Mass of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross

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Today is the patronal festival of the Basilica of Santa Croce in Gerusalemme, the abbatial church of my own Cistercian community. Santa Croce is one of the seven principal basilicas of the Eternal City. Pilgrims from the world over make their way to Santa Croce to venerate the precious relics of the Passion of the Lord: the wood of the Cross, two thorns of the Crown, one Nail, and the Titulus Crucis, the sign that was suspended over the Crucified.
Today is also the patronal festival of the Cistercian Monastery of Santa Cruz in Guadalajara, Mexico, a recent foundation of Santa Croce in Gerusalemme,
and of the Monastery of the Glorious Cross in Branford, Connecticut, where I serve as chaplain to the Benedictines of Jesus Crucified.


It is for us to glory
in the Cross of our Lord Jesus Christ
in whom is our health, life, and resurrection:
through whom we have been saved
and set free (cf. Gal 6:14).
V. May God be merciful to us and bless us;
may his face shine its light upon us,
and may he show us mercy (Ps 66:1).


Brothers and sisters, let us acknowledge our sins,
that we may be ready to celebrate the sacred mysteries.

You emptied yourself, taking the form of a slave,
being born in human likeness (Phil 2:7).
Kyrie, eleison.

You humbled yourself and became obedient unto death,
even death on a cross (Phil 2:8).
Christe, eleison.

Lifted up from the earth,
you draw all men to yourself (Jn 12:32).
Kyrie, eleison.

May Almighty God have mercy on us,
and lead us, with our sins forgiven,
into eternal life.


O God,
who willed that your only-begotten Son
should endure the Cross
for the salvation of the human race,
grant, we beseech you,
that knowing the mystery of the Cross on earth,
we may be found worthy
of the rewards of its redemption in heaven.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
God, forever and ever.


For the holy Church of God in East and West;
that, radiant with the splendour of the glorious Cross,
she may shine in the darkness of the world
as a beacon of hope and of salvation,
to the Lord we pray: Christ, hear us. R. CHRIST, GRACIOUSLY HEAR US.

For the leaders of all nations;
that, by serving with integrity and compassion
they may hasten the triumph of the Cross of Christ
in every place and in every human situation,
to the Lord we pray: Christ, hear us. R. CHRIST, GRACIOUSLY HEAR US.

For the victims of violence and war
that they may be comforted in their grief
and sustained in carrying their burden,
to the Lord we pray: Christ, hear us. R. CHRIST, GRACIOUSLY HEAR US.

For those who, in the desert of this life,
have fallen prey to poisonous serpents,
and for all who suffer;
that in the precious and life-giving Cross of Christ
they may find healing, hope, and steadfast love,
to the Lord we pray: Christ, hear us. R. CHRIST, GRACIOUSLY HEAR US.

That the Cistercian monks of the Abbey of the Holy Cross in Jerusalem
may flourish in holiness and in numbers
so as to bear witness at the heart of the Church
to the joy that unfailingly flows from the Cross,
to the Lord we pray: Christ, hear us. R. CHRIST, GRACIOUSLY HEAR US.

For the Benedictines of Jesus Crucified
here, in France, and in Japan,
and for their oblates and our friends;
that formed by the Word of the Cross,
and instructed by the sacred liturgy,
they may fix their gaze upon the Face of Jesus Crucified
in whom is our health, life, and resurrection,
to the Lord we pray: Christ, hear us. R. CHRIST, GRACIOUSLY HEAR US.


Almighty and ever-living God,
who heeded the prayer of your servant Moses
on behalf of your afflicted people in the wilderness,
and commanded him to lift up
the sign of your healing compassion
in their midst,
mercifully grant that we whom you have called
to live in the brightness of the glorious Cross,
may radiate its mystery in all of life,
that, by it, many may ascend, even now,
from the sorrows of the present time
to the joy of your Kingdom.
Through Christ our Lord.


By the sign of the Holy Cross, O Lord,
protect your people from the wiles of all our enemies,
that we may be able to offer you worthy service,
and that our sacrifice may be acceptable in your sight, alleluia.


May this offering, O Lord,
the same that on the altar of the Cross
took away the sins of the entire world,
cleanse us, we beseech you, of all our offenses.
Through Christ our Lord.


It is truly right and just, our duty and our salvation,
always and everywhere to give you thanks,
Lord, holy Father, almighty and eternal God.

You decreed the salvation of the human race
by the tree of the Cross,
that whence death had first come forth
there life might rise again;
and that he who conquered by a tree,
by a tree might also be overcome,
through Christ our Lord.

Through Whom the Angels praise your majesty
the Dominations adore,
and the Powers tremble.
The Heavens, and the Virtues of the heavens,
join together with the blessed Seraphim,
in one exultant hymn.

Let our voices, we entreat you, be joined to theirs,
as we humbly sing our praise:

Deliver us, O God, from our enemies
by the sign of the Cross.


Lord Jesus Christ,
having been nourished by your holy banquet,
we humbly pray
that you would lead to the glory of the resurrection
those whom you have redeemed
by the wood of the life-giving Cross.
Who live and reign forever and ever.


May God, the Father of mercies,
who so loved the world that he gave his only Son,
heal you, save you, and raise you up
by the power of the glorious Cross.
R. Amen.

May Jesus Christ,
obedient unto death, even death on a cross,
reveal to you the splendour of his triumph
and confirm you in the hope of glory.
R. Amen.

May the Holy Spirit poured out
wheresoever the Cross is lifted up
be to you health and peace,
comfort and unfading joy.
R. Amen.

And may the blessing of Almighty God,
the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit,
descend upon you, and remain with you forever.
R. Amen.

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About Dom Mark

Dom Mark Daniel Kirby is Conventual Prior of Silverstream Priory in Stamullen, County Meath, Ireland. The ecclesial mandate of his Benedictine community is the adoration of the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar in a spirit of reparation, and in intercession for the sanctification of priests.

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