The VerbumQUO (may3quo.htm)

WEDNESDAY
May 3, 2006
vol 17, no. 110

By this sign we will conquer


The VerbumQUO for today on the Feast of the Finding of the Holy Cross is, appropriately, "Crucis" which is the Latin noun for "Cross" and the focal point of our lives for which we venerate and carry with us daily. As Christ showed that there can be no Resurrection without the Cross, there can be no Victory without the Cross for us. We must be willing to take up our cross and follow Him daily. Only then can we be assured of sharing in the triumph.

by
Michael Cain
Editor, The Daily Catholic

      Editor's Note: We resume this reflective series which highlights one word from the Proper of the day's Mass. Taking the Latin Verbum and Quotidianum, which mean respectively "Word" and "Daily", we have coined the word "Verbumquo" by contracting quotidianum to quo and running it together as VerbumQUO for this feature series, thus "The Daily Word," as in the sum of the message, the 'quotient', if you will. It is also our hope that in choosing the Latin word with its meaning and etymology more will be attuned to hearing the word read at the altar and better comprehend the beauty of the Mother tongue. Hopefully in this glorious time of Pascaltide we can gain a higher appreciation and contemplation on how the Daily Proper of the Holy Mass applies in our lives in alignment with the will of Christ and His Blessed Immaculate Mother and His Mystical Bride, His Holy Roman Catholic Church.


    The VerbumQUO for today - the feast of the Finding of the Holy Cross by Saint Helena - is, appropriately, "Crucis" which is the Latin possessive noun for "of the Cross" taken from today's Introit, Collect, Epistle and Communion for today's Proper of the Mass Nos autem. One of the highlights of the year is on Good Friday when many traditional Catholic communities have the great opportunity to participate in the adoration of the Cross, particularly kissing a reliquarium containing a sliver of the True Cross. Thank you, St. Helena, for being the "Indiana Jones" of your era in seeking the treasure of the wood (lignum on which was shed the Most Precious Blood of the God-Man.

    We first see the word Cruce referring to "in the Cross" used in the opening Introit for today's Mass from Galatians 6: 14 in which the Apostle Saint Paul says:
Nos autem gloriári opórtet in Cruce Dómini nostri Jesu Christi in quo est salus, vita, et resurréctio nostra per quem salváti, et liberáti sumus, allelúja, allelúja.
It behooves us to glory in the Cross of our Lord Jesus Christ: in Whom is our salvation, life, and resurrection: by Whom we are saved and delivered, alleluia, alleluia.

    We see the word Crucis from here on in as "of the Cross" employed in the Collect for today's Mass:
Deus, qui in præclára salutíferæ Crucis Inventione, passiónis tunc mirá cula suscitásti: concéde; ut vitális ligni prétio, ætérnæ vita; suffrágia consequémur:
God, Who, in the glorious finding of the Cross of our salvation, didst renew the miracles of Thy passion, grant that, by the price of that lifegiving wood, we may obtain the privilege of eternal life.

    In today's Epistle, Paul references the Cross in describing the price Jesus paid, becoming obedient even to the death of the Cross. We see these powerful words in Philippians 2: 5-11:
Fratres: Hoc enim sentíte in vobis, quod et in Christo Jesu: qui cum in forma Dei esset, non rapínam arbitrátus est esse se æquálem Deo: sed semetípsum exinanívit formam servi accípiens, in similitúdinem hóminum factus, et hábitu invéntus ut homo. Humiliávit semetípsum, factus obédiens usque ad mortem, mortem autem Crucis. Propter quod et Deus exaltávit illum: et donávit illi nomen, quod est super omne nomen: (hic genuflectitur) ut in nómine Jesu omne genu flectátur coeléstium, terréstrium, et infernórum: et omnis lingua confiteátur, quia Dóminus Jesus Christus in glória est Dei Patris.
Brethren, Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus; who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God; but made Himself as nothing, taking the form of a servant, being made in the likeness of men, and in habit found as a man. He humbled Himself, becoming obedient unto death, even the death of the Cross. For which cause God also hath exalted Him, and hath given Him a name which is above all names: (Here all kneel down) that in the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those that are in Heaven, on earth, and under the earth; and that every tongue should confess that the Lord Jesus Christ is in the glory of God the Father.

    And in today's Secret, though we don't hear the words, we read in our missals the following:
Sacrifícium, Dómine, quod tibi immolámus placatus inténde: ut ab omni nos éruat bellórum nequítia, et per vexillum sanctæ Crucis Fílii tui, ad conteréndas potestátis advérsæ insídias, nos in tunc protectiónis securitáte constítuat.
Look with favor, O Lord, upon the sacrifice which we immolate to Thee, that it may preserve us from the horrors of war and, through the banner of the holy Cross of Thy Son, may establish us in the security of Thy protection, to trample under foot the snares of the enemy's power.

    In the Communion we find the words that signal our everlasting hope and encouragement:
Per signum Crucis de inimícis nostris líbera nos, Deus noster, allelúja.
By the sign of the Cross, deliver us from our enemies, O Thou our God, alleluia.

    Finally, in the Postcommunion we hear the words of refreshment in the sweet wood of the Cross:
Repléti alimónia coelésti, et spiritáli póculo recreáti, quæsumus, omnípotens Deus: ut ab hoste malígno deféndas, quos per lignum sanctæ Crucis Fílii tui, arma justítiæ pro salúte mundi, triumpháre jussísti.
Filled with heavenly food, and refreshed with the spiritual cup, we beseech Thee, O almighty God, that Thou defend us from the. malice of the enemy, as Thou hast bidden us triumph by the wood of the holy Cross, the armor of justice for the salvation of the world.
The pronunciation of today's VerbumQUO is simply CREW-CHIS. It is derived from the Latin singular nominative crux with crucis being the possessive singular case in the Latin genitive. Now let's look at Webster's definition and the etimology of the word. Note there are several definitions and we are going to focus only on those which are applicable to the the only Cross that counts:

    "Cross", noun [From Latin noun crux which in French is crois and in Anglo Saxon cros; hence: cross. 1. A structure, typically an upright vertical beam supporting a horizontal beam, anciently used in the execution of malefactors; specifically (usually capitalized), with the, that on which Jesus Christ was crucified. 2. a A device or emblem shaped like this structure. b A monument or other structure in the form of a cross, or surmounted by a cross. 3. A cruciform badge, ornament, etc. as a standard surmounted by a crucifix carried in religious processions. 4. The crusader's symbol; hence, to take the cross, to take the crusader's vows. 5. A representation of the cross as the symbol of Christ's death; hence, the chosen symbol of Christianity; also the Christian religion, or, specifically, the gospel of redemption through the death of Christ."

    "Crux", noun from Latin Cruces, root form: crux, cross, torture. 1. A cross, as in heraldry; specifically (cap. gen. CRUCIS. 2. Anything very puzzling or difficult to explain. 3. A crucial or critical point."

    From these definitions the last definition "a crucial or critical point" is most appropriate for the Cross is crucial to salvation. For 2000 years the Cross has stood as the symbol of redemption and countless souls have been bathed in the graces of the Cross of Christ. Thanks to the Empress Saint Helena, the Most Precious Blood-saturated wood was excavated in the fourth century and shared with the world much to satan's dismay. He had relished the Crucifixion, only to be defeated at the Resurrection. The more he could effect the concealment of the True Cross, the more he thought he could wipe the memory of Christ from hearts and souls, but Helena's discovery only reminded him of his bitter defeat. Resolved with revenge, the fallen angel and his legions have vowed to erase the Cross from civilization's conscience and it has taken two millenia to do so, but if one looks around today, sees the contention in the courts, the hypocrisy of nations, and the demonic tolerance of diversity which seeks out one to be offended by the grace of God that all others suffer, one might think the evil one has finally conquered. But we all know that is a charade and that only One can conquer for He already has with the Victory of the Cross. The noted Benedictine Abbot Dom Prosper Gueranger, in his masterful 15-volumed The Liturgical Year, expresses:

        "Never had Satan's pride met with such humiliation as when he saw the instrument of our perdition made the instrument of our salvation. As the Church expresses it in her Preface for Passiontide: 'He that overcame mankind by a Tree, was overcome by a Tree.' Thus foiled, he vented his fury upon this saving Wood, which so bitterly reminded him both of the irresistible power of his conqueror and of the dignity of man who had been redeemed at so great a price. He would fain have annihilated the Cross; but knowing that this was beyond his power, he endeavored to profane it, and hide it from view. He therefore instigated the Jews to bury it. At the foot of Calvary, not far from the sepulchre, was a deep hole. Into this was the Cross thrown, together with those of the two thieves, the Nails, the Crown of Thorns, and the Inscription or Title written by Pilate. The hole was then filled up with rubbish and earth, and the Sanhedrin exulted in the thought of its having effaced the memory of the Nazarene, Who could not save Himself from the ignominious death of the Cross. Forty years after this, Jerusalem was destroyed by the Romans, the instruments of God's vengeance. The Holy Places were desecrated by idolaters. A small temple to Venus was erected on Calvary, and another to Jupiter over the Holy Sepulchre. By this, the pagans intended derision; whereas, they were perpetuating the knowledge of two spots of most sacred interest."

    Interesting that the Abbot pointed out "instruments of God's vengeance." Could that very same scenario be played out today when God's permitting Will is that He is allowing the curse of the Muslim Crescent moon to eclipse Christendom because of man's lukewarmness and veering from the Faith Christ established? Should the United States, which progressively is allowing the denial of the Cross and promoting perversity from the senseless murder of over 50 million in the womb to obscenities of the most vile kind to elevating sodomy to a place of acceptance, be spared such punishment? Though it is not God's ordaining Will that men deny Him and seek the comforts falsely afforded by the heresy of Modernism, it is His permitting Will that that which so greatly offends Him - from the immoral and amoral society to a shepherdless church which seeks to revise the Truths and Traditions to justify their exodus from the True Faith - be punished so that the few faithful will remain for it is quality, not quantity that the Almighty counts most vital. The facts are that Christ died for everyone, but, as He said at the institution of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass and as has been set in stone for all time, "pro multis" - "for many" - NOT "for all"!!! This means that whereas it is the ordaining Will of God that all men be saved, it is His permitting Will that allows for the fact that only a few out of the several will be saved. That is confirmed in the sacred gospels and reinforced in the Epistles of the New Testament. We also have history to attest to the fact that many have been saved by being faithful, while many, many more have chosen eternal perdition because they placed more emphasis on the temporal than the supernatural. There are far many more in hell than Heaven, sad as that may seem and too many still in Purgatory who just got in by the skin of their teeth and the mercy of God and coaxing of Christ's Blessed and Immaculate Mother. Another sobering thought is that since satan has released all his weapons per Pope Leo XIII's vision, we should not be surprised at lucifer's many victories over these past 50 years. He is hell-bent to take every last soul to hell.

    Free will is our passport to Heaven or hell. We choose everlasting life by our actions on this earth. The Cross serves as a reminder to choose wisely. No wonder satan wants so much to eliminate any remembrance of the Cross of Christ. Dom Gueranger speaks of our joy in the Cross:

        How dear, then, to us should this day be, which blends together the recollection of the holy Cross and the joys of the Resurrection of that Jesus Who by the Cross has won the throne to which we shall soon see Him ascend! Let us thank our Heavenly Father for His having restored mankind a treasure so immensely precious as is the Cross. Until the day comes for it to appear with Himself in the clouds of Heaven, Jesus has entrusted to it his Spouse, as a pledge of His second coming. On that day, He will collect together all the fragments of His divine power; and the Tree of Life will then gladden the elect with its dazzling beauty, and invite them to eternal rest beneath its refreshing shade."

    Jesus says in Luke 18: 7-8, "And will not God avenge His elect, who cry to Him day and night: and will He have patience in their regard? I say to you He will quickly avenge them. But yet, when the Son of Man cometh, shall He find, think you, faith on earth?" That is truly something to ponder, even more today than in the past for we can see the house of cards that is the conciliar church which has so compromised the Cross of Christ, caving to the insensibilities of Protestants by removing the sacred Corpus so as not to offend non-Catholics. By such actions they are themselves non-Catholics and denying that it was indeed Christ Who died on the Cross. Think about it. Think how many have, in actuality, abandoned the True Faith. In name they call themselves Catholic, but in practice and commitment they are what Gabriel Garnica describes in his column today: lukewarm sewage regurgitated from the Lord's mouth! Why can they not see the sweet wood of the Cross? Why can they not pray with great hope so fervently with the Abbot the following?

        "Oh! that we had St. Helen's spirit, dear Jesus, and knew, as she did, the breadth, and length, and height, and depth of the mystery of thy Cross (Ephesians 3: 18). Her love of the mystery made her so earnest in her search for the Cross. And how sublime is the spectacle offered to us by this holy Empress! She adorns thy glorious Sepulchre; she raises thy Cross from its grave; who was there, that ever proclaimed with such solemnity as this: 'He is risen: He is not here!' The Cross exclaims: 'I held him captive but for a few passing hours: He is not here! He is resplendent in the glory of His Resurrection!' O Cross! O Sepulchre! how brief was the period of His humiliation, and how grand the kingdom He won by you! We will adore in you the place where His feet stood (Psalm 81: 7), making you the instruments of our Redemption, and thereby endearing you to our respectful love for ever. Glory, then, be to thee, O Cross! dear object of this day's festival! Continue to protect this world where our Jesus has left thee. Be its shield against Satan. Help us to remember that union of sacrifice and triumph which will support us in all our crosses, for it is by thee, O Cross! that Christ conquers, and reigns, and commands. CHRISTUS VINCIT, CHRISTUS REGNAT, CHRISTUS IMPERAT."

    Finally, it is interesting to note that the new three-year cycle liturgy of the conciliar church has struck this feast from its docket, as well as the feast of Saint Helena on August 18. Only the Exaltation of the Cross on September 14 remains in the Novus Ordo lite. It is all part of the overall picture to downplay the Cross for it conveys sacrifice and that is the last thing those who subscribe to the New Order want to be reminded of. But for True Catholics, it must ever be that constant reminder, tattooed to our hearts, minds and souls. Without it we are lost. Therefore, we must stand by the Cross at all times, never forsaking it for easier climes or temporal treasures that are so fleeting, for they have no worth compared to the incomparable Tree that stands forever and is rooted in the Rock of Peter. It is only in this sign that we will conquer!

Michael Cain, editor, The Daily Catholic


    WEDNESDAY
    May 3, 2006
    vol 17, no. 110
    VerbumQUO