COMMEMORATION OF THE APPEARANCE OF THE HONORABLE CROSS OVER JERUSALEM
During the reign of Emperor Constantius, the son of St. Constantine, and Cyril the Patriarch of Jerusalem, the Honorable Cross appeared about 9:00 a.m. stretching out from Golgotha to above the Mount of Olives. This cross was brighter than the sun and more beautiful than the most beautiful rainbow. All the people, both believing and unbelieving, left their work and, in fear and amazement, observed this heavenly sign.
Many unbelievers converted to the Faith of Christ, and so also did many Arian heretics abandon their evil heresy and returned to Orthodoxy. About this sign Patriarch Cyril wrote a letter to Emperor Constantius [337-361 A.D.] who leaned toward Arianism. This occurred on May 7, 357 A.D. Thus, even on this occasion it was demonstrated that the Christian Faith is not worldly theorizing, according to sensual understanding of man, but rather in God's power, demonstrated through numerous miracles and signs.
"On the nones [or 7th] of May, about the third hour [or nine in the morning], a vast luminous body, in the form of a Cross, appeared in the heavens, just over the holy Golgotha, reaching as far as the holy Mount of Olives [that is, almost two miles in length], seen not by one or two persons, but clearly and evidently by the whole city. This was not, as may be thought, a momentary transient phenomenon: for it continued several hours visible to our eyes, and brighter than the sun, the light of which would have eclipsed it, had not this been stronger. The whole city, struck with a reverential fear, tempered with joy, ran immediately to the church, young and old, Christians and heathens, citizens and strangers, all with one voice giving praise to our Lord Jesus Christ, the only Son of God, the worker of miracles; finding by experience the truth of the Christian doctrine, to which the heavens bear witness." (PG 33:1 16q)