On Good Friday, April 19 (Today), all the parishes around the world will celebrate the Liturgy of the Lord’s Passion, which includes a reading of a Gospel account of the Passion of Christ, Holy Communion and veneration of the Cross.
So coming to the Veneration of the Cross, Why do Catholics do that?
During the seventh century, the Roman Church adopted the practice of Adoration of the Cross from the Church in Jerusalem, where a fragment of wood which is believed to be the Lord’s cross had been venerated every year on Good Friday since the fourth century.
Traditionally, a part of the Holy Cross was discovered by St. Helen, the mother of the emperor Constantine on a pilgrimage to Jerusalem in 326. A coffer of gold-plated silver which contains the wood of the Cross was brought forward.
The bishop placed the relic on a table in the chapel of the Crucifixion and the faithful went closer to it, touching brow, eyes and lips to the wood as the priest said (and as every priest has done ever since): ‘Behold, the Wood of the Cross.’
The adoration or veneration of an image or anything that represents the Cross of Christ does not actually mean that we adore the material image.
As we kneel before the crucifix and kiss it, we are not adoring the material image rather, we are paying the highest honor to the Cross of Our Lord as the instrument of our salvation.
Because the Cross of Jesus is inseparable from His sacrifice, as we reverence His Cross we, in effect, adore Christ.
Therefore, we proclaim: ‘We adore You, O Christ, and we bless You because by Your Holy Cross You have Redeemed the World.’