Pope Francis stands to kiss the cross during the Good Friday liturgy

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29/03/2024
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The Good Friday service in St. Peter's Basilica started with Pope Francis sitting in his wheelchair, spending a few moments in silent reflection before a bare, empty altar.

The Pope presided over the Passion of the Lord liturgy but did not give a reflection. Following a Vatican tradition, the Preacher of the Papal Household, Cardinal Raniero Cantalamessa, spoke instead.

He reflected on how Jesus' resurrection was a different victory than what people had imagined—different from the victories of Roman emperors.

CARD. RANIERO CANTALAMESSA
Preacher of the Papal Household

There was, certainly, a triumph in the case of Christ, and a triumph both definitive and irreversible for that matter. But how does this triumph manifest itself? The resurrection occurs in mystery, without witnesses. His death — we heard in the story of the Passion — had been seen by a large crowd and had involved the highest religious and political authorities. Once resurrected, Jesus appears only to a few
disciples, out of the spotlight.

During this liturgy, there is a moment dedicated to venerating the cross. The Pope stood up from his chair to kiss the large crucifix.

This is the only day each year that there are no Masses in any Catholic church around the world.

KG

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