This Good Friday as we celebrate the Liturgy of the Lord’s Passion at the St. Joseph site, parishioners might want to look twice before reverencing the cross with a kiss or caress.
The crucifix should look familiar to long time St. Joe attendants, as it was the one which hung in the sanctuary for years before the current mission crucifix took its place. Some dedicated volunteers found the old crucifix while digging out the Lenten decorations from the basement. It was in the “to be burned” pile with other scraps of wood. Though we estimate it has only been in the basement for about 10 years, there was water damage to the wood of the cross and some corrosion on the bronze pieces. The corpus was chipped, cracked, and even chewed through, probably by a squirrel. It hurt many of us to look at a parish treasure in that shape. I made some inquires and a generous parishioner offered to do the work of restoring the crucifix. Unfortunately, we could not salvage the corpus. A new one was purchased by the parish. While I would like to hang it somewhere in St. Joseph, there are a few reasons that make it impractical. First, liturgical law would have us only have one crucifix in the main body of the church. That is the reason the crucifix went to the basement in the first place. Second, if we were to swap it with the mission crucifix it would be half the current size, and then we would have to find someplace to keep the much larger crucifix. Third, the remaining places for the restored crucifix would be in one of the sacristies which only a handful of people are in. Therefore, after its use in the Good Friday Liturgy we will hang it in the main office so that everyone who comes in will be able to see it up close and appreciate it. We hope you will stop by!
Have a blessed Holy Week! -Fr. Sal