March 30, 2007

Letters to the Editor

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Holy Week is a fitting time to reflect on the saints’ adoration of the cross

The Catholic world treasures the crucifix. Why? Because the Passion of Christ is the central core of Catholic spirituality.

A survey of some of the saints illustrates this. I think it’s important to reflect on these words, especially during Holy Week, when we remember the Passion of our Lord.

I compiled reflections of great saints from Magnificat and recently shared them with the Men’s Club at St. Christopher Parish in Indianapolis. I wanted to also share some of them with readers of The Criterion because I think it’s a most fitting time to reflect on the saints’ adoration of the cross and Christ’s sacrifice during these last few days of Lent:

  • In first Corinthians, St. Paul states, “I resolved that while I was with you I would think of nothing but Jesus Christ and him crucified.” This is repeated over and over in the saints down through the years.
  • St. Jerome said, “The cross of Christ is the key of paradise.”
  • St. Bonaventure: “He withstood all these sufferings in order to set you aflame with love for him.”
  • St. Francis de Sales: “The crucifix is the true book of the Christian.”
  • St. Bede: “First, close your eyes and bar the doors of your senses. Enter wholly within yourself, and fix your gaze on the wounded Jesus, and upon him alone. Strive with all your power … that you may attain to the knowledge of his divinity through the wounds of his sacred humanity.”
  • Blessed Joseph Freinademetz: “There is one path that everyone who wishes to become holy must follow: meditation on the bitter Passion and death of the Lord Jesus.”
  • St. Paul of the Cross: “Listen to what the thorns say, the nails, the wounds, the divine blood. Oh, what a sermon!”
  • Blessed John XXII: “When I have committed some sin or feel distressed, I imagine myself kneeling at the foot of the cross, like Mary Magdalene, and receiving on my head the shower of blood and water which flowed from the Savior’s wounded heart.”
  • St. Francis de Sales: “Mount Calvary is the mount of lovers. All love that takes not its beginning from our Savior’s Passion is frivolous and dangerous.”

- Thomas Lamb, Speedway

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