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Rosary Workshop - Rome Pilgrimage
 RELICS of the PASSION
 SANTA CROCE in GERUSALEMME


HOLY CROSS
BROUGHT TO ROME BY ST HELEN
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RELICS OF THE TRUE CROSS
The Relics of the crucifixion of Jesus were brought to Rome -  from Jerusalem -  by St Helena, mother of the first Christian Emperor of Rome in the early part of the 4th Century.  By tradition the first building to house the relics of the Passion in Rome was on the property where she lived. The land was packed with earth from Jerusalem which gave it its name.

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for more information 
HOLY CROSS   -   NAIL / TITLE BOARD
THORNS, FINGER   -   HOLY CROSS
also see these links
   -  ST DISMAS   -   SM RELIQUARY
and don't miss these links
READINGS   -   HISTORY
MORE LINKS
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Photos were taken on a Pentecost Pilgrimage to Rome in 1998.  Missing for 4 years, they were found today, on this, the feast of the Triumph of the Holy Cross - September 14th 2002.



 THE RELICS OF THE PASSION

~ HOLY CROSS at JERUSALEM ~

OF JESUS CHRIST
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 "Christ opened his arms on the Cross to embrace the whole World, because Golgotha stood at the centre of the World"(St. Cyril)
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(below, an over view of 3 reliquaries)
 CRUCIFIXION NAIL
3 FRAGMENTS OF THE
HOLY CROSS
INRI TITLE BOARD

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~ NAIL & TITLE BOARD ~
  THE RELICS OF 
THE PASSION OF JESUS CHRIST
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CRUCIFIXION NAIL -  INRI - TITLE BOARD
(note the visible markings on the title board below)
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 Christ humbled himself, becoming obedient to death, even death on a cross. (cf.Phil 2:8)
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DEATH IS LIFE
The cross, instrument of torture and death, raised aloft as a sign of glory, continues to confound the wisdom of this world. God's word of salvation stands human expectations on their head: humility is exaltation, wounds are healing, death is life.
NAIL OF CRUCIFIXION
TITULUS CRUCIS 
 PART OF TITLE BOARD 
SHOWING  ''NAZARENUS'
(Savior from a small village in Galilee)
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 Pilate also had an inscription written and put on the cross. It read, "Jesus the Nazorean, the King of the Jews."  Now many of the Jews read this inscription, because the place where Jesus was crucified was near the city; and it was written in Hebrew, Latin, and Greek.  So the chief priests of the Jews said to Pilate, "Do not write 'The King of the Jews,' but that he said, 'I am the King of the Jews.'"  Pilate answered, "What I have written, I have written." (Jn 19:22)
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STILL LEGIBLE IN 1492
History has it that, on finding the title board, it was split into 3 pieces by St. Helen. She  gave one to her son, Emperor Constantine and left one in Jerusalem and brought one section back to Rome (above).  It was missing for a long time, then found hidden in the wall in a lead box for protection in 1492. Witnesses said at that time, the lettering was still well defined with color still showing. Carbon dating put the walnut wood at 1st to 4th c (original believed to be approx. 12 in) 
 




~ TWO THORNS / FINGER  ~
 THORNS FROM CROWN
 And the soldiers wove a crown out of thorns and placed it on his head, ... and they came to him and said, "Hail, King of the Jews!"  Once more Pilate went out and said to them, "Look, I am bringing him out to you, so that you may know that I find no guilt in him."  So Jesus came out, wearing the crown of thorns and the purple cloak. And he said to them, "Behold, the man!" (Jn 19:4-5)
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THORNS FROM CROWN

FINGER OF THOMAS
  FINGER OF THOMAS 
 Now a week later his disciples were again inside and Thomas was with them. Jesus came, although the doors were locked ...  Then he said to Thomas, "Put your finger here and see my hands, and bring your hand and put it into my side, and do not be unbelieving, but believe."  Thomas answered and said to him,  "My Lord and my God!"(Jn 20:26-28)
 




~ FRAGMENTS ofthe HOLY CROSS ~
WOOD FRAGMETS 
IN THE TWO ARMS OF THE CROSS ARMS
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 Behold the wood of the cross, on which has hung our salvation: come, let us adore!
(cf Veneration of the Cross/Good Friday)
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This closeup of the reliquary cross (above) shows 2 of the 3 slivers of the Holy Cross of Jesus. The center image below is the reverse side of the reliquary.  The two side images (below) are of the obverse side.

FRONT

REVERSE

FRONT
 May I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.  (Gal 6:14)



CROSSBOARD ~
 CROSSBOARD OF 
ST DISMAS, THE  GOOD THIEF 
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 Then He said, "Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom." Jesus replied, "Amen I say to you, today you will be with Me in paradise" (Lk 23:42-43).
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 There they crucified Him, and with Him two others, one on either side, with Jesus in the middle (Jn 19:18).




~ SMALL  RELIQUARY CRUCIFIX ~
 OPENED 
RELIQUARYCRUCIFIX
The beautiful thing about wearing a crucifix, cross or holy religous medal is that it travels before you - as if to protect and break a pathe of faith
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 SHOWING SPLINTER
OF THE HOLY CROSS FROM 
THE VATICAN FRAGMENT
Small splinters from the Vatican fragment of the Holy Cross have been set into wearable crucifix reliquaries.  Each has been placed into a small metal cross, then wrapped with red threads.  The threads were secured with a red wax seal of the Vatican to authenticate the relic. It was then set into a larger Reliquary Cross. These relics were then made available to bishops, cardinals, priests and laity.   This created an embracing cross,  scattered throughout the world so that it may be venerated by all. (We were told that they are no longer available to laity)
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ANCIENT TRADITION TELL US
Tradition says that when Christ returns, these tiny splinters of wood will converge into its original position and the Holy Cross of Jesus will again be complete. 
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CLOSE UP OF FRAGMENT

'EX LIG. CRUCIS D.N.J.C.'
D.N.J.C.:  ex ligneo - (from the wood) - crucis (the cross) - Domini Nostri Jesu Christi - (our Lord, Jesus Christ)
WAX SEAL - VATICAN
Red strings secure relic and are intact.  It is sealed with wax, protecting the integrity & validity of the authentication of the relic.
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HOW MANY
SLIVERS iN THE TRUE CROSS?
We have often wondered, and maybe you have too -  if all the known slivers of wood claimed to be part of the true cross were put together today, how large of a cross would it make?  French architect Charles Rohault de Fleury, who was also involved in religious archaeology, wrote a magnificent book, "Les instruments de la Passion", Paris, 1870.  He measured all existing relics known and those that have long been lost.  He discovered that if indeed they were all put together they would only fill one third of the original and true cross.




~ SCRIPTURE READINGS ~
(Psalm 92 - 2 - 7,9)
 iI It is good to give thanks to the Lord, to make music to your name, O Most High, to proclaim your love in the morning and your truth in the watches of the night, on the ten-stringed lyre and the lute, with the murmuring sound of the harp.our deeds 
O Lord, have made me glad; for the work of your hands I shout with joy.  O Lord, how great are your works! How deep are your designs!  The foolish man cannot know this and the fool cannot understand.  But you, Lord, are eternally on high. 




~ MINI HISTORY ~
 ORAL TRADITION
REVEALED ITS HIDING PLACE
The area where Christ was crucified and buried was easy to find as Hadrian, tired of the pilgrimages to this holy place in Jerusalem, had a Pagan Temple - possibly dedicated to Aphrodite, built over the spot to subdue the Christian crowds. Hadrian also renamed Jerusalem, Aelia Capitolina and had statue to Jupiter Capitolinus erected. But the Christians of Jerusalem kept their very holy and important site in their hearts, passing it from generation to generation in the custom and tradition of their country and for many, their Jewish heritage.
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(325-426)
A PAGAN TEMPLE
BUILT ATOP THE HOLY SITE
Because of these beautiful and holy people, the bishop of Jerusalem, Marcarius knew where the holy sites were and had hoped the new Christian Emperor, Constantine would support and restore them.  So in 325/326 CE, during the first ecumenical council of Nicea he invited Emperor Constantine to destroy the pagan temples built atop the Christian holy sites in the Holy City. With this, Constantine sent his mother, St Helene to Jerusalem to restore the  Christian site and have the pagan temple(s) destroyed.
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(265-340)
EUSEBITUS CONFIRMED 
In the writings of Eusebius, Bishop of Caesarea (265-340 AD), we learn that there were hundreds of people involved in the diggings.  In the process of tearing the temple and adjoining buildings down, they found more than the cave of the Resurrection, that was described in detail by Eusebius.  They also uncovered the rock of Golgotha and found an ancient Malachite rock quarry where 3 crosses were discovered near the site of Calvary. 
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BEYOND ALL OUR HOPES
He wrote: "The work was carried out, and, as layer after layer of the subsoil came into view, the venerable and most holy memorial of the Savior's resurrection, beyond all our hopes, came into view, the holy of holies, the cave .... by its very existence bearing clearer testimony to the resurrection of the Savior than any words."
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(BY 355) 
FEAST OF EXALTATION
In 355, the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross was established in Jerusalem.  Its purpose was to dedicate the Basilica of the Resurrection.  By 395, St John of Chrysostom had written about the finding of the three crosses by Empress Helena along with others who documented this remarkable event.
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BEGINING OF THE CHURCH
 OF THE HOLY SEPULCHRE (JERUSALEM)
 Eventually, Constantine would begin building the first church over the holy sites. During the Crusader Period, the Basilica of the Holy Sepulchre was completed by bringing together the scattered sites, including the last Stations of the Cross (Via Dolorosa) under one building.  Today, after fire, earthquakes and war, the Basilica has been restored in the form of a cross.



 please enjoy these beautiful sites but don't forget to come back!

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 also see our rosary inspired by 
THE HOLY CROSS OF JERUSALEM
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Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives.  Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid." John 14:26-28

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