Tuesday, January 6


Epiphany Blessings

From the 1964 Roman Ritual. The last version published before the interim reforms (I believe in 1952) is substantially similar, save for a few translational tics. The original Latin versions for the 1962 form can be all found here. There is also a lengthy blessing for a special species of holy water on the eve of the Epiphany I may post at another time.


P: Our help is in the name of the Lord.
All: Who made heaven and earth.
P: The Lord be with you.
All: May He also be with you.Let us pray.

Accept, holy Father, from me, your unworthy servant, these gifts which I humbly offer to the honor of your holy name and in recognition of your peerless majesty, as you once accepted the sacrifice of the just Abel and the same kind of gifts from the three Magi.

God's creatures, gold, incense, and myrrh, I cast out the demon from you by the Father + almighty, by Jesus + Christ, His only-begotten Son, and by the Holy + Spirit, the Advocate, so that you may be freed from all deceit, evil, and cunning of the devil, and become a saving remedy to mankind against the snares of the enemy. May those who use you, with confidence in the divine power, in their lodgings, homes, or on their persons, be delivered from all perils to body and soul, and enjoy all good things. We ask this through the power and merits of our Lord and Savior, the intercession of the blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God, and of all the saints, in particular the godly men who on this day venerated Christ the Lord with the very same gifts.
All: Amen.

God, the invisible and endless One, in the holy and awesome name of your Son, be pleased to endow with your blessing + and power these creatures of gold, incense, and myrrh. Protect those who will have them in their possession from every kind of illness, injury, and danger, anything that would interfere with the well- being of body and soul, and so be enabled to serve you joyously and confidently in your Church; you who live and reign in perfect Trinity, God, forever and ever.
All: Amen.

And may the blessing of almighty God, Father, + Son, and Holy + Spirit, come upon these creatures of gold, incense, and myrrh, and remain always.
All: Amen.

They are sprinkled with holy water.


P: Our help is in the name of the Lord.
All: Who made heaven and earth.
P: The Lord be with you.
All: May He also be with you.
Bless, + O Lord God, this creature, chalk, and let it be a help to mankind. Grant that those who will use it with faith in your most holy name, and with it inscribe on the doors of their homes the names of your saints, Casper, Melchior, and Baltassar, may through their merits and intercession enjoy health in body and protection of soul; through Christ our Lord. All: Amen.

It is sprinkled with holy water.

[The chalk is then used to inscribe the year and the initials of the three Magi, on the lintel of your home, in this fashion: 20+C+M+B+09. The C+M+B may also stand for Christus Mansionem Benedicat as well as Caspar, Melchior et Balthazar. I did this Sunday evening, but as white chalk on beige millwork doesn't stand out very well, I refer you to Fallen Sparrow, whose black wooden front door picks up the chalk far nicer than mine does.]


As the priest comes into the home he says:

P: God's peace be in this home.
All: And in all who live here.
P. Ant.: Magi from the East came to Bethlehem to adore the Lord; and opening their treasure chests they presented Him with precious gifts: gold for the great King, incense for the true God, and myrrh in symbol of His burial. Alleluia.

Then, priest and people recite the Canticle of the Magnificat (Luke 1.46-55) antiphonally, concluding with the Gloria Patri. Meanwhile the home is sprinkled with holy water and incensed. At the end of the Magnificat the antiphon is repeated.

Then the priest says Our Father (the rest inaudibly until:)
P: And lead us not into temptation.
All: But deliver us from evil.

[This was once the custom in nearly all liturgical rites outside of the Mass, a precious relic of the days when the words of the Our Father was imparted in the post-baptismal mystagogy, and considered too sacred to be said aloud outside the Mass of the Faithful, lest it be heard by heathen ears.]

P: Many shall come from Saba.
All: Bearing gold and incense.
P: Lord, heed my prayer.
All: And let my cry be heard by you.
P: The Lord be with you.
All: May he also be with you.Let us pray.

God, who on this day revealed your only-begotten Son to all nations by the guidance of a star, grant that we who now know you by faith may finally behold you in your heavenly majesty; through Christ our Lord.
All: Amen.

Responsory: Be enlightened and shine forth, O Jerusalem, for your light is come; and upon you is risen the glory of the Lord Jesus Christ born of the Virgin Mary.
P: Nations shall walk in your light, and kings in the splendor of- your birth.
All: And the glory of the Lord is risen upon you.Let us pray.

Lord God almighty, bless + this home, and under its shelter let there be health, chastity, self-conquest, humility, goodness, mildness, obedience to your commandments, and thanksgiving to God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. May your blessing remain always in this home and on those who live here; through Christ our Lord.
All: Amen.

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