Skip to content

In This Sign You Conquer

by Father Charles M. Mangan

"We adore Thee, O Christ, and we praise Thee, because by Thy holy Cross Thou hast redeemed the world."

The Church prays these words during Lent, especially during the "Via Crucis" (the Stations of the Cross). On today's Feast of the Exaltation of the Cross, the Church also ponders this stirring truth: the Son of God redeemed sinful humanity by way of simple wood.

There are all kinds of crosses. Some are made of stone, others of wood, metal or another substance.

A different kind of "cross" is a difficult condition or circumstance that is often unpleasant for the one involved.

The Cross of Jesus was a wooden cross under which He labored much as He wended His way along the "Via Dolorosa" and on which He died for us once He reached Calvary's hill. That blessed Cross represents the outright rejection the Messiah experienced at the hands of many of the powerful in His day as well as His free and generous surrender to His celestial Father that resulted in our long-awaited--and necessary--reconciliation with the Most Blessed Trinity.

Jesus conquered Satan and his minions--the fallen angels--with His glorious Cross. The Master's obedience to His Father in the Holy Spirit completely turned the tide against "the prince of darkness," who had willingly wrecked so much havoc in the universe through his own rebellion against the Creator and his seductive tempting of our first parents, Adam and Eve.

In 312, the Roman Emperor Constantine I the Great was in Trier, Germany where he had an unexpected vision of a cross that appeared in the sky with the haunting words, "In hoc signum vinces" ("In this sign you conquer"). The Emperor was buoyed by the apparition and encouraged his 20,000 troops for the upcoming bloody battle against Maxentius and his 100,000 men. Constantine's soldiers, the majority of whom were pagans, placed the sacred image of the cross on their shields. The two military forces clashed near the Milvian Bridge over the Tiber River. Maxentius succumbed in the Tiber on October 28, 312, while his fierce legions were soundly routed.

Emperor Constantine decreed in the 313 Edict of Milan that the worship of God performed by the Christians was from henceforth tolerated and that Christianity was the official religion of the Roman Empire. Furthermore, the victorious leader did not seek revenge against his enemies but instead treated them with justice.

Constantine, particularly when facing a huge obstacle, placed his trust in Christ and His triumphant Cross. The lesson is clear: Jesus won over evil. We embrace His Cross when we cheerfully accept the myriad and multiple agonies present in our lives, realizing that when humbly yielded to, these "crosses" help to usher us into the reign of God that has no end.

Our Catholic spirituality is based on the imitation of Christ. Our faith assures us that if we bear His Cross now, one day we will be rewarded in Paradise. Saint Paul wrote almost two thousand years ago: "For if we have been united with Him in a Death like His, we shall certainly be united to Him in a Resurrection like His." (Romans 6:5)

Such "Good News"--that Jesus conquered by His Cross and we are summoned to do likewise--converted Emperor Constantine I the Great. May the same be said of us.


Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life , VA
Monsignor Charles M. Mangan - Official, 390 666161125



Holy Cross

More Catholic PRWire

Showing 1 - 50 of 4,718

A Recession Antidote
Randy Hain

Monaco & The Vatican: Monaco's Grace Kelly Exhibit to Rome--A Review of Monegasque-Holy See Diplomatic History
Dna. Maria St. Catherine Sharpe, t.o.s.m., T.O.SS.T.

The Why of Jesus' Death: A Pauline Perspective
Jerom Paul

A Royal Betrayal: Catholic Monaco Liberalizes Abortion
Dna. Maria St.Catherine De Grace Sharpe, t.o.s.m., T.O.SS.T.

Embrace every moment as sacred time
Mary Regina Morrell

My Dad
JoMarie Grinkiewicz

Letting go is simple wisdom with divine potential
Mary Regina Morrell

Father Lombardi's Address on Catholic Media
Catholic Online

Pope's Words to Pontifical Latin American College
Catholic Online

Prelate: Genetics Needs a Conscience
Catholic Online

State Aid for Catholic Schools: Help or Hindrance?
Catholic Online

Scorsese Planning Movie on Japanese Martyrs
Catholic Online

2 Nuns Kidnapped in Kenya Set Free
Catholic Online

Holy See-Israel Negotiation Moves Forward
Catholic Online

Franchising to Evangelize
Catholic Online

Catholics Decry Anti-Christianity in Israel
Catholic Online

Pope and Gordon Brown Meet About Development Aid
Catholic Online

Pontiff Backs Latin America's Continental Mission
Catholic Online

Cardinal Warns Against Anti-Catholic Education
Catholic Online

Full Circle
Robert Gieb

Three words to a deeper faith
Paul Sposite

Relections for Lent 2009
chris anthony

Wisdom lies beyond the surface of life
Mary Regina Morrell

World Food Program Director on Lent
Catholic Online

Moral Clarity

Pope's Lenten Message for 2009
Catholic Online

A Prayer for Monaco: Remembering the Faith Legacy of Prince Rainier III & Princess Grace and Contemplating the Moral Challenges of Prince Albert II
Dna. Maria St. Catherine Sharpe

Keeping a Lid on Permissiveness
Sally Connolly

Glimpse of Me
Sarah Reinhard

The 3 stages of life
Michele Szekely

Sex and the Married Woman
Cheryl Dickow

A Catholic Woman Returns to the Church
Cheryl Dickow

Modernity & Morality
Dan Shea

Just a Minute
Sarah Reinhard

Catholic identity ... triumphant reemergence!
Hugh McNichol

Edging God Out
Paul Sposite

Burying a St. Joseph Statue
Cheryl Dickow

George Bush Speaks on Papal Visit
Catholic Online

Sometimes moving forward means moving the canoe
Mary Regina Morrell

Action Changes Things: Teaching our Kids about Community Service
Lisa Hendey

Easter... A Way of Life
Paul Spoisite

Papal initiative...peace and harmony!
Hugh McNichol

Proclaim the mysteries of the Resurrection!
Hugh McNichol

Jerusalem Patriarch's Easter Message
Catholic Online

Good Friday Sermon of Father Cantalamessa
Catholic Online

Papal Address at the End of the Way of the Cross
Catholic Online

Cardinal Zen's Meditations for Via Crucis
Catholic Online

Interview With Vatican Aide on Jewish-Catholic Relations
Catholic Online

Pope Benedict XVI On the Easter Triduum
Catholic Online

Holy Saturday...anticipation!
Hugh McNichol

Never Miss any Updates!

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers.

Learn about Catholic world

Catholic Online
Inform - Inspire - Ignite

Catholic Online Saints
Your saints explained

Catholic Online Prayers
Prayers for every need

Catholic Online Bible
Complete bible online

Catholic Online News
Your news Catholic eye

Daily Reading
Today's bible reading

Lent / Easter
Death & resurrection of Jesus

Advent / Christmas
Birth of Jesus

Rest of Catholic Online
All Catholic world we offer

Products and services we offer

Catholic Online Shopping
Catholic medals, gifts & books

The California Network
Inspiring streaming service

Advertise on Catholic Online
Your ads on

Catholic Online Email
Email with Catholic feel

Catholic Online Singles
Safe, secure Catholic dating

The California Studios
World-class post production service

Learn the Catholic way

Catholic Online School
Free Catholic education for all

Student Classes
K-12 & Adult Education Classes

School Teachers
Teacher lesson plans & resources

Support Free Education
Tax deductible support Free education

Connect with us online

Catholic Online on Facebook
Catholic social network

Catholic Online on Twitter
Catholic Tweets

Catholic Online on YouTube
Enjoy our videos

Catholic Online on Instagram
Shared Catholic moments

Catholic Online on Pinterest
Catholic ideas style inspiration

Catholic Online Logo

Copyright 2018 Catholic Online. All materials contained on this site, whether written, audible or visual are the exclusive property of Catholic Online and are protected under U.S. and International copyright laws, © Copyright 2018 Catholic Online. Any unauthorized use, without prior written consent of Catholic Online is strictly forbidden and prohibited.