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The Crucifix

There is no Resurrection without the Crucifixion

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Most High, glorious God,
enlighten the darkness of my heart
and give me true faith, certain hope,
and perfect charity,
sense and knowledge,
Lord, that I may carry out
Your holy and true command.
Amen.
— St. Francis of Assisi -- Prayer Before the Crucifix

 

A crucifix is a cross that also has an image of Christ suffering on it. Every Catholic church has a Crucifix on, above, or near the main altar. Many Catholics may wear a small crucifix around their necks or place crucifixes in their homes. Some of our non-Catholic brothers and sisters may object to the idea of a crucifix, wondering why, if Christ died once and for all, do Catholics leave Jesus up on the Cross? Doesn't that take away from the power of the Resurrection? As Fr. David Dohogne explains, "Catholics also believe that our Lord is risen, but we also need to be reminded of what Christ had to endure before the Resurrection could take place, namely his Passion and Death on the cross. The crucifix helps us better understand and appreciate our "theology of redemption." It is a constant reminder of Christ's love for us. 

As St. Paul tells us in Galatians 2:19-21, that through the act of being crucified, Jesus did not die for nothing but died to save us.

19 For through the law I died to the law, that I might live for God. I have been crucified with Christ; 20 yet I live, no longer I, but Christ lives in me; insofar as I now live in the flesh, I live by faith in the Son of God who has loved me and given himself up for me. 21 I do not nullify the grace of God; for if justification comes through the law, then Christ died for nothing.

The symbol of the Crucifix within our homes or around our necks helps us to remember this ultimate act of love everyday.