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Bible Encyclopedias

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature

Consecration Cross

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According to the directions of the ancient Western Pontificals, twelve crosses should either be sculptured or painted in different parts of a new church. Generally, they are found inside; but sometimes (as at Uffington Church, in Berkshire) outside the sacred edifice. Occasionally a recessed stone quatrefoil is charged with a floriated brass cross; but ordinarily consecration crosses are painted either on the walls or pillars. An example of a painted cross may be found under the word BRANCH (See BRANCH) ; another specimen of a consecration cross sculptured within a circle is given from the old cathedral church of Brechin, in Scotland. In the act of consecrating a church, a Catholic bishop anoints the twelve crosses with holy chrism, "in the name of the Blessed Trinity, to the honor of God and of the glorious Virgin Mary and of all saints," and specially of the saint whose name the church is to bear. Then the crosses are incensed. A branch for a taper is usually placed opposite each consecration cross, and the taper is lighted during the service of consecration; as also. in some places, on the anniversary of that ceremony.

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Bibliography Information
McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Consecration Cross'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.

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