Today we marked Holy Cross day.
The cross on which our Lord was crucified has become the universal symbol for Christianity, replacing the fish symbol of the early Church. After the end of the persecution era, early in the fourth century, pilgrims began to travel to Jerusalem to visit and pray at the places associated with the life of Jesus. Helena, the mother of the emperor Constantine the Great, was a Christian and, whilst overseeing excavations in the city, is said to have uncovered a cross, which many believed to be the Cross of Christ. A basilica was built on the site of the Holy Sepulchre and dedicated on the 14th September 335. Regardless of whether you yourself believe that Christ’s cross was discovered that day, the 14th of September has remained a day for the church to remember that through pain came glory, through death comes resurrection – and maybe for these times more than ever – that through a selfless act many can find hope.
Below are the intercessions from the service
Christ of the Cross, be with those this day who suffer, those who suffer in body, in mind or in spirit, those whose suffering is long, those whose suffering is new. May they know your comfort and your peace. Christ of the Cross, be with those in authority who make decisions which affect the lives of others, for good and bad. Grant them the grace to seek the common good, regardless of what the loudest or nearest voices may be shouting. Christ of the Cross, as you were there in the creation of the world, from the forests of wood on the mountainside, to the forest of kelp in the depth of the sea, creation is blessed by you. Help us to be more aware of what we can and should do to protect the world, the land and sea, air and all creatures. Help us in the choices we make in our food, our leisure, and our daily lives. As Forrest burn, drought threatens, and sea levels rise; make us willing to sacrifice the luxuries we have come to take for granted today, so that the world may heal and be fruitful for the generations to come. Christ of the Cross, be with the Church your body in the world, a body which while it celebrates the glory of your resurrection, also bears the wounds of the cross. Help us to heal, to forgive and be forgiven, and to be vehicles of your healing love. Be with all Kevin our bishop, all those who lead in Christians communities, and Christians everywhere. May humility, faithfulness and service may mark all our words and actions as we pray together the prayer you taught us: Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us. Do not bring us to the time of trial but deliver us from evil. Amen.