How to Make a Wooden Cross

by Culture & Society Editor

The wooden cross is an enduring symbol that has been claimed by Christianity for two thousand years. It is perhaps most prominent in the human mind as symbolizing the Roman practice of crucifixion, and for centuries has been a symbol of the grave and much used in funeral practices. Making a wooden cross can follow a variety of methods depending on resources and intent.

The primitive funeral cross

Find two pieces of wood. The simple cross is only this - two perpendicular sticks attached to each other. The wood can be flat, like small bits of lumber, or rounded, like two sections of a branch.

Find some rope, twine, string or other binding agent.

See that one stick is somewhat shorter than the other.

Tie the wood together to form three short parts and one longer base.

Fix the cross to a wall or door, or in funeral practice, stake it into the ground.

The crucifix

Get two pieces of wood. The crucifix is usually made from flat, somewhat consistent pieces.

Bind the two pieces together to form three short legs and one longer base. To make a cross that is completely flat, form notches in the pieces of wood that fit together neatly.

Add a figure to the cross. Many crucifixes feature the body of Christ as a reminder of the sacrifice made for humanity.

Add inscriptions. One common inscription is INRI, signifying the Latin Iesus Nazaret Rex Iudeaorum, or 'Jesus Christ, King of the Jews'. Religious inscriptions remind cross carriers of the nature of Christ and the crucifixion and resurrection story.

Fix the cross to a wall or door. Smaller crosses may be carried about to remind Christians of the suffering of Christ.

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