Friday, April 2, 2010

Lenten Stational Church in Rome

Good Friday
S. Croce in Gerusalemme
(Basilica of the Holy Cross in Jerusalem)

One of the seven Pilgrim Churches of Rome, the Basilica of the Holy Cross was built in the fourth century specifically to house the relics of the Passion discovered by St. Helen in the holy land.  When it was first constructed, the floor of the church was literally covered with soil from Jerusalem -- thus the title which refers to the fact that the church of the Holy Cross was "in" Jerusalem.

Enshrined for devotion within the Basilica of the Holy Cross in Jerusalem are: a part of the panel which was hung on Christ's Cross; two thorns of the crown; an incomplete nail and three small wooden pieces of the True Cross itself; a large fragment of the Good Thief's cross; the bone of an index finger, said to be the finger that St. Thomas placed in thewounds of the Risen Christ; a single reliquary containing small pieces of: the Scourging Pillar (the larger part which is in the Church of St. Praxedes), the Holy Sepulchre (Christ's tomb), and the crib of Jesus, as well as some fragments of the grotto of Bethlehem.

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