Epiphany House Blessings 2022
10 Houses Blessed!
Many will remember St. Francis’ previous forays into the wild and wonderful world of Epiphany House Blessings in January of 2018 and 2019. We embraced the long-standing Christian tradition of blessing homes on Epiphany, recalling the visitation of the Magi to the Holy Family. This year we want to bless all the homes in the parish to help reconnect in this challenging time. This is a perfect opportunity to invite family and friends as well as neighbors and others who might not have a church home and whose experience of this grace-filled event would be a wonderful introduction to our community of faith. The occasion also offers a special time for good but brief conversation and community building between priest and parishioner. We’d also be delighted to bless the homes of any neighbors who might wish it, so spread the word!
Blessings will be on Epiphany, Thursday January 6th, and on Saturday, January 8th. Please sign-up in advance (via website or list in narthex) to have your house blessed. It will be helpful for planning if you can sign up neighbors in advance, but spur of the moment blessings will be wonderful, too.
The blessings take 5 -15 minutes. Blessings will be scheduled in time windows (Thursday morning, early afternoon, late afternoon, evening; Saturday morning and afternoon – a little bit like the cable guy) in order to fit in as many as we can. Fr. Jack will be posting on Facebook along the way so you can share in the joy of it. If you are away or the timing isn’t right, we can bless your home throughout the Season on Epiphany. Just schedule that with Fr. Jack.
We need drivers in 2-3 hour shifts throughout the time of the blessings. The sign-up forms have spaces to sign-up for that, too.
HOW IT WORKS:
COVID Safety: Fr. Jack and the drivers will be masked at all times. We ask that all participating in the blessings be masked, as well. Your home blessing can be as elaborate or as simple as you’d prefer. You need not feel the burden of planning for a formal ritual – we’ll organize it on the spot as we perform it. It can run as long as 15 minutes or as few as five.
The service begins with family members inscribing the lintel of the home (the horizontal frame above the door) with the inscription shown below in chalk. Chalk will be brought for the door signing, but if you have young children, we’d love to use their chalk if available. The signing may be done on apartment doors as well as single dwellings.
Each person is afforded a turn to make one or more of the marks: 20 + C + M + B + 22
The letters C, M, and B come from the traditional names for the "Three Kings" -- Caspar, Melchior & Balthazar. Some also suggest they stand for "Christus Mansionem Benedicat" which means, "May Christ bless this dwelling!"
The service continues with a simple gathering in the main living area or dining room. We can also bless individual rooms in your home. It is helpful to have a bowl for holding holy water as well as a small (5-8”) evergreen branches for the blessings, but we will have the water and a sprinkling branch in case you cannot provide this.