Liturgy Alive Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross
Praise to God our Father,
who loved us so much
that he gave us his only Son,
so that all who believe in him may have eternal life.
May Jesus fill us with his life
and be with you always. R/ And also with you.
Introduction by the Celebrant
Crosses are always hard to carry and we are tempted to grumble and rebel in the pains and trials of life. But Jesus went ahead of us: he bore the cross for us and died on it, then he rose from the dead. God is stronger than death, and the foolishness and scandal of the cross has saved us from sin and death. The cross was Jesus' way to victory. For every disciple of Christ it is the way to life and resurrection. Let us join Jesus in this eucharist and celebrate with him the sacrifice of the cross.
How do we take crosses? Do we bear them with Christ?
Is the Lord's cross to us a scandal
or our hope and salvation?
Let us examine ourselves before the Lord.
Lord, you saved us by your cross,
yet crosses embarrass us, yours and ours.
We easily revolt against them.
Lord, have mercy. R/ Lord, have mercy.
Jesus Christ, you humbled yourself
to bring us compassion and pardon,
yet we seek honors and success.
Christ, have mercy. R/ Christ, have mercy.
Lord, the cross was your way to glory
and we give a place of honor to your cross
in our homes but not in our lives.
Lord, have mercy. R/ Lord, have mercy.
Have mercy on us, Lord,
forgive us again and again;
help us to bear our crosses with faith and love
and lead us to everlasting life. R/ Amen.
Let us pray to God that we may learn
to bear our cross with his Son
Lord, God of loyalty,
we are constantly under the threat
of contesting our dependence on you
and of blaming you for the evil in the world.
Lord God, make us see
the redeeming value of suffering.
Give us the mentality of Jesus Christ:
make us ready to be totally Christian,
totally committed to you and to people,
even at the cost of suffering.
Give us the strength to follow all the way
your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. R/ Amen
Liturgy of the Word
First Reading Introduction: Saved by Faith in the Sign of Salvation
Tired and discouraged from their long journey and stay in the desert, the Hebrews lose faith in God and begin to revolt. God punishes them, but saves those who look up in faith to a sign of salvation.
Second Reading Introduction:
The Humiliated Christ Is Glorified
Jesus, God's Son himself, humbled himself by becoming someone like us and even more so by dying for us on the cross. This is why he is now our glorious Lord.
Gospel Introduction: Jesus' Saving Death Gives Life
Because he loved us, God sent his Son into the world as man. By his death, Jesus brought us forgiveness and life.
God loved the world so much that he gave his only Son to save us and bring us life by his death and resurrection. Let us pray to Jesus for all who suffer and let us say: R/ Lord, save us by your cross.
- For those whose life lacks direction, that they may discover Christ the way, let us pray: R/ Lord, save us by your cross.
- For those whose ideals have faded, that they may see and accept the novelty of life and constantly renew themselves, let us pray: R/ Lord, save us by your cross.
- For the perennial losers of their personal struggles against the forces of evil, that they may trust in Christ, whose grace is mightier than sin and death, let us pray: R/ Lord, save us by your cross.
- For those who are lonely, deserted, or shut up within themselves, that they may accept the companionship of Christ and through him open themselves to others, let us pray: R/ Lord, save us by your cross.
- For all of us, that we may learn from our Lord himself to bear our crosses in patience and humility, that in some way they may bring life to us and to whoever is tired and discouraged, let us pray: R/ Lord, save us by your cross.
- For this community, that with Jesus our Savior it may be poor and serving and open to all people and all needs, let us pray: R/ Lord, save us by your cross.
Lord Jesus Christ, your cross remains a mystery to us, as does all pain and want. We rely on your word and example that your cross is a way to joy and freedom. Turn our crosses into bearers of happiness and life, now and for ever. R/ Amen.
Prayer over the Gifts
Lord God, with this bread and this wine
we celebrate the saving death of your Son.
In moments when suffering strikes
and when we find it hard to bear,
give us the strength, Lord God,
not to murmur and to contest
but to accept that it is your way to glory,
even if we do not understand fully.
We ask you for this courage
through Christ our Lord. R/ Amen.
Introduction to the Eucharistic Prayer
Remember that in this and every eucharist we celebrate the sacrifice of the cross by which Jesus brought us forgiveness and life. Let us thank the Father for it and offer ourselves with Jesus our Lord, that we may overcome evil with him.
Introduction to the Lord's Prayer
Grateful for his saving love,
we pray to our Father in heaven
in the words of Jesus, our Savior: R/ Our Father...
Deliver us, Lord, from every evil
and forgive us the sins
which caused your Son's death on the cross.
Help us to join our crosses to his;
give us courage and patience in life,
as we wait in joyful hope
for the coming of our Savior Jesus Christ. R/ For the kingdom...
Invitation to Communion
This is the Lamb of God
who died on the cross
to take our sins away.
Happy are we to be invited
to eat his bread of strength. R/ Lord, 1 am not worthy...
Prayer after Communion
God, our Lord and Father,
we know that you have made us
for joy and happiness,
yet humiliation and death was the price
which your Son had to pay.
Let us never be ashamed of his cross
or proclaim a painless Christianity,
for we trust you when you call us
to bear witness to you the way you want us to,
through Jesus Christ, your Son and Lord. R/ Amen.
We ourselves have been marked
with the sign of the cross
as people saved by a serving Lord.
On account of the cross,
we have to learn to forgive,
to bear one another's burdens
and to accept the realities of life
as people of hope and trust,
with the blessing of almighty God,
the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. R/ Amen.
Let us go in the peace of Christ. R/ Thanks be to God.