The other day I posted about special blessings of sacramentals for Epiphany, including the Blessing for Epiphany Water.
As a follow up, since the blessing of Epiphany Water is reserved to bishops and to priests with permission from their bishop, I asked for and obtained said permission and, with the help of a great group of guys, blessed around 25 gallons yesterday, along with a lot of salt and a bunch of chalk.
No myrrh, alas.
Here is one shot.
This was not a scheduled event for the parish. Instead we blended it together with a regular meeting of a men’s group at St. Mary’s in Pine Bluff (D. Madison) where Fr. Heilman reigns supreme. I have written of his before. Just click this tag to be amazed at all the irons this guy has in the fire. HERE. (Get one of his rosaries: see the right side bar.)
Side note: The church is beautiful and well-decorated for the season. Fr. Heilman told me that he showed his people a picture of the sanctuary of St. John Cantius in Chicago as their model for the flowers.
The men’s group in question meets every month to drink beer and smoke pipes and eat a lot of unhealthy food… as one does. The group also heavily overlaps with the parish’s schola cantorum. It was a perfect fit for them to suit up, meet in church, and help with the rite for the Epiphany Water.
It took about 45 minutes for the whole thing. The rite is rather like the singing of a liturgical hour: done in the evening, for example, it includes the Magnificat.
The Rite begins with the Litany of Saints, with a couple special petitions about the blessing of the water to follow. Satan and the fallen demons are then driven from the place with a mighty prayer. I must share it. This is NOT a prayer for lay people to recite. Period. Understand? Just don’t.
Exorcism against Satan and the apostate angels [In Latin, of course. The "+" is where the celebrant makes the Sign of the Cross.]
In the name of our Lord Jesus + Christ and by His power, we cast you out, every unclean spirit, every devilish power, every assault of the infernal adversary, every legion, every diabolical group and sect; begone and stay far from the Church of God, from all who are made in the image of God and redeemed by the precious blood of the divine + Lamb. Never again dare, you cunning serpent, to deceive the human race, to persecute the Church of God, nor to strike the chosen of God and to sift them as + wheat. For it is the Most High God who commands you, + He to whom you heretofore in your great pride considered yourself equal; He who desires that all men might be saved and come to the knowledge of truth. God the Father + commands you. God the Son + commands you. God the Holy + Spirit commands you. The majesty of Christ, the eternal Word of God made flesh + commands you; He who for the salvation of our race, the race that was lost through your envy, humbled Himself and became obedient even unto death; He who built His Church upon a solid rock, and proclaimed that the gates of hell should never prevail against her, and that He would remain with her all days, even to the end of the world. The sacred mystery of the cross + commands you, as well as the power of all the mysteries of Christian faith. The exalted Virgin Mary, Mother of God + commands you, who in her lowliness crushed your proud head from the first moment of her Immaculate Conception. The faith of the holy apostles Peter and Paul and the other apostles + commands you. The blood of the martyrs and the devout intercession of all holy men and women commands you.
Therefore, accursed dragon and every diabolical legion, we adjure you by the living + God, by the true + God, by the holy + God, by the God who so loved the world that He gave His only-begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but shall have life everlasting; cease your deception of the human race and your giving them to drink of the poison of everlasting damnation; desist from harming the Church and fettering her freedom. Begone Satan, you father and teacher of lies and enemy of mankind. Give place to Christ in whom you found none of your works; give place to the one, holy, Catholic, and apostolic Church, which Christ Himself purchased with His blood. May you be brought low under God’s mighty hand. May you tremble and flee as we call upon the holy and awesome name of Jesus, before whom hell quakes, and to whom the virtues, powers, and dominations are subject; whom the cherubim and seraphim praise with unwearied voices, saying: Holy, holy, holy, Lord God of hosts!
The salt and water are exorcised, blessed, blended.
At the end of the rite the Te Deum is sung. Spiffy.
As I wrote in my post the other day, we need for more of this sort of thing, rather than the flabby soft-identity mewlings which are today so prevalent.
This is why we need Summorum Pontificum.