Today, Christians celebrate the Exaltation of The Holy Cross, remembering the day that St. Helena, mother of the Roman Emperor Constantine, found the cross where Jesus was crucified.
Early in the fourth century, St. Helena went to Jerusalem in search of the holy places of Christ’s life. In her quest, she found three crosses, which is believed to be miraculous. According to legends, the one on which Jesus died was identified when its touch healed a dying woman. (Read: Celebrate St. Helena’s Feast Day With These 3 Basil Dishes)
The cross immediately became an object of veneration. To this day, the Eastern Churches, Catholic and Orthodox alike, celebrate the Exaltation of the Holy Cross every September. Here’s a prayer to honor this memorable day.
The Holy Cross Prayer
Oh Lord Almighty! You have suffered death at the cross for our sins.
Oh Holy Cross of Jesus! be my true light. Oh Holy Cross of Jesus! fill my soul with good thoughts.
Oh Holy Cross! help me in my salvation.
Oh Holy Cross! safeguard me against unholy thoughts and worldly dangers that I may worship the Holy Cross of Jesus of Nazareth crucified.
Have pity on me. Oh Holy Cross of Jesus! be my hope. Oh Holy Cross have mercy on me forever and ever.
In honor of the Precious Blood of Jesus and His fearful Death and Resurrection and His Glorification which leads to everlasting life.
As true as Jesus is born on Christmas and crucified on Good Friday. As true as St. Joseph and Nicodemus took Jesus down from the cross.
As true as Jesus ascended into heaven. May He preserve me from my enemies both visible and invisible forever and ever.
Lord Almighty, into Your hands I give my soul and my body.
Oh Lord Jesus! grant me strength to bear the cross as Yourself.
Teach me to bear it with great humility that the Blessed Virgin may fill me with the Holy Spirit. Preserve my soul and lead it to life everlasting.