One thing I love about our church is the cross. A Franciscan parish from the time it was founded in 1913, our church has a huge San Damiano Cross on the wall behind the altar. It’s more than a cross–it’s an icon, and every little detail has meaning. Read all about it, then gaze upon a large San Damiano Cross if you can find one. It’s a wonderful meditation.
It’s such a wonderful road to prayer, in fact, that I hesitate a bit to share this story. But I thought it was funny, so I’m going to tell it anyway.
The altar servers at our parish often wear a little cross over their albs. But the crosses aren’t all the same. Some have the words “Altar Server” inscribed on them. Others are San Damiano crosses. On Sunday, Little Brother got himself vested for altar serving, then came out to wait by me in the choir area. After I fixed his collar (an every-Sunday occurrence) I told him that I was glad he was wearing the San Damiano cross because it’s my favorite one.
He wanted to know why, and I showed him that it matched the cross on the wall in the church. He’d never noticed it before (possibly because he usually sits with the musicians who don’t have a good view of it) and I pointed out some of the figures on the cross.
Then I mentioned the “angels with halos” at the very top. Suddenly he got interested. “Halo people?” he asked. “I thought those were only in video games!”