Epiphany House Blessing

Blessing of the Home during Epiphany:

Our Priests will again this year, bless homes and with chalk, writing above the home’s entrance, 20 + C + M + B + 18.

The letters C, M, B have two meanings. They are the initials of the traditional names of the three magi: Caspar, Melchior, and Balthazar.

They also abbreviate the Latin words Christus mansionem benedicat, “May Christ bless the house.” The “+” signs represent the cross and 2018 is the year.

This is a beautiful Epiphany tradition which we will continue beginning at our monastery this Saturday morning, as we bless chalk and scrawl over the door of the Monastery at the start of Mass, carrying forth an ancient custom practiced in many homes around the world.

WHAT HAPPENS: 

The Priest asks God’s blessing on the home and on those who live in the home. It is an invitation for Jesus to be a daily guest in your home, on your comings and goings, your conversations, your work and entertainment, your joys and your sorrows.

A traditional way of doing this is, the Priest blesses the home then uses chalk to write above the home’s entrance, 20 + C + M + B + 16. The letters C, M, B have two meanings. They are the initials of the traditional names of the three magi: Caspar, Melchior, and Balthazar. They also abbreviate the Latin words Christus mansionem benedicat, “May Christ bless this house.” The “+” signs represent the cross and 2018 is the year.

“Chalking the door” is a way to celebrate and literally mark the occasion of Epiphany and God’s blessing of our lives and home. With time the chalk will fade. As it does we let the meaning of the symbols written sink into the depths of our heart and be manifest in our words and actions the words, “May Christ bless the house.”