Monday, October 15, 2007

In the name of the Father


Why don't Protestants make the sign of the cross as Catholics do? It is the sign of our salvation, and expresses two important mysteries of the Christian religion; that of the Blessed Trinity and the Redemption. The sign of the cross is the most common way for Catholics to confess our faith, and by it we can know Catholics from non-Catholics.

When we say, "In the name," we express the truth that there is only one God, and when we say, "of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost," we express the truth that there are three distinct persons in one God. When we make the sign of the cross, we are confessing that we belong to the religion of the crucified Saviour. We are making a clear confession of our faith and by it we are known as being Catholic.

The sign of the cross is a prayer for God's blessing, and the saints used to make it to shield themselves against the temptations of the devil. It should be made slowly and reverently, to show our respect for the sign of our salvation. Nothing in the Church is begun or completed without making the sign of the cross. St John Damascene said, " The sign of the cross is a seal, at sight of which the destroying angel passes on, and does us no harm."

So if we neglect to make the sign of the cross in public, like when we say grace prior to eating, are we being cowardly about expressing our faith? In ancient times, Christians were persecuted for making the sign of the cross, but today it is more a matter of peer pressure or a lack of our own faith that keeps us from making this public profession of our faith. And when we hide our Catholicism by neglecting to publicly make the sign of the cross, we are denying the sign of our salvation, just as the protestants do.

10 comments:

Divine Mercy said...

honestly, i have no clue as to why they don't make the sign of the cross! i also don't get why they wont put a cross on the wall or at least standing in their homes? someone said its because Christ is resurrected or whatever, so there is no need to display a crucifix.

318@NICE said...

Well, I will say this. Being a former Lutheran, I know that traditional Lutherans make the sign of the cross. However, mainstream Lutherans do not.
Now conerning Baptists and the Reformed for example, they never do. Some of it, because they hate Rome and don't want to do anything to associate themselves with the Catholic Church. They almost grudgingly hold to the Trinity and the definition of Nicea because it was the Catholic Church that wrote that.
another reason why they don't make the sign of the cross, and never say, "IN the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost (except when they baptize)" is because they barely believe in the Trinity.
The one test I always do with Protestants is ask them, "Do you believe that Mary is the Mother of God?" You'd be surprised how many say "no." But if one denies that Mary is the Mother of God, then you deny the incarnation of Christ and if you deny the incarnation of Christ then you deny the Trinity.
This is why I left the Protestant Church.
just my thoughts on the subject,
Dave

ignorant redneck said...

most of the protestants I was raised by and around had a cross on the wall. They wouldn't use a crucifix, because it was an idol, and because Christ was resurected.

Some of the Protestants I met in europe used the sign of the cross, as do Anglicans, Lutherans have been mentioned, and some of the "emergent churches" do.

Tom in Vegas said...

Good point. We do the sign of the cross when we drive by a Catholic Church or even a cemetery.

Tom

paramedicgirl said...

Tom, I always try to remember to make the sign of the cross when I drive by a Catholic Church, out of respect for the Blessed Sacrament being reposed there. I should get in the habit of doing the same at a cemetery, though. I had forgotten that one.

Entropy said...

Thanks for this! Good post!

Kevin - "pax tecum" said...

Making the Sign of the Cross is in itself a prayer and can be done at anytime...I use it in many instances and especially when I feel isolated or in dire need of closeness with God...

Sara said...

I'm a refugee from a cross-phobic restoration movement church. While my former church shared many theological points with Catholicism (baptismal regeneration, justification, etc) it was very anti-cross.

I was never entire sure why but we were discouraged from even wearing a cross as a pendant on a necklace. Personally, I think the reason is because it would have made us look "too catholic." I do remember once asking and being told: "It's an instrument of execution, if Christ was killed in an electric chair would you wear that on a necklace?"

My answer--well, if that's what it took for Our Lord to fulfill the plan of salvation then sure.

Anonymous said...

Well, the sign of the cross is purely a "religious" ritual. So, in the Protestant religion, we don't have this ritual. We do believe that "no one comes to the Father except by me" that's why we say, "In the name of Jesus Christ" before we end our prayers. We do have crucifixes but without a tiny man nailed to it. Just the cross. We all have different interpretations of the Bible and I think that some of the religions just got carried away and threw in some rituals of their own. But if u research it in the Bible, you won't find any of it there.

Still Practicing said...

Anonymous said...
"Well, the sign of the cross is purely a "religious" ritual. So, in the Protestant religion, we don't have this ritual. We do believe that "no one comes to the Father except by me" that's why we say, "In the name of Jesus Christ" before we end our prayers. We do have crucifixes but without a tiny man nailed to it. Just the cross. We all have different interpretations of the Bible and I think that some of the religions just got carried away and threw in some rituals of their own. But if u research it in the Bible, you won't find any of it there."

First of all there is ONLY one official interpretation of the Bible and that is the one from the only one that has the authority to interpret it -- The Catholic Church.

Second as far as crucifixes go --- a cross is just a cross with out Christ and as Paul said, "we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumbling block, and unto the Gentiles foolishness" (1 Corinthians 1:23).

And, unfortunately, only thing that got carried away were those poor souls that chose to believe man over Christ and separate themselves from our sweet Holy Mother Church (the Catholic Church)(Matthew 16:18).