St Mary Magdalene † St Bartholomew † St Alban †
Sunday 10th April 2011
Today, in our church we enter the Passiontide.This is name given to these last two weeks of Lent.
In St. Mary’s you will see all the crucifixes have be covered in a violet veil.Some might think this a strange practice.
Yet like many of the other symbols and actions we have inherited during this most holy time of the year the veiling of the crucifixes is designed to enable to follow in the footsteps of Christ. So you ask where do the covering of the crucifixes help us in our journey?
The veiling of the crucifixes was associated with a Gospel passage that was often read in church this morning John 8.58-59:
‘The Jews said to him, ‘You are not yet fifty years old, and have you seen Abraham?’* 58Jesus said to them, ‘Very truly, I tell you, before Abraham was, I am.’ 59So they picked up stones to throw at him, but Jesus hid himself and went out of the temple.’
It was Jesus hiding of himself that our veiling of the crucifixes in church signifies. Jesus, we read in the Gospels, would quite often disappear during his ministry amongst the disciples. He would often go to a quiet place to pray or just to get away from the crowds or demands of his ministry. So the temporary symbolic absence of Jesus is for many of us a useful reminder of an important part of Jesus’ life.