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By the Sign of the Cross we pledge allegiance to Christ and invite the Holy Spirit to apply the cross to our lives—to take up our cross and follow Christ. Ezekiel provides precedence for a sign upon the forehead of believers Ezek ; —14 as does Revelation Rev ; ; There is reason to believe that the Jewish Christians used the Sign of the Cross prior to the destruction of Jerusalem in ad The writings of the Fathers, as authentic witnesses to the apostolic teaching in the early Church, are replete with references to the Sign of the Cross.

The practice is already well established in the 2 nd century as attested to by Tertullian ad c. If, for these and other such rules, you insist upon having positive Scripture injunction, you will find none.

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Origen ad c. There has never been a time in the flow of historic Christianity that the Sign of the Cross has not been devoutly practiced. Only recently, since the Reformation, has the Sign of the Cross along with the Crucifix, holy water and other visible signs been rejected as idolatrous by many Protestant traditions. However, even Martin Luther in his Taufbuechlein retained the Sign of the Cross in the baptismal service and used the Sign of the Cross as one of his last gestures before death H. Grizar, Luther , Origen : The Faith of Catholics, Rev.

Chapel, ed. Grizar citation : Luther, Hartmann Grizar, B. Herder Book Co. The image of the altar boy with the steps to making the sign of the cross is classic.

I have printed it and posted it on my fridge at eye-level for my seven-year-old son who has just begun serving Mass in the Extraordinary Form. I hope the image inspires him to make the sign of the cross mindfully and devoutly. Hi guys. I need to know what is the biggest difference between the modern Christianity and Catholic religions? Its part of what is called The Divine Economy of Authority.

Blessings flow down from those who posses spiritual authority, never up, or across. Its simply impossible. Very few people have said anything about it to me, especially in a corporate America environment. However, just this past week, out of the blue, two co-workers have started to ask me questions about Catholicism. One a lifelong but perhaps lukewarm Catholic and the other some flavor of Protestantism. I like to think of our simple act of Love of God is some form of apostolate…seed planting…even if on delayed growth. I used to make the sign of the Cross before every exam it worked : I make it also before I start a journey.

Thank you! I have a question. When I observe my Hispanic brothers and sisters making the sign of the cross at church, they kiss their fingers after touching the right shoulder. I have often thought that it was because Hispanic culture has historically been very devoted to the Rosary, and you kiss the Crucifix on a Rosary after you make the Sign of the Cross with it.

This movement, after saying many Rosaries, would become instinctual and be passed on without the knowledge of where it came from, hence kissing your empty fingers after the Sign of the Cross. I have read that, the thumb and index finger are put together to make a small cross , so then it is like you are kissing the cross.

Also apparently it started out as an Irish custom. Hope that helped. This is a beautiful way of growing up. I was also raised this way.

Deacon-structing the Cross part 2: Making the Sign

The act of signing ourselves on the forehead, lips and chest is called persignarse and just making the sign of the cross is called santiguarse. We make the sign of the cross when we pass a Cemetary or place where people have been buried. We cross and pray that the departed souls are in heaven, and if not, in Purgatory. We ask during this time we do cross for Mother Mary to help intercede and bring up at least one soul from Purgatory each day. This is what we pass on to our children.


Thanks for a great article. The sign of the cross is a major theme in our PSR class. When passing a cemetary: there should be a relic of an unamed saint in there somewhere, and as a prayer for those in Purgatory. When passing a roadside shrine: as a prayer fir the departed who may have died suddenly, and for their family. I make the sign of the cross and say a brief prayer when I hear the siren of an emergency vehicle police, ambulance, fire.

Great article and something we often take for granted. The home is the domestic Church.

Why do Catholics make the Sign of the Cross? - About Catholics

I make the sign when I am afraid- and almost instantly my fear goes away. However, I sometimes do the Sign nonchalantly now, and I need to be careful of that. Sorry, we didn't find anything. How to Bless Your Children.

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