Welcome to our latest video tour of the Basilica of the Holy Cross in Jerusalem! In this video, we take you on a journey through the chapel of the relics, where the most important and symbolic relics of the passion of Jesus Christ are kept.
For centuries, the popes would walk barefoot to pay homage to these relics on Good Friday, and today, people from all over the world come to kneel and pray in front of them.
In the small chapel of the relics, you can find the precious reliquaries that house the holy relics, including a fragment of the true cross on which Jesus was condemned to death. You can also see two thorns from the crown placed on Christ's head, a nail used for Jesus' crucifixion, fragments from the grotto of the nativity and the holy sepulchre, and the phalanx of Saint Thomas's finger.
In addition, you can see the titulus crucis, the tablet written in Hebrew, Greek, and Latin characters placed on the cross of Jesus, which states the reason for his death sentence. This tablet was found in the 15th century walled up inside the abscidal arch of the basilica.
The frescoes in the apse of the basilica tell the story of the legend of the true cross, starting with Saint Helena's search for the cross in Jerusalem and ending with her division of the cross into three parts.
While we can never be certain that these relics are genuine, they are incredibly symbolic and important in the devotion to the tomb that lay empty 2,000 years ago. Join us on this special Vatican tour and explore the history and significance of these relics for yourself.