Pastor's Corner, part 1

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The Sign of the Cross
“Receive the sign of the holy cross both upon your forehead and upon your heart to mark you as one
redeemed by Christ the crucified.”

During the Summer months, the adult Bible study took a pause from our study of the Gospel of Luke and had the opportunity to answer many questions submitted confidentially by members of the congregation. I believe we had some very good discussion ranging from questions about Genesis all the way to the second coming of Christ.

For this month’s newsletter article, I would like to continue that question/answer format based upon a question posed by many members: the making of the sign of the cross. I have taken the liberty of merging some of these questions below and hope they will be a benefit to us all.

Q: What does it mean to make the sign of the cross on yourself or when a pastor does it to a baby during baptism?
A: The making of the sign of the cross was first placed over an infant or an adult when they were baptized to show them, the congregation, and the devil himself that this person has been “marked and redeemed by Christ the crucified.” It is a wonderful pronouncement that we have been saved by Jesus Christ Himself and even marked/branded with a cross on our foreheads and hearts.

Q: Pastor, I see there are a few members in our congregation who will make the sign of the cross, and you will do it yourself during the service. I always thought that was a Roman Catholic practice … is it?
A: The making of the sign of the cross does not belong solely to the Roman Catholic Church. The practice is a Christian one not belonging to any one denomination. Although you may find certain denominations like the Roman Catholics, Episcopalians, Orthodox and Lutherans using it more often, you will find less liturgical denominations using it at the beginning and closing of worship.