The Prayer Before A Crucifix can help us better reflect on our Lord’s Passion and on our own spiritual well being. The crucifix itself, a cross with a painted or carved representation of Christ’s body, began to be used in devotions around the end of the 6th century. It plays an important part both in the procession and on the altar at Mass.
The cross and crucifix are both sacramentals, defined as either objects (such as statues, medals, holy water, and rosaries) or prayers (such as blessings or chaplets) from the Church that can help prepare us to receive God’s grace. Sacramentals are not to be used as Divine Lucky Charms, however! We have to be open to doing God’s will in our lives for them to be effective.
Although people often pray in front of a crucifix in church, you can say the Prayer Before A Crucifix elsewhere, such as at home, using one of many smaller ones available.
St. Augustine called the cross a pulpit from which our Lord taught mankind. Indeed, Christ gave us lessons in faith, hope and charity in fulfilling Divine Justice for our sins by suffering and dying on the cross so that we might have Eternal Life.
Prayer Before A Crucifix
Behold, Oh good and sweetest Jesus,
I cast myself upon my knees in your sight,
and with the most sincere and passionate desire of my soul
I pray and beg you
to impress upon my heart
the deep feeling of faith, hope and charity,
with true repentance for my sins
and a most firm desire to change my life and make amends to people I have wronged:
while with deep affection and grief of soul
I consider within myself and contemplate your five most precious Wounds,
having before my eyes that which David, the prophet,
long ago spoke in your own person concerning you,
my Jesus: “They have pierced My hands and My feet, they have numbered all My bones.”