Deuteronomy 30:15-20
Luke 9:22-25


Reflecting on the Cross and the Holy Cross, someone may wonder if anything is different. Based on the terms, the difference is an extra word ‘holy.’ This word can be understood as belonging to God rather than devotion or religious practices.

In the Gospel, Jesus foretells the Passion of the Son of Man with grievous suffering, being rejected and put to death. However, he is destined to be raised on the third day. It can be imagined with the beginning of a dark painting and then putting a rising light on it. Jesus does not deny the suffering but acknowledges it and gives hope.

In terms of the cross, suffering is a part of it because it is a tool of the death penalty. Then, the cross becomes a Holy Cross when the Son of Man is handed. The Holy Cross is a sign of love and hope for everybody, especially those facing difficulties and challenges.

With this background, Jesus’ followers can understand Jesus’ invitation to his disciples. Jesus does not force but invites anyone who wants to follow him. Jesus’s followers renounced themselves after the willingness to follow him, took up their cross every day, and followed him. These trifold actions became easier with acknowledging Jesus’s presence in their lives. The cross turns into the Holy Cross because Jesus accompanies them every day of their lives.

I wonder if we want to acknowledge the presence of God and be willing to walk with Jesus in this Lenten season.

JD Tân T CP is a Vietnamese Passionist who lives and studies further at the Holy Cross Retreat, Templestowe.