)

"The Cross is the gift that God makes to His friends." (Catechism of the Cure of Ars)

"The Cross is my refuge." (St. Thomas Aquinas, Doctor of the Church and "greatest theologian in the history of the Church")

"Mount Calvary is the academy of love." (St. Francis de Sales, Doctor of the Church)

"What was done on Calvary avails for us only in the degree that we repeat it in our own lives." (Archbishop Fulton Sheen)

"He gave Himself wholly to you: He left nothing to himself." (St. John Chrysostom, Doctor of the Church)

"The greater the humiliations He endured for me, the more I owe Him." (St. Jerome, Doctor of the Church)

"He that seeks not the cross of Christ seeks not the glory of Christ." (St. John of the Cross, Doctor of the Church)

"Was Jesus Christ afraid of being laughed at?" (St. John Vianney)

"The Blood, poured out in abundance, has washed the whole world clean." (St. John Chrysostom, Doctor of the Church)

"A house founded on the Cross will fear neither wind, nor rain, nor storm." (St. John Vianney)

"It is by the Cross that we go to Heaven." (Catechism of the Cure de Ars)

"To know Jesus and Him crucified is my philosophy, and there is none higher." (St. Bernard, Doctor of the Church)

"Here learn the science of the saints: All is to be found in the passion of Jesus." (St. Paul of the Cross)

"You should carry the passion of God in your hearts, for it is man's consolation in his last hour." (St. Nicholas of Flue)

"Let Him Who was fastened to the cross be security fastened to your hearts." (St. Augustine, Doctor of the Church)

"O the wonderful power of the Cross! O the unspeakable glory of the Passion!" (Pope St. Leo I the Great, Doctor of the Church)

"No one can be just unless he is granted a share in the merits of the Passion of our Lord Jesus Christ" (Council of Trent)

"Jesus Christ by His passion and death gave to the sacraments the power of conferring grace." (Catechism of Pope St. Pius X)

"Without the priest, the Death and Passion of Our Lord would be of no avail." (Catechism of the Cure de Ars)

"[The Cross] is the antidote that cures the sting of the serpent's wound." (Ancient Easter Sequence)

"Is there anything that a generous heart would not willingly suffer on contemplating Jesus crucified?" (St. Raphaela Mary)

"What, O Lord, could more clearly show me than do thy Wounds, that thou art sweet and mild, and plenteous in mercy?" (St. Bernard, Doctor of the Church)

"The Cross is my sure salvation." (St. Thomas Aquinas, Doctor of the Church and "greatest theologian in the history of the Church")

"For His return from death becomes to our mortal race the commencement of our return to the immortal life." (St. Gregory of Nyssa)

"Let us go often to the foot of the Cross... We shall learn there what God has done for us, and what we ought to do for him." (St. John Vianney)

"And these also unwillingly confess that He saved others, for it follows, Saying, He saved others, let him save himself... (Lk. 23:35)" (St. Bede the Venerable, Doctor of the Church)

"From the sufferings and death of Christ we learn God's love for man and the evil of sin, for which God, who is all-just, demands such great satisfaction." (Baltimore Catechism)

"It is certain that, if I had sinned less, Thou, my Jesus, wouldst have suffered less." (St. Alphonsus Liguori, Doctor of the Church)

"Observe Christ's mercifulness; He is evil spoken of, yet He answers with mildness" (St. John Chrysostom, Doctor of the Church)

"He died in accord with His reception of our nature; and He did not die, in accord with the substance of eternal life." (St. Ambrose of Milan, Doctor of the Church, 382 A.D.)

"We must never think from whence crosses come: they come from God. It is always God who gives us this way of proving our love to Him." (Catechism of the Cure of Ars)

"And while He hangs from the cross are we not at a loss which to deplore, His agony, or His ignominy, or both?" (Catechism of the Council of Trent)

"Our Lord's atoning death on the Cross removed the breach between God and his creatures, atoned for all sin, and made it possible for us to enter heaven."

"The Mass is the same sacrifice as the sacrifice of the cross because in the Mass the victim is the same, and the principal priest is the same, Jesus Christ." (Baltimore Catechism)

"He who condemned Jesus Christ to be crucified was Pontius Pilate, the Governor of Judea who, through recognizing His innocence, cravenly yielded to the threats of the people of Jerusalem." (Catechism of Pope St. Pius X)

"Triumphing over the agonies of the Cross, the bitterness of death, the shame of the most ignominious tortures, nothing costs Him too dear when He has to prove that He loves us." (Catechism of the Cure de Ars)

"The Holy Mass is the Sacrifice of the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ offered on our altars under the appearances of bread and wine, in commemoration of the Sacrifice of the Cross." (Catechism of Pope St. Pius X)

"In His Passion and death the Son of God, our Savior, intended to atone for and blot out the sins of all ages, to offer for them to his Father a full and abundant satisfaction." (Catechism of the Council of Trent)

"For Thy cross is the source of all blessings, cause of all the gifts of grace; through it to them that believe is given strength out of weakness, glory out of shame, life out of death." (Pope St. Leo the Great, Doctor of the Church, 5th Century A.D.)

"Look at His adorable Face. Look at His glazed and sunken eyes. Look at His wounds. Look Jesus in the Face. There, you will see how He loves us." (St. Therese of Lisieux, Doctor of the Church)

"For if the very idea of impending evils was overwhelming, and the sweat of blood shows that it was, what are we to suppose their actual endurance to have been?" (Catechism of the Council of Trent)

"Even the demons were not solely responsible for crucifying Him; it was you who crucified Him with them, and you continue to crucify Him by taking pleasure in your vices and sins." (St. Francis of Assisi)

"Let us fix our gaze on the blood of Christ and know how precious it is to His Father because it was poured out for our salvation and brought the grace of repentance to the whole world." (Pope St. Clement of Rome, 1st century A.D.)

"For by the sacrifice of His own body He did two things: He put an end to the law of death which barred our way; and He made a new beginning of life for us, by giving us the hope of resurrection." (St. Athanasius, Doctor of the Church)

"Take the holy crucifix in your hands, kiss its wounds with great love, and ask Him to preach you a sermon. Listen to what the thorns, the nails, and that Divine Blood say to you. Oh! What a sermon." (St. Paul of the Cross)

"If anyone does not confess that Jesus Christ, our Lord, who was crucified in the flesh is true God, and Lord of glory, and one of the Holy Trinity, let such a one be anathema." (Council of Constantinople II, 553 A.D.)

"Jesus Christ Himself instituted the Sacrifice of the Holy Mass when He instituted the Sacrament of the Blessed Eucharist and said that this should be done in memory of His passion." (Catechism of Pope St. Pius X)

"Christ's Passion - A Satisfaction, A Sacrifice, A Redemption An Example. The pastor should teach that all these inestimable and divine blessings flow to us from the Passion of Christ." (Catechism of the Council of Trent)

"Again, it (the Passion of Christ) was a sacrifice most acceptable to God, for when offered by His Son on the altar of the cross, it entirely appeased the wrath and indignation of the Father." (Catechism of the Council of Trent)

"To communicate the efficacy of the Passion of Christ our Lord is an effect common to all the Sacraments; but of Baptism alone does the Apostle say, that by it we die and are buried together with Christ." (Catechism of the Council of Trent)

"Christ our Lord tempered with no admixture of sweetness the bitter chalice of His Passion but permitted His human nature to feel as acutely every species of torment as if He were only man, and not also God." (Catechism of the Council of Trent)

"His hands and feet were fastened with nails to the cross; His head was pierced with thorns and smitten with a reed; His face was befouled with spittle and buffeted with blows; His whole body was covered with stripes." (Catechism of the Council of Trent)

"On the Cross Jesus Christ prayed for His enemies; gave His own Most Blessed Mother as a Mother to St. John, and, in his person, to all of us; offered up His death in sacrifice; and satisfied the justice of God for the sins of men." (Catechism of Pope St. Pius X)

"Remember then, that although you were made from nothing, you were not redeemed with nothing. In six days God created all things, including you, but for thirty years he worked out your salvation including the ignominy of dying on the cross." (St. Bernard of Clairvaux, Doctor of the Church)

"They did it then mockingly. For when the rulers scoffed, what can we say of the crowd? For it follows, And the people stood, who in truth had entreated that He should be crucified, waiting, namely, for an end. And the rulers also with them derided." (St. Theophylact)

"Those who share in this Blood have taken their stand with angels, and archangels, and the powers from on high, clad in the royal uniform of Christ with spiritual weapons in their hands. Yet greater still than that: They are wearing the King Himself!" (St. John Chrysostom, Doctor of the Church)

"And it is worthy of remark, that the Jews blaspheme and mock the name of Christ, which was delivered to them by the authority of Scripture; whereas the soldiers, as being ignorant of the Scriptures, insult not Christ the chosen of God, but the King of the Jews." (St. Bede the Venerable, Doctor of the Church)

"For of such value is that price paid by Christ the Lord on the cross, and communicated to us through the Sacraments, received either actually or in purpose and desire, that it obtains and accomplishes for us the pardon of our sins" (Catechism of the Council of Trent)

"For, through the Sacraments, as through a channel, must flow into the soul the efficacy of the Passion of Christ, that is, the grace which He merited for us on the altar of the cross, and without which we cannot hope for salvation." (Catechism of the Council of Trent)

"If the good God sends us crosses, we resist, we complain, we murmur; we are so averse to whatever contradicts us, that we want to be always in a box of cotton: but we ought to be put into a box of thorns. It is by the Cross that we go to Heaven." (Catechism of the Cure of Ars)

"He should also be taught not to suffer a day to pass without devoting a portion of it to meditation on some mystery of the Passion of our Lord, and to exciting and inflaming himself to the imitation and most ardent love of his Redeemer." (Catechism of the Council of Trent)

"This degree of satisfaction appeases God and renders Him propitious to us; and it is a satisfaction for which we are indebted to Christ our Lord alone, who paid the price of our sins on the cross, and offered to God a superabundant satisfaction." (Catechism of the Council of Trent)

"And yet there is truly nothing that more eloquently proclaims His supreme love and admirable charity towards us, than the inexplicable mystery of the Passion of Jesus Christ, whence springs that never-failing fountain to wash away the defilements of sin." (Catechism of the Council of Trent)

"In a certain sense it can be said that on Calvary Christ built a font of purification and salvation which He filled with the blood He shed; but if men do not bathe in it and there wash away the stains of their iniquities, they can never be purified and saved." (Pope Pius XII, "Mediator Dei", 1947 A.D.)

"With all other men the grave puts an end to their name and their glory; whereas with Jesus his sepulchre is the trophy of his victory; we proclaim him to be the Messias, the King of ages, the Son of God, because by his own death he conquered death." (Dom Gueranger)

"The thief looked above the head of our Blessed Lord and saw a sign which read: 'KING.' Queer king that! For a crown: thorns. For royal purple: His own blood. For a throne: a Cross. For courtiers: executioners. For a coronation: a Crucifixion. And yet beneath all that dross the thief saw the gold; amidst all those blasphemies, he prayed." (Archbishop Fulton Sheen)

"...death has not destroyed this Body which was pierced with nails and scourged... this is the Body which was once covered with blood, pierced by a lance, from which issued saving fountains upon the world, one of blood and the other of water... This Body He gave to us to keep and eat, as a mark of His intense love." (St. John Chrysostom, Doctor of the Church)

"You cannot better appreciate your worth than by looking into the mirror of the Cross of Christ; there you will learn how you are to deflate your pride, how you must mortify the desires of the flesh, how you are to pray to your Father for those who persecute you, and to commend your spirit into God's hands." (St. Anthony of Padua, Doctor of the Church)

"[T]he Master takes upon Himself the stripes belonging to the servant, the servant is glorified by the glory of the Master. That is why the cross can be called the cross of the Lord of Glory, and why every tongue can confess, to the glory of God the Father, that Jesus Christ is Lord." (St. Gregory of Nyssa, c. 380 A.D.) 

"What is a man able to find so valuable that he can give it for the ransom of his soul? Yet one thing was found that was worth as much as all men together. It was given as the ransom price for our souls, the holy and most precious blood of our Lord Jesus Christ, which He poured out for all of us; we were, therefore, 'bought dearly'." (St. Basil the Great, Doctor of the Church)

"Eden was now being reversed. Three things cooperated in our fall: a disobedient man, Adam; a proud woman, Eve; and a tree. God takes the three elements that lead to the defeat of man and uses them as the instruments of victory: the obedient new Adam, Christ; the humble new Eve, Mary; and the tree of the Cross." (Archbishop Fulton Sheen)

"Should anyone inquire why the Son of God underwent His most bitter Passion, he will find that besides the guilt inherited from our first parents the principal causes were the vices and crimes which have been perpetrated from the beginning of the world to the present day and those which will be committed to the end of time." (Catechism of the Council of Trent)

"Indeed, if one thing more than another presents difficulty to the mind and understanding of man, assuredly it is the mystery of the cross, which, beyond all doubt, must be considered the most difficult of all; so much so that only with great difficulty can we grasp the fact that our salvation depends on the cross, and on Him who for us was nailed thereon." (Catechism of the Council of Trent)

"Death has become like a tyrant who has been completely conquered by the legitimate monarch; bound hand and foot the passers-by sneer at him, hitting him and abusing him, no longer afraid of his cruelty and rage, because of the king who has conquered him. So had death been conquered and branded for what it is by the Savior on the cross." (St. Athanasius, Doctor of the Church)

"In that one and the same event, there is the sign of sin's utter depravity and the seal of divine forgiveness. From that point on, no man can look upon a crucifix and say that sin is not serious, nor can he ever say that it cannot be forgiven. Buy the way He suffered, He revealed the reality of sin; by the way He bore it, He shows His mercy toward the sinner." (Archbishop Fulton Sheen)

"The Sacrifice of the Mass is substantially the same as that of the Cross, for the same Jesus Christ, Who offered Himself on the Cross, it is Who offers Himself by the hands of the priests, His ministers, on our altars; but as regards the way in which He is offered, the Sacrifice of the Mass differs from the Sacrifice of the Cross, though retaining the most intimate and essential relation to it." (Catechism of Pope St. Pius X)

"It is the Victim who has suffered that forgives: and in that combination of a Victim so humanly beautiful, so divinely loving, so wholly innocent, does one find a Great Crime and a Greater Forgiveness. Under the shelter of the Blood of Christ, the worst sinners may take their stand; for there is a power in that Blood to turn back the tides of vengeance which threaten to drown the world." (Archbishop Fulton Sheen)

"In the consideration of Christ's Passion there is something that causes sorrow, namely, the human defect, the removal of which made it necessary for Christ to suffer (Luke 24:25); and there is something that causes joy, namely, God's loving-kindness to us in giving us such a deliverance." (St. Thomas Aquinas, Doctor of the Church and "greatest theologian in the history of the Church")

"They smite the head of Christ with a reed, who speak against His divinity, and endeavor to maintain their error by the authority of Holy Scripture, which is written by a reed. They spit upon His face who reject in abominable words the presence of His grace, and deny that Jesus is come in the flesh. And they mock Him with adoration who believe in Him, but despise Him with perverse works." (Bl. Rabanus Maurus)

"No, it is not enough for our salvation that Jesus Christ has died for us; it is also necessary that the fruit of His Passion and death be applied to each one of us, which is accomplished especially by means of the Sacraments instituted for this end by Jesus Christ Himself; and as many either do not receive the Sacraments at all, or do not receive them well, they thus render the death of Jesus Christ useless in their regard." (Catechism of Pope St. Pius X)

"If then Death was the supreme moment for which Christ lived, it was therefore the one thing He wished to have remembered. He did not ask that men should write down His Words into a Scripture; He did not ask that His kindness to the poor should be recorded in history; but He did ask that men remember His Death. And in order that its memory might not be any haphazard narrative on the part of men, He Himself instituted the precise way it should be recalled." (Archbishop Fulton Sheen)

"The mystery of the divine redemption is primarily and by its very nature a mystery of love, that is, of the perfect love of Christ for His heavenly Father to Whom the sacrifice of the Cross, offered in a spirit of love and obedience, presents the most abundant and infinite satisfaction due for the sins of the human race; 'By suffering out of love and obedience, Christ gave more to God than was required to compensate for the offense of the whole human race.'" (Pope Pius XII, "Haurietis Aquas", 1956 A.D.)

"Now our Lord being truly the Savior wished not by saving Himself, but by saving His creatures, to be acknowledged the Savior. For neither is a physician by healing himself known to be physician, unless he also gives proof of his skill towards the sick. So the Lord being the Savior had no need of salvation, nor by descending from the cross did He wish to be acknowledged the Savior, but by dying. For truly a much greater salvation does the death of the Savior bring to men, than the descent from the cross." (St. Athanasius, Doctor of the Church)

"His love for us, as well as His submission to His Father, led Him to the great Sacrifice [of Calvary]. Observe, too, how He refuses to defend Himself before Pilate, who could so easily deliver Him from His enemies... Let us love and adore this divine silence, which works our salvation. Let us not pass over an iota of the devotedness which Jesus shows us - a devotedness which never could have existed save in the heart of a God. Oh! how much He has loved us, His children, the purchase of His Blood" (Dom Gueranger)

"Human suffering has reached its culmination in the Passion of Christ. And at the same time it has entered into a completely new dimension and a new order: it has been linked to love, to that love of which Christ spoke to Nicodemus, to that love which creates good, drawing it out by means of suffering, just as the supreme good of the Redemption of the world was drawn from the Cross of Christ, and from that Cross constantly takes its beginning. The Cross of Christ has become a source from which flow rivers of living water." (Pope John Paul II)

"O Jesus, most glorious in your magnificence: I praise and bless your incomprehensible omnipotence, weak and helpless for us in the Passion. I adore and glorify your unsearchable wisdom, accounted foolishness for us. I praise and magnify your unutterable love, which submitted to hatred of all people for the sake of your elect. I praise and extol your meek and gentle mercy, sentenced to so fearful a death for humankind. I praise and I adore your ravishing sweetness, embittered for us by your most bitter death. Amen." (St. Mechtilde)

"Earth had been cruel to Him; His feet wandered after lost sheep and we dug them with steel; His hands stretched out the Bread of everlasting life and we fastened them with nails; His lips spoke the Truth and we sealed them with dust. He came to give us Life and we took away His. But that was our fatal mistake. We really did not take it away. We only tried to take it away. He laid it down of Himself. Nowhere do the Evangelists say that He died. They say, 'He gave up the ghost.' It was a willing, self-determined relinquishment of life." (Archbishop Fulton Sheen)

"We were enemies of God through sin and God had appointed the sinner to die. It was necessary, then, that one of two things should happen: either that God, in His truth, should destroy all men, or that in His loving kindness He should blot out the sentence. But behold the wisdom of God: He preserved both the truth of His sentence, and the exercise of His loving kindness. Christ bore our sins in His body on the tree, so that by His death we might die to sin and live to righteousness." (St. Cyril of Jerusalem, Doctor of the Church, c. 350 A.D.)

"Jesus goes forth to them wearing the crown of thorns and the purple robe, not resplendent in kingly power, but laden with reproach; and the words are addressed to them, Behold the man! If you hate your king, spare him now when you see him sunk so low; he has been scourged, crowned with thorns, clothed with the garments of derision, jeered at with the bitterest insults, struck with the open hand; his ignominy is at the boiling point, let your ill-will sink to zero. But there is no such cooling on the part of the latter, but rather a further increase of heat and vehemence." (St. Augustine, Doctor of the Church)

"Besides these incomparable blessings, we have also received another of the highest importance; namely, that in the Passion alone we have the most illustrious example of the exercise of every virtue. For He so displayed patience, humility, exalted charity, meekness, obedience and unshaken firmness of soul, not only in suffering for justice' sake, but also in meeting death, that we may truly say on the day of His Passion alone, our Savior offered, in His own Person, a living exemplification of all the moral precepts inculcated during the entire time of His public ministry." (Catechism of the Council of Trent)

"The Lord having taken upon Him all the infirmities of our body, is then covered with the scarlet colored blood of all the martyrs, to whom is due the kingdom with Him; He is crowned with thorns, that is, with the sins of the Gentiles who once pierced Him, for there is a prick in thorns of which is woven the crown of victory for Christ. In the reed, He takes into His hand and supports the weakness and frailty of the Gentiles; and His head is smitten therewith that the weakness of the Gentiles sustained by Christ's hand may rest on God the Father, who is His head." (St. Hilary of Piotiers, Doctor of the Church)

"The sufferer's innocence does lessen numerically the pain of the suffering, since, when a guilty man suffers, he grieves not merely on account of the penalty, but also because of the crime, whereas the innocent man grieves only for the penalty: yet this pain is more intensified by reason of his innocence, in so far as he deems the hurt inflicted to be the more undeserved. Hence it is that even others are more deserving of blame if they do not compassionate him, according to Isaiah 57:1: 'The just perisheth, and no man layeth it to heart.'" (St. Thomas Aquinas, Doctor of the Church and "greatest theologian in the history of the Church")

"It is important then to consider, in what condition He ascends the cross; for I see Him naked. Let him then who prepares to overcome the world, so ascend that he seek not the appliances of the world. Now Adam was overcome who sought for a covering. He overcame who laid aside His covering. He ascends such as nature formed us, God being our Creator. Such as the first man had dwelt in paradise, such did the second man enter paradise. But about to ascend the cross rightly, did He lay aside His royal garments, that you may know that He suffered not as God, but as man, though Christ is both." (St. Ambrose, Doctor of the Church)

"What should we henceforth care if any one insults us, after Christ has thus suffered? The utmost that cruel outrage could do was put in practice against Christ; and not one member only, but His whole body suffered injuries; His head from the crown, the reed, and the buffetings; His face which was spit upon; His cheeks which they smote with the palms of their hands; His whole body from the scourging, the stripping to put on the cloak, and the mockery of homage; His hands from the reed which they put into them in mimicry of a scepter; as though they were afraid of omitting aught of indignity." (St. John Chrysostom, Doctor of the Church)

"The shameless doctrine of Marcion is refuted here. For if our Lord were not born according to the flesh, and had not a mother, why did He make such provision for her? Observe how imperturbable He is during His crucifixion, talking to the disciple of His mother, fulfilling prophecies, airing good hope to the thief; whereas before His crucifixion, He seemed in fear. The weakness of His nature was strewn there, the exceeding greatness of His power here. He teaches us too herein, not to turn back, because we may feel disturbed at the difficulties before us for when we are once actually under the trial, 'all will be; light and easy for us'." (St. John Chrysostom, Doctor of the Church)

"The Creator suffers for His creatures, the Master for His servant. He suffers by whom the Angels, men, the heavens, and the elements were made; in whom by whom, and of whom, are all things. It cannot, therefore, be a matter of surprise that while He agonized under such an accumulation of torments the whole frame of the universe convulsed; for as the Scriptures inform us, the earth quaked, and the rocks were rent, there was darkness over all the earth; and the sun was obscured. If, then, even mute and inanimate nature sympathized with the sufferings of her Creator, let the faithful consider with what tears they, the living stones of this edifice, should manifest their sorrow." (Catechism of the Council of Trent)

"That man should be delivered by Christ's Passion was in keeping with both His mercy and His justice. With His justice, because by His Passion Christ made satisfaction for the sins of the human race, and so man was set free by Christ's justice; and with His mercy, for since man of himself could not satisfy for the sin of all human nature, God gave him His Son to satisfy for him. And this came of a more copious mercy than if he had forgiven sins without satisfaction: Hence St. Paul says: 'God, who is rich in mercy, by reason of His very great love wherewith He has loved us even when we were dead by reason of our sins, brought us to life together with Christ." (St. Thomas Aquinas, Doctor of the Church and "greatest theologian in the history of the Church")

"Christ Jesus our Lord, as no man who is or has been or ever will be whose nature will not have been assumed in Him, so there is, has been, or will be no man, for whom He has not suffered - although not all will be saved by the mystery of His passion. But because all are not redeemed by the mystery of His passion, He does not regard the greatness and the fullness of the price, but He regards the part of the unfaithful ones and those not believing in faith those things which He has worked through love [Gal. 5:6], because the drink of human safety, which has been prepared by our infirmity and by divine strength, has indeed in itself that it may be beneficial to all; but if it is not drunk, it does not heal." (Council of Quiersy, 853 A.D.)

"When we meditate on the sufferings and all the torments of the Redeemer, nothing is better calculated to stir our souls than the thought that He endured them thus voluntarily. Were anyone to endure all kinds of suffering for our sake, not because he chose them but simply because he could not escape them, we should not consider this a very great favor; but were he to endure death freely, and for our sake only, having had it in his power to avoid it, this indeed would be a benefit so overwhelming as to deprive even the most grateful heart, not only the power of returning but even of feeling due thanks. We may hence form an idea of the transcendent and intense love of Jesus Christ towards us, and of His divine and boundless claims to our gratitude." (Catechism of the Council of Trent)

"And is not our Risen Jesus to exercise, from his throne in heaven, that sublime mediatorship for which he assumed our human nature? Is he not to be ever disarming the anger of his Father justly irritated by our sins? Is he not to make perpetual intercession for us, and obtain for mankind the graces necessary for salvation? Divine Justice must be satisfied; and what would become of poor sinners, were it not that the Man-God, by showing the precious Wounds on his Body, stays the thunderbolts of heaven, and makes mercy preponderate over judgement? O sacred Wounds! Thy handiwork of our sins, and now our protection! We shed bitter tears when we first beheld you on Calvary; but we now adore you as the five glories of our Emmanuel! Hail most precious Wounds! Our Hope and our defense!" (Dom Gueranger)

"Formerly, it was looked upon as an object of horror, but Jesus Christ has made it so worthy of respect and veneration, that kings and princes have forbidden the punishment of crucifixion to be continued, in order to do honor to those faithful servants, who gloried in a punishment which our Lord and Savior has so ennobled. And this wood to which the Jews had nailed our Lord, accompanied as it was by so many outrages and insults, has become so worthy of honor, that kings have imprinted it on their foreheads, and in union with the lowest of their subjects they look upon the cross of Jesus Christ as the ship which will guide and carry them safely into harbor. So strong sometimes are the storms of life that strength of arm is of no avail, and there is no other means to save us from shipwreck than trusting in the cross of Jesus Christ by which we are consecrated." (St. Augustine, Doctor of the Church)

"The Victim alone saves the soul from eternal ruin, the sacrificing of which presents to us in a mystical way the death of the Only-begotten, who - though He is now risen from the dead and dies no more, and death will no longer have dominion over Him, for He lives immortally and incorruptibly in Himself - is immolated for us again in this mystery of the sacred oblation. For His body is eaten there, His flesh is distributed among the people unto salvation, His blood is poured out, no longer in the hands of the faithless but in the mouth of the faithful. Let us take thought, therefore, of what this sacrifice means for us, which is an ever present re-presentation of the suffering of the Only begotten Son, for the sake of our forgiveness." (Pope St. Gregory I the Great, Doctor of the Church, 6th century A.D.)

"The events of Good Friday and, even before that, in prayer in Gethsemane, introduce a fundamental change into the whole course of the revelation of love and mercy in the messianic mission of Christ. The one who 'went about doing good and healing' and 'curing every sickness and disease' now Himself seems to merit the greatest mercy and to appeal for mercy, when He is arrested, abused, condemned, scourged, crowned with thorns, when He is nailed to the cross and dies amidst agonizing torments. It is then that He particularly deserves mercy from the people to whom He has done good, and He does not receive it. Even those who are closest to Him cannot protect Him and snatch Him from the hands of His oppressors. At this final stage of His messianic activity the words which the prophets, especially Isaiah, uttered concerning the Servant of Yahweh are fulfilled in Christ: 'Through his stripes we are healed.'" (Pope John Paul II)

"Christ grieved not only over the loss of His own bodily life, but also over the sins of all others. And this grief in Christ surpassed all grief of every contrite heart, both because it flowed from a greater wisdom and charity, by which the pang of contrition is intensified, and because He grieved at the one time for all sins, according to Isaiah 53:4: 'Surely He hath carried our sorrows.' But such was the dignity of Christ's life in the body, especially on account of the Godhead united with it, that its loss, even for one hour, would be a matter of greater grief than the loss of another man's life for howsoever long a time. Hence the Philosopher says (Ethica Nicomachea iii) that the man of virtue loves his life all the more in proportion as he knows it to be better; and yet he exposes it for virtue's sake. And in like fashion Christ laid down His most beloved life for the good of charity, according to Jeremiah 12:7: 'I have given My dear soul into the hands of her enemies.'" (St. Thomas Aquinas, Doctor of the Church and "greatest theologian in the history of the Church")

"The fact that He suffered death precisely on the wood of the cross must also be attributed to a particular council of God, which decreed that life should return by the way whence death had arisen. The serpent who had triumphed over our first parents by the wood (of a tree) was vanquished by Christ on the wood of the cross. Many other reasons which the Fathers have discussed in detail might be adduced to show that it was fit that our Redeemer should suffer death on the cross rather than in any other way. But, as the pastor will show, it is enough for the faithful to believe that this kind of death was chosen by the Savior because it appeared better adapted and more appropriate to the redemption of the human race; for there certainly could be none more ignominious and humiliating. Not only among the Gentiles was the punishment of the cross held accursed and full of shame and infamy, but even in the Law of Moses the man is called accursed that hangeth on a tree (Deut. xxi. 23, Gal. iii.13)." (Catechism of the Council of Trent)

"Then they prepared the title of guilt which was to be attached to the cross above the head of the Redeemer. Wooden tablets coated with plaster were used for this purpose, and for official notices there were always some on hand. The tablet had on it the name of the crime. In the case of Christ...[the] title read, 'Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews.' Now we have it in clear terms from the judge himself that Christ was not executed on account of a crime, but because He was Jesus, that is, the Redeemer, and because He was King in the realm of truth. Whether Pilate, in framing this title, purposely desired to vex the chief priests, cannot be stated with certainty. It suffices to remark that they felt and showed themselves offended and aggrieved... But Pilate, who towards the end had been so yielding, answered, 'What I have written, I have written'; from which words they could draw the conclusion, 'and thus shall it remain.' For an official document cannot well be changed; it might diminish the respect due authority. Thus, Pilate unwittingly gave testimony unto the truth." (Fr. Groenings)

"There were many messianic texts in the Old Testament which foreshadowed the sufferings of the future Anointed One of God. Among all these, particularly touching is the one which is commonly called the Fourth Song of the Suffering Servant, in the Book of Isaiah. The Prophet, who has rightly been called 'the Fifth Evangelist', presents in this Song an image of the sufferings of the Servant with a realism as acute as if he were seeing them with his own eyes: the eyes of the body and of the spirit. In the light of the verses of Isaiah, the Passion of Christ becomes almost more expressive and touching than in the descriptions of the Evangelists themselves. Behold, the true Man of Sorrows presents himself before us: 'He had no form or comeliness that we should look at him, and no beauty that we should desire him. He was despised and rejected by men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief; and as one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not. Surely he has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted. But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that made us whole, and with his stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all'. " (Pope John Paul II)

"He did endure every human suffering... First of all, on the part of men: for He endured something from Gentiles and from Jews; from men and from women, as is clear from the women servants who accused Peter. He suffered from the rulers, from their servants and from the mob, according to Psalm 2:1,2: 'Why have the Gentiles raged, and the people devised vain things? The kings of the earth stood up, and the princes met together, against the Lord and against His Christ.' He suffered from friends and acquaintances, as is manifest from Judas betraying and Peter denying Him... Christ suffered from friends abandoning Him; in His reputation, from the blasphemies hurled at Him; in His honor and glory, from the mockeries and the insults heaped upon Him; in things, for He was despoiled of His garments; in His soul, from sadness, weariness, and fear; in His body, from wounds and scourgings... In His head He suffered from the crown of piercing thorns; in His hands and feet, from the fastening of the nails; on His face from the blows and spittle; and from the lashes over His entire body. Moreover, He suffered in all His bodily senses: in touch, by being scourged and nailed; in taste, by being given vinegar and gall to drink; in smell, by being fastened to the gibbet in a place reeking with the stench of corpses, 'which is called Calvary'; in hearing, by being tormented with the cries of blasphemers and scorners; in sight, by beholding the tears of His Mother and of the disciple whom He loved." (St. Thomas Aquinas, Doctor of the Church and "greatest theologian in the history of the Church")

"[T]here was true and sensible pain in the suffering Christ, which is caused by something hurtful to the body: also, there was internal pain, which is caused from the apprehension of something hurtful, and this is termed sadness. And in Christ each of these was the greatest in this present life. This arose from four causes. First of all, from the sources of His pain. For the cause of the sensitive pain was the wounding of His body; and this wounding had its bitterness, both from the extent of the suffering...and from the kind of suffering, since the death of the crucified is most bitter, because they are pierced in nervous and highly sensitive parts - to wit, the hands and feet; moreover, the weight of the suspended body intensifies the agony. And besides this there is the duration of the suffering because they do not die at once like those slain by the sword. The cause of the interior pain was, first of all, all the sins of the human race, for which He made satisfaction by suffering; hence He ascribes them, so to speak, to Himself, saying (Psalm 22:1): 'The words of my sins.' Secondly, especially the fall of the Jews and of the others who sinned in His death chiefly of the apostles, who were scandalized at His Passion. Thirdly, the loss of His bodily life, which is naturally horrible to human nature. The magnitude of His suffering may be considered, secondly, from the susceptibility of the sufferer as to both soul and body. For His body was endowed with a most perfect constitution, since it was fashioned miraculously by the operation of the Holy Ghost; just as some other things made by miracles are better than others, as Chrysostom says (Hom. 22 in Joannis) respecting the wine into which Christ changed the water at the wedding-feast. And, consequently, Christ's sense of touch, the sensitiveness of which is the reason for our feeling pain, was most acute. His soul likewise, from its interior powers, apprehended most vehemently all the causes of sadness. Thirdly, the magnitude of Christ's suffering can be estimated from the singleness of His pain and sadness. In other sufferers the interior sadness is mitigated, and even the exterior suffering, from some consideration of reason, by some derivation or redundance from the higher powers into the lower; but it was not so with the suffering Christ, because 'He permitted each one of His powers to exercise its proper function,' as Damascene says (De Fide Orthodoxa iii). Fourthly, the magnitude of the pain of Christ's suffering can be reckoned by this, that the pain and sorrow were accepted voluntarily, to the end of men's deliverance from sin; and consequently He embraced the amount of pain proportionate to the magnitude of the fruit which resulted therefrom. From all these causes weighed together, it follows that Christ's pain was the very greatest." (St. Thomas Aquinas, Doctor of the Church and "greatest theologian in the history of the Church")

"Let no one, my brethren, blush at those sacred and adorable marks of our redemption. The cross of Jesus Christ is the source of every blessing; it is through that we live, through that, we are what we are. Let us carry the cross of Jesus, and adorn ourselves with so glorious a crown. It is the zeal and fulfillment of everything which appertains to our salvation. If we are regenerated in the waters of baptism, the cross is there present; if we approach the table of the Lord to receive His holy Body, it there appears; if we receive the imposition of hands to consecrate us as ministers of God, it is still there; in fact, we see in everything that adorable sign which is, at once, the cause and emblem of our victory. We have it in our houses, we hang it and paint it on our walls, we engrave it on our doors, and we should ever carry it in our hearts; for the cross is a sacred monument which recalls to memory the work of our salvation, the regaining of our ancient freedom, and the infinite mercy of Jesus Christ. When, then, you make the sign of the cross on the forehead, arm yourself with a saintly boldness, and reinstall your soul in its old liberty; for you are not ignorant that the cross is a prize beyond all price. Consider what is the price given for your ransom, and you will never more be slave to any man on earth. This reward and ransom is the cross. You should not, then, carelessly make the sign of the forehead, but you should impress it on your heart with the love of a fervent faith! Nothing impure will dare to molest you on seeing the weapon which overcometh all things. Be not, then, ashamed of the cross, in order that Jesus Christ be not ashamed of you, when He will come, clothed in the Majesty of His glory, accompanied by this sign of our redemption, which will then, shine more brilliant than the sun. Engrave it in your heart; lovingly embrace that which procured the salvation of our souls; for it is the cross which has saved and converted all the world is that which has banished heresy and unbelief, which has reestablished truth, which has made a heaven on earth, and which has transformed men into angels. It is by means of the cross that the devils have ceased to appear formidable, and are now only to be despised; it is through that, that death is now no longer death, but only a long sleep. In fine, it is through the cross that all our enemies have been conquered. If you find, then, any one who says, 'What! you worship the cross?' answer him with a tone of voice that betokens firmness, Yes, I do worship it, and shall never cease to do so. If he laugh at you, pity him, and shed tears for his blindness; and say boldly, We protest before heaven and earth that our glory is in the cross, that it is the source of all our blessings, our every hope, and that it is that which has crowned every saint." (St. John Chrysostom, Doctor of the Church)

Also See: Jesus Christ | Christ's Passion / Sufferings (Our Father's Love Reflections) | Original Sin | Sin | Salvation | Expiation | Justification | Lent | Resurrection | Sign of the Cross | The Cross / Crosses (Catholic Life Reflections) | God's Love & Crosses (Our Father's Love Reflections) | Holy Eucharist / Mass (Sacraments Section) | Sacraments Section | The Catholic Church | Mystical Body | Way of the Cross | Cross vs. Crucifix | The Trials & Sorrows of Jesus | Jesus' Last Words From the Cross | Christ's Passion (Topical Scripture)  

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