Vatican City, Apr 10, 2020 / 10:57 am
Through his death on the cross, Jesus has redeemed all human pain, including the suffering caused by the coronavirus pandemic, Fr. Raniero Cantalamessa, OFM Cap., said at the Vatican on Good Friday.
The apostolic preacher said “the cross of Christ has changed the meaning of pain and human suffering -- of every kind of suffering, physical and moral.”
“It is no longer punishment, a curse. It was redeemed at its root when the Son of God took it upon himself,” he said April 10 in St. Peter’s Basilica.
Due to the coronavirus crisis, the solemn celebration took place with only a small congregation. As a precaution, only Pope Francis kissed the crucifix during the adoration of the cross.
Speaking during the liturgy of the Lord’s Passion, celebrated by Pope Francis, Cantalamessa asked: “What is the surest proof that the drink someone offers you is not poisoned? It is if that person drinks from the same cup before you do.”
“This is what God has done: on the cross he drank, in front of the whole world, the cup of pain down to its dregs. This is how he showed us it is not poisoned, but that there is a pearl at the bottom of this chalice,” he stated.
Cantalamessa has been the apostolic preacher, or preacher to the papal household, since 1980.
At the beginning of the liturgy for the Lord’s Passion, Pope Francis lay prostrate on the floor of St. Peter’s Basilica in front of the miraculous crucifix of the Church of San Marcello al Corso.