Welcome: we are here rather than in church because having done extensive market research nobody I asked thought they could summon the energy …. so Welcome and also Blessed New Year to each and all –
and as a new calendar year begins, we pray for one another, far and near, and we pray for St Catherine’s and the communities in which we live and work, and we pray for any and everywhere in the world where prayer is needed. Amen and Amen.
Chalking the Door: A House Blessing
We invite you to adopt this custom in your family. The family gathers to ask God’s blessing on their home and on those who live in or visit the home. It is an invitation for Jesus to be a daily guest in our home, our comings and goings, our conversations, our work and play, our joys and sorrows.
A traditional way of doing this is to use chalk to write above the homes entrance,
20 * C + M + B * 23.
The letters C, M, B have two meanings. They are the initials of the traditional names of the three magi: Caspar and Melchior, and Balthazar. They also abbreviate the Latin words Christus Mansionem Benedicat, ‘may Christ Bless this House’.
The signs between represent the cross.
Blessing the Chalk
Our help is the name of the Lord:
The maker of heaven and earth.
The Lord shall watch over your going out and your coming in:
From this time forth for evermore.
Let us pray.
Loving God, bless this chalk which you have created, that it may be helpful to your people; and grant that through the invocation of your most Holy Name that we who use it in faith to write upon the door of our home the names of your holy ones Caspar and Melchior, and Balthazar, may receive health of body and protection of soul for all who dwell in or visit our home; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Instructions for Blessing the Home
Using the blessed chalk mark the lintel of your front door as follows:
20 * C + M + B * 23 while saying:
The three Wise Men, Caspar and Melchior, and Balthazar followed the star of God’s Son who became human two thousand and fifteen years ago. May Christ bless our home and remain with us throughout the new year. Amen.
Then offer the following prayer: Visit, O blessed Lord, this home with the gladness of your presence. Bless all who live or visit here with the gift of your love; and grant that we may manifest your love to each other and to all whose lives we touch. May we grow in grace and in the knowledge and love of you; guide, comfort, and strengthen us in peace, O Jesus Christ, now and forever. Amen
Chalking the door is a way to celebrate and literally mark the occasion of God’s blessing of our lives and our homes. 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 Latin words, Christus Mansionem Benedictat, “May Christ Bless this House.
Bible Readings –
Isaiah 63.7-9 and Psalm 148 and Hebrews 2.10-18 and Matthew 2.13-23
God our Father
in love you sent your Son that the world may have life:
lead us to seek him among the outcast
and to find him in those in need
for Jesus’ sake. Amen.
if you would like a liturgy then find the link to Morning Worship here.
If you would like some Carols then our virtual choir archive can be found here.