Lesson 29: Blue Bricks in a Red Wall

Suffered under Pontius Pilate, Was crucified, dead, and buried.

If you live in Yorkton Street (as many of “the best people" do), or in Tuilerie Street (naturally pronounced Too-ler-ee by some of the other best people who live there), you pass, on your way home from Scawfell Street School, St. Saviour’s Priory, where the Sisters live. In its red brick wall in Dunloe Street are blue bricks in the pattern of the Sisters' badge, the Cross standing on the World.

Our Lord came to this world, both to show us what God is like, and to redeem us, to open again the door to heaven closed by man’s sin.

“There was no other good enough,
To pay the price of sin;
He only could unlock the gate
Of heaven, and let us in."

He could only do this by suffering willingly the most terrible pains of body and mind (St. Matthew 26, 38; St. Luke 22, 44; St. Matthew 27, 26 and 29); by being crucified for six hours; by dying on the cross. Man brought sin into the world; only man could redeem the world, redeem it, “pay the price of sin."

We think especially of our Lord’s sufferings in Lent (the forty days when we try to be extra sorry for our sins): its last two weeks are Passion (“suffering”) Week and Holy Week.

Good Friday, the day on which he died, is for all us Christians the most solemn day in the year.

But never, even at the happiest times in the year, do we forget the cross that saved the world. Always in St. Augustine’s the rood (old English, “cross”) looks down on us as we worship. A crucifix is on every altar. On the priest’s vestments as he says Mass is the cross. Its holy sign is made on every baby’s forehead in baptism; often we make it on ourselves. Round the church hang on the walls the fourteen Stations of the Cross, pictures of what happened on Good Friday.

The blue bricks are never taken out of the red wall.

“Under Pontius Pilate,” when he was Roman Governor of Judaea in Palestine, our Lord, in his manhood thirty-three years old, made the cross the glorious badge, not only of the Priory Sisters, but also of every Christian.