The Crucifix

I was in a Catholic Church in Folsom CA. On the wall above the Altar was a cross with the risen Christ. Why did this crush me? Why did I feel that this was wrong? Sinful feeling? Or from God?

Someone asks you
Why is the Crucifix as a symbol of faith so important to you Catholics? Why not the empty cross?
What words would you use to explain this?

In Christ

Dear One,

The crucifix is important to me as a Catholic, because I need to be reminded to be crucified every day. I need to become more detached from worldly things that are unnecessary, and more pondering of the Passion of Our Lord Jesus Christ. In so doing, I have more compassion for Him, and out of that more compassion for others.

Some Catholic churches have a cross with the risen Christ on it,…but somewhere else in the church it is mandated that there be a crucifix.

I hope others will add their insights also!

Sometimes it is better to answer a question with a question…

For instance, if asked why do Catholic Churches have a crucifix instead of an empty cross, ask why is an empty cross more appropriate?

The answer, most common from an evangelical or fundamentalist Protestant will be, “because Christ is no longer on the cross”.

The point can be made by asking if Nativity scenes with the baby Jesus are appropriate displays around Christmas. The resounding answer will be YES.

Follow up by asking, why not an empty manger, after all, Jesus is no longer a baby!

That usually makes the point!

Good point. :thumbsup:

Second that!

Because it was Christ’s crufixion that redeemed us.

“When we journey without the cross, when we build without the cross, and when we confess a Christ without the cross, we are not disciples of the Lord: we are worldly . . . I would like for us all, after these days of grace, to have courage, precisely the courage, to walk in the presence of the Lord’s presence . . . to build the Church upon the blood of the Lord, which is poured out on the cross; and to confess the only glory there is: Christ crucified.” - Pope Francis

That is excellent! Thank you for pointing out what our Pope Francis said!

The suffering of Jesus is the proof of his love. “What greater love does a man have than that he lay down his life for his friends.”

May God bless and keep you. May God’s face shine on you. May God be kind to you and give you peace.

Thanks for that

Its where I am in my own spiritual journey. Being raised by my grandmother my first contact with religion was Mormon. That was fine as I was led to the Catholic Church many years later. While in Utah I found the Cross to be the most important conversations I ever had. Speaking about the Crucifix even better. I know what it is to take this great symbol out of ones faith life and try to place more focus on the resurrection. This is why my heart was crushed in that Catholic Church I attended with the resurrected Christ above the Alter. With the smaller Crucifix present. Its not that I do not focus on the resurrection, its just that I can’t go there without the Crucifix being front and center in Church, in my daily life, in my soul. Once our great ship with our Lord and Master at the helm depicted on the Cross gets replaced with the Resurrected Christ we will begin loose our way. Its the path that leads first through the protestant sea’s and finds its way to the Mormon Church. We become wordy, trying to shape this life the way we think it should be, making heaven what we want it to be. Christ’s blood drys up and so do we. We have to confess Christ Crucified not Christ Resurrected less we loose ourselves in what only appears to be joy and happiness. Our reality as Catholics is suffering into final joy. And we ain’t there yet. Lets not open the Christmas presents up 2 weeks before Christmas. Lets anticipate the resurrection at the foot of the Crucifix. It is the only way we will ever learn how to embrace true love. And that is what gets us to heaven.

St. Paul writes, “I preach Jesus Christ and Him crucified.”

The Crucifix, for me, reminds me that He died for my sins, that He loved me that much, and that my sin, everyone, is like a nail in His Wounds on the Cross, my sins a million crosses that He physically carried.

Although I like the symbol of the Cross at times, much like other faiths, it seems empty without Him…the Crucifix reminds me of the fullness of the faith that the Catholic Church is blessed with.

On Good Friday we venerate the cross with a kiss.

I have always had a problem with that because I know it also represents the cross **I **must accept as part of my following Jesus.

The crucifix reminds me that it is not all pie in the sky. Following Jesus requires tough mindedness, courage, fortitude, pretty much every virtue we care to name.

Blessed be that cross.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.