The Marking of the Houses with Blessed Chalk at the Feast of the Epiphany

epiphanychalk

We encourage the people to take some of the chalk blessed at Epiphany and to gather at the door of their homes with  family and friends and say the words at the bottom to bless their homes for the coming year.

 The tradition is that the wise men travel back after Epiphany and travel past our homes. These chalk prayers indicate a place where Christian hospitality might be afforded them, and seek blessing on the house. It is also a useful act of witness when people say “what’s that chalk above your door?”

Word of Blessing

O Lord God, +bless this chalk that it may be used for the salvation of the human race.

Through the invocation of your most Holy Name grant that whoever takes this chalk and writes with it upon the doors of their house the names of your saints, Kaspar, Melchior and Balthasar, may through their merits and intercession receive health of body and protection of soul.

Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

What to pray at your home

The lintel of the main door of the house (and other doors if desired) is marked by a senior member of the household in the following way:

 20 + C + M + B + <year> (ie 13)

whilst saying the following prayer:

The three Wise Men WRITE THIS
Caspar C
Melchior M
and Balthazar B
followed the star of God’s Son who became man  
Two Thousand 20
and thirteen years ago. 13
May Christ bless our home ++
and remain with us through the new year ++

If others are present, you may continue:

Almighty God, incline your ear.
Bless us and all who are gathered here.
Send your holy angel
who will defend us and fill with grace
all who dwell here. Amen.

The C M B also stands for  Christus mansionem benedicat: May God bless this house

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