Wednesday, January 4, 2012
Blessing of Epiphany Chalk

Note: You can download the below blessing in Microsoft Word .doc format here: Blessing of the Home on the Feast of the Epiphany (1 page).

20+G+M+B+12
(20+Gaspar+Melchior+Balthazar+12)


Information on the Blessing and Simple Blessing
 
Chalk is customarily blessed on January 6, the feast of the Epiphany (though nowadays typically only done by more traditional parishes). The chalk is a sacramental, intended for the blessings of homes. If a priest is unable to visit your home at this season, a simple blessing may be given by the father of the family. He should mark the year and the initials of the three Magi (Gaspar, Melchoir and Balthasar) on the lintel of the main door. The prayer for blessing a home is recommended at this time, as printed below.

Write with blessed chalk above the door like so:

20 + G + M + B + 12

O Lord, almighty God, bless this house that it may become a shelter of health, chastity, self-conquest, humility. goodness, mildness, obedience to the Commandments, and thanksgiving to God, Father, Son and Holy Ghost. Upon this house and those who dwell herein may Thy blessing remain forever. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.




Fr. Z from WDTPRS
 


The Ceremony of the Blessing


Epiphany Chalk is used to write the inscription over all the doors of one’s house. Soft classroom chalk of any color is best for writing on varnished or painted surfaces. A priest should bless the chalk on Epiphany Day, before the celebration of the main Mass of the day, using the following Blessing, which is taken from the Roman Ritual:

V. Our help is in the Name of the Lord.

R. Who made heaven and earth.

V. The Lord be with you.

R. And with thy spirit.

Let Us Pray:

O Lord God, bless + this chalk which Thou hast created, that it may be helpful to mankind; and grant that through the invocation of Thy most holy Name all those who use this chalk or with it write over the doors of their houses the names of Thy Saints, Gasper, Melchior, and Balthazar, may by their merits and intercession receive health of body and protection of soul. Through Christ Our Lord. Amen. (Priest now sprinkles chalk with Holy Water.)

Later that day – or any day within the Octave of the Feast of the Epiphany – at home, the ceremony is completed by a priest, or the father, or senior member, of the family. The following prayer is said once and at the main entrance of the house. All the family as he or she goes from door to door – everyone keeping a respectful silence, or better yet, reciting the Joyful Mysteries of the Rosary.

Let Us Pray:

Hear us, O Holy Lord, Father Almighty, Eternal God, and send Thy Holy Angel from Heaven to watch over, cherish, protect, be with, and defend all who live in my house. I call upon Your Saints, Gasper, Melchior, and Balthazar, to protect my family and my home from every harm and danger, and I place the marks of their holy names over the doors of my home to remain there as a constant reminder to us and to all who enter here that my house is truly a house of the Lord.

O God, make the door of my house wide enough to receive all who need human love and companionship; narrow enough to shut out all envy, pride, and strife. Make its threshold smooth enough to be no stumbling clock to children, nor to straying feet, but rugged and strong enough to turn back the temper’s power.

O God, make the door of my house the gateway to Thy eternal Kingdom. I ask these things in the Name of Jesus Christ Thy Son. Amen.

Note: Another version of this blessing, as well as a Blessing of Gold, Incense, & Myrrh (the gifts given by the wisemen) can be found in the Rituale Romanum online version.

6 comments:

January 11, 2013 at 1:31 AM
Anonymous said...

My mother did this in our home every year when I was a child. Only recently was that memory stirred, and I felt compelled to look into it. When I asked other Catholics if they had ever done/seen this, the answer was always 'no.' I would like to thank you for this posting. Using this, I hope to carry on my mother's tradition in my own home.
Thank you again, and God Bless.

February 21, 2013 at 10:18 PM
Unknown said...

Thank you for posting this information. A friend of mine had told me of this ritual a few years ago, in response to a cleansing of his home (an attachment of some sort to a baby bed they had purchased). But I was not aware of the formal prayer. Does anointing oil also serve, instead of chalk ?

March 27, 2013 at 9:39 AM
Anonymous said...

Have you done blessing with myrr and frankenscence to keep evil out of your home. If so what prayer should I pray .

June 4, 2014 at 11:49 AM
Anonymous said...

THIS WEB SITE DENOTES THE THREE WISEMAN'S NAMES AS "Gaspar, Melchoir and Balthasar"....I WAS REARED THAT ONE OF THE WISEMAN'S NAME WAS CASPAR NOT GASPAR....ANOTHER WEBSITE DOES DENOTE "CASPER"..WHICH IS IT?

June 4, 2014 at 12:20 PM
Matthew said...

Gasper and Casper are two English translations of the same ancient name.

August 18, 2014 at 9:24 AM
Anonymous said...

Also C M B means CHRISTUS MANSIONEM BENEDICAT or Christ Bless this House.

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