During 2019 I visited St. Albans Church, Beacon Hill for Acorn services. I noticed that they had both a Crucifix and a Cross in prominent places. This reawakened my thinking about both symbols related to Easter time.
If you enter Roman Catholic, Orthodox and High Anglican Churches you will find that the Crucifix is the predominant symbol; whereas Non-Conformist and Low Anglican Churches favor the Cross.
I feel that we need to honor and cherish both symbols.
When I look upon a Crucifix, I am reminded that Jesus was a real Human Being, and not an idea.
He suffered humiliation, desertion by friends, insults, whipping and finally an unwarranted execution. While he died for all mankind, when I look upon a crucifix it reminds me, He did it for me! ME!
The Crucifix brings me to that point of exceptional Love meeting Mankind’s cruelty. The sight of the body on the cross somehow makes it more real to me. I am drawn to Good Friday. Jesus, wholly Man ( and mysteriously wholly God) , underwent it all to mend the relationship between us and God.
But, as we believe, it wasn’t the End. We have Easter Sunday. The Resurrection declaring new life with God. For this I need the empty Cross. This declares the Victory of Christ. Where the dualism of Christ being wholly Man while wholly God becomes more clear. Also with the empty cross I see there is room for me on the cross, room to put aside myself and embrace Christ’s victory, claim the new life for myself through Him.
For me the two symbols span the Easter message.
Just as we need both Good Friday and Easter Sunday, and cannot embrace one without the other so I believe we should cherish both the Crucifix and the Cross as symbols of those days, but also as a means to contemplate deeper the meanings of both days.
I believe that we need to honor and cherish both symbols equally. Above All its all about HIM.