Beautiful dogwood trees are blooming this time of the year. Some are covered with white blossoms and some with pink. The tree blooms in spring about Easter time when the Christian world turns to thoughts centered on the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus. A poignant legend links the pretty blooming tree with the crucifixion of Jesus.
At the time of the crucifixion, the dogwood had reached the size of a mighty oak tree. The wood was strong and firm, so it was chosen as timber for Jesus’ cross.
To be used for such a cruel purpose greatly distressed the dogwood. While nailed upon the tree, Jesus sensed this, and in his compassion said. “Because of your pity for my suffering, never again shall the dogwood tree grow large enough to be used for a cross. Henceforth, it shall be slender, bent, and twisted, and its blossoms shall be in the form of a cross–two long and two short petals.”
In the center of the outer edge on each petal is the print of nails. In the center of the flower, stained with blood, is a crown of thorns, so that all who see it will remember.