The Sign of the Cross

Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross
Wednesday, September 14, 2022

Today’s Readings

https://bible.usccb.org/bible/readings/091422.cfm

Today, in God’s Lavish Mercy, on this Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, our readings include the sublime Philippians Canticle.

To me, this is the most beautiful passage in the Bible – so beautiful that nothing else needs to be said about it.

As we read this canticle lovingly and prayerfully today, may we take all the suffering of the world to Christ’s outstretched arms – even our own small or large heartaches and longings.


Poetry: Jessica Powers – The Sign of the Cross

The lovers of Christ lift out their hands 
to the great gift of suffering. 
For how could they seek to be warmed and clothed 
and delicately fed, 
to wallow in praise and to drink deep draughts 
of an undeserved affection,
have castle for home and a silken couch for bed, 
when He the worthy went forth, wounded and hated, 
and grudged of even a place to lay His head?
This is the badge of the friends of the Man of Sorrows: 
the mark of the cross, faint replica of His, 
become ubiquitous now; it spreads like a wild blossom 
on the mountains of time and in each of the crevices. 
Oh, seek that land where it grows in a rich abundance 
with its thorny stem and its scent like bitter wine, 
for wherever Christ walks He casts its seed
and He scatters its purple petals. 

It is the flower of His marked elect, 
and the fruit it bears is divine. 
Choose it, my heart. It is a beautiful sign.

Music: Philippians Canticle ~ John Michael Talbot

And if there be therefore any consolation
And if there be therefore any comfort in his love
And if there be therefore any fellowship in spirit
If any tender mercies and compassion

We will fulfill His joy
And we will be like-minded
We will fulfill His joy
We can dwell in one accord
And nothing will be done
Through striving or vainglory
We will esteem all others better than ourselves

This is the mind of Jesus
This is the mind of Our Lord
And if we follow Him
Then we must be like-minded
In all humility
We will offer up our love

Though in the form of God
He required no reputation
Though in the form of God
He required nothing but to serve
And in the form of God
He required only to be human
And worthy to receive
Required only to give

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