Crosses are now in fashion. The unmovable
hatred of atheists toward the crucifix (remember the "Death of a
Pioneer" of Bagritsky: "do not resist, Valenka, he will not eat
you?") is replaced by a new fashion. Crosses of various forms and sizes,
expensive and not very, are sold in cooperative stores next to vodka in
underground passages and jewelry stores. The cross is becoming the symbol of
our time, but not as a sign of faith, but as an image of derision over
The Cross — is the greatest Christian holy relic,
the visible evidence of our expiation. In the service of the Raising the Church
sings the praise of the wood of the Lord’s Cross with many praises: "The
Cross is the preserver of all the universe. The Cross
is the comeliness of the Church. The Cross is the might of kings. The Cross is
the steadfastness of believers. The Cross is the glory of the angels and the
sting of demons." From the first centuries of Christianity every believer
wears a cross on his breast, fulfilling the words of the Savior: "Whosoever
will come after Me, let him deny himself,and
take up his cross and follow Me" (Mark ).
The cross is put on every newly baptized person as a shield of faith and weapon
The unclean power fears nothing more than the
cross. And nothing pleases them more than the careless treatment of the cross.
Those crosses which are sold in the church, are blessed through a special ritual. There exist
canonical forms of the cross: four, six, and eight pointed, with a half-circle
at the bottom and others, each line having its symbolic meaning. On the reverse
side of Russian crosses one traditionally finds the words: "Save and
protect." Modern "stall" crosses often do not even resemble
the Golgotha cross. In several dioceses (for example, Crimea)
bishops forbid the acceptance of crucifixes for blessing prepared outside the
church shop. There is reason behind this, because sometimes the priest is given
a cross, and instead of Christ — there is a woman surrounded by radiance.
"Where did you get this?" "Some fellows were selling it on the
street, wearing blue robes…"
But even a blessed cross cannot be worn without
reverence. A sacred item, used without proper honor, is defiled and instead of
help from above brings God’s anger on the defiler. The cross is not a
medallion, nor an expensive bauble. "God is not mocked" (Gal.
There are no rules for the material from which
the cross is made. Obviously, expensive metals can be used, because for the
Christian there cannot be anything dearer than the cross — from this stems the
desire to decorate it. But, certainly, plain wooden or metal crosses are nearer
in spirit to the Lord’s Cross. There is also no principle difference between a
chain and a string: mainly, the cross should be held securely.