Rorate Caeli

The Crucified Christ


For the Apostle, the Resurrection is not an event which stands by itself, separated from death: the Risen one is always the one who was, first, crucified. Even Risen, he bears his wounds: the Passion is present in Him, and it may be said with Pascal that He is suffering even unto the end of the world, even though he is the Risen one, and lives with us, and for us.

Paul had understood this identity of the Risen one with the Crucified Christ in the encounter on the Road to Damascus: in that moment, it was clearly revealed to him that the Crucified is the Risen one, and that the Risen one is the Crucified, who asks Paul, “Why do you persecute me?” (Acts ix, 4). Paul is persecuting Christ in the Church, and now understands that the Cross is a “curse from God” (Deuteronomy xxi, 23), but a sacrifice for our Redemption.
Benedict XVI
General Audience
October 22, 2008

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