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  #1  
Old Aug 24, '08, 5:23 pm
ahannah ahannah is offline
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Default 3 Crosses?

Can someone tell me the origin, purpose, or meaning behind the 3 crosses that we Catholics trace on ourselves just before the Gospel reading? (It happens right around the time we say, "Glory to You, Lord.")
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  #2  
Old Aug 24, '08, 5:27 pm
bilop bilop is offline
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Default Re: 3 Crosses?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ahannah View Post
Can someone tell me the origin, purpose, or meaning behind the 3 crosses that we Catholics trace on ourselves just before the Gospel reading? (It happens right around the time we say, "Glory to You, Lord.")
Basically it means, "May the words of the Gospel be in my mind, on my lips, and in my heart".

God Bless
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  #3  
Old Aug 24, '08, 7:01 pm
agnostic agnostic is offline
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Default Re: 3 Crosses?

What's the difference between a cross and a crucifix? Is one more catholic than the other, or should catholics only wear one or the other?
And why do some catholics actually wear them
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  #4  
Old Aug 24, '08, 7:07 pm
bilop bilop is offline
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Default Re: 3 Crosses?

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Originally Posted by agnostic View Post
What's the difference between a cross and a crucifix? Is one more catholic than the other, or should catholics only wear one or the other?
And why do some catholics actually wear them
In this case the OP is asking about people crossing themselves (in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit). Prior to the Gospel reading, Catholics make the sign of the cross on their forehead, lips, and heart.

In terms of physical articles, a cross is just a plain cross, a crucifx has the body of Christ crucified (the Corpus) depicted on the cross.

Catholics tend to favor the crucifix, Protestants the plain cross. The devotion to the crucifix dates to St. Francis of Assissi in the 12th century. The idea is that we focus on Christ's suffering and death for us, making us repent our sins all the more, when we realize the immense pain he voluntarily choose so that we might be saved.

A Catholic Church is required to have a crucifix in the sanctuary during Mass, and most have a large crucifix or paintaing of the crucifixion always on display.

Hope that helps, God Bless
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  #5  
Old Aug 24, '08, 7:09 pm
agnostic agnostic is offline
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Default Re: 3 Crosses?

Quote:
Originally Posted by bilop View Post
In this case the OP is asking about people crossing themselves (in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit). Prior to the Gospel reading, Catholics make the sign of the cross on their forehead, lips, and heart.

In terms of physical articles, a cross is just a plain cross, a crucifx has the body of Christ crucified (the Corpus) depicted on the cross.

Catholics tend to favor the crucifix, Protestants the plain cross. The devotion to the crucifix dates to St. Francis of Assissi in the 12th century. The idea is that we focus on Christ's suffering and death for us, making us repent our sins all the more, when we realize the immense pain he voluntarily choose so that we might be saved.

A Catholic Church is required to have a crucifix in the sanctuary during Mass, and most have a large crucifix or paintaing of the crucifixion always on display.

Hope that helps, God Bless
Sure does - snappy and to the point. Thank you
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  #6  
Old Aug 24, '08, 7:14 pm
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Default Re: 3 Crosses?

Quote:
Originally Posted by agnostic View Post
What's the difference between a cross and a crucifix? Is one more catholic than the other, or should catholics only wear one or the other?
And why do some catholics actually wear them
Off topic - but a crucifix is a cross that actually has the body of the crucified Christ ("corpus") on it. A cross is simply the shape, without the corpus.

I do tend to think a crucifix is more Christian (not Catholic) than a cross. After all, a cross on its own could really be the cross of any person who was crucified, and the Romans in their time crucified many thousands at least. It could be the cross of the slave Spartacus, or the cross of one of the two who were crucified along with Christ, for example.

Having the corpus on it reminds us that there was one in particular whose crucifixion was important salvation-wise. As for why we wear it - it's a symbol and reminder of our faith, of course. Just as Jews wear a star of David, Hindus a bindhi (the spot or marking on their foreheads), or wiccans might wear a pentacle (five pointed star).
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  #7  
Old Aug 24, '08, 8:46 pm
ahannah ahannah is offline
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Default Re: 3 Crosses?

Thank you Bilop! Good to know! Thank you for your response.
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Sanctus, sanctus, sanctus Dominus Deus sabbaoth.
Pleni sunt coeli et terra gloria tua.
Hosanna in excelsis.
Benedictus qui venit in nomine domini.
Hosanna in excelsis.
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  #8  
Old Aug 25, '08, 5:27 pm
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Default Re: 3 Crosses?

Quote:
Originally Posted by bilop View Post
Basically it means, "May the words of the Gospel be in my mind, on my lips, and in my heart".

God Bless
On a similar note: what is the ORDER that's supposed to happen?

When I was a child, I don't recall any one telling me to cross myself (in any manner) before the reading of the Gospel. Fast forward to adulthood, and there are people crossing themselves.

I had an older woman tell me it was for 'Open my mind, close my mouth, and fill my heart', which I found to be quite sweet. Later, I learn it's what's is posted above.

But.... the order of things.

The Priest/Deacon says "a reading from the book of...." and crosses himself. Then we respond, 'Glory to you, Oh Lord', and then WE cross ourselves.....

... but in these days of poorly catechised Catholics, I see folx that are SAYING our response, WHILE they are crossing themselves - which to me is another prayer.

I don't get it, and I really don't know how to point this out to others without becoming just a 'Catholic Nazi'
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  #9  
Old Aug 25, '08, 5:34 pm
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Default Re: 3 Crosses?

Bishop Sheen remarked that Christ without His cross is a man without a mission, and a cross without Christ is a burden without a Reliever.

Bishop Sheen, pray for us!
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  #10  
Old Aug 25, '08, 5:44 pm
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LilyM LilyM is offline
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Default Re: 3 Crosses?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Apryl View Post

I had an older woman tell me it was for 'Open my mind, close my mouth, and fill my heart', which I found to be quite sweet. Later, I learn it's what's is posted above.
Sweet indeed, and appropriate for me

Quote:
The Priest/Deacon says "a reading from the book of...." and crosses himself. Then we respond, 'Glory to you, Oh Lord', and then WE cross ourselves.....

... but in these days of poorly catechised Catholics, I see folx that are SAYING our response, WHILE they are crossing themselves - which to me is another prayer.

I don't get it, and I really don't know how to point this out to others without becoming just a 'Catholic Nazi'
The confusion is understandable. I'm not sure what the rubrics say, but I believe we are, as you say, supposed to cross ourselves AFTER the 'Glory to you O Lord'.

However, priests often begin the Gospel immediately after, and so don't allow enough time for parishioners to do this. As they sometimes rush other parts of the Mass as well - for example having EMHCs come up during the Lamb of God because they don't want to wait for them to come up after its completion.

Sometimes there are valid reasons for this - priests are often busy and may have to say Mass in several parishes that are geographically spread out, so even small delays can be disruptive to them.

I don't necessarily think it's poor catechesis, rather that parishioners simply don't want to miss the first verse or verses of the Gospel.
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  #11  
Old Aug 25, '08, 8:16 pm
SenorSalsa SenorSalsa is offline
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Default Re: 3 Crosses?

If you do the crossing reverently and slowly, both prayers fit in quite nicely. The second, silent "May the Lord..." usually starts about the time I get to my mouth, said smoothly and unhurriedly
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  #12  
Old Aug 26, '08, 11:40 am
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Default Re: 3 Crosses?

Quote:
Originally Posted by LilyM View Post
The confusion is understandable. I'm not sure what the rubrics say, but I believe we are, as you say, supposed to cross ourselves AFTER the 'Glory to you O Lord'.
I did look it up in the GIRM - one of the reasons why I bought a copy, and it doesn't STATE the chronology of events explicitly enough for me to say to some one 'See! It's right there! I'm not making this up!' - and without that, I don't have a leg to stand on.

Quote:
Originally Posted by LilyM View Post
However, priests often begin the Gospel immediately after, and so don't allow enough time for parishioners to do this. As they sometimes rush other parts of the Mass as well - for example having EMHCs come up during the Lamb of God because they don't want to wait for them to come up after its completion.

Sometimes there are valid reasons for this - priests are often busy and may have to say Mass in several parishes that are geographically spread out, so even small delays can be disruptive to them.

I don't necessarily think it's poor catechesis, rather that parishioners simply don't want to miss the first verse or verses of the Gospel.
Aaaauuuggghhhh!!!!!!!!!!!! I wish there was some way to educate priests, who have studied for years (in seminary, and then after) and they are running their parishes, and MOST of the people are ok with this.... but that rushing stuff is not kewl! I feel like someone that's eating their salad, when the waiter asks, 'What would you like for dessert?'. Or worse, you are eating your salad, and they put chocolate syrup on the salad because that's supposed to go WITH the dessert.

I understand your point, but I feel so much better knowing that you understand mine.

I guess I'll just have to hope and pray that we can get the priests, and the parishes, to slow down and savor the mass!
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  #13  
Old Aug 26, '08, 11:42 am
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Default Re: 3 Crosses?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SenorSalsa View Post
If you do the crossing reverently and slowly, both prayers fit in quite nicely. The second, silent "May the Lord..." usually starts about the time I get to my mouth, said smoothly and unhurriedly
Aaahhhh... but when do you START crossing yourself?

If it's while the Priest/Deacon is still praying, aren't you still rushing?

I just want to do it right, not be a distraction to others, and help us all to get something out of the Gospel.
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  #14  
Old Aug 26, '08, 12:11 pm
Father JohnBerg Father JohnBerg is offline
 
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Default Re: 3 Crosses?

It means that we want the Lord to, so to speak, 'moniter' what comes forth from our Lips, what we think in our head, and what we feel in our heart.
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  #15  
Old Aug 26, '08, 12:47 pm
adstrinity adstrinity is offline
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Default Re: 3 Crosses?

That we may KNOW the Gospel.
That we may SPEAK the Gospel.
That we may LOVE the Gospel.
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