Epiphany is one of the Church’s major feasts of the liturgical year, the peak of the Christmas season, and as such is accompanied by very special and beautiful blessings in celebration of this solemnity, namely, the making of Epiphany water and the chalking of doorways.
Because Epiphany is closely associated with the Baptism of Jesus, where the Son of God sanctified the earth’s waters making them fit for the Sacrament of Baptism (this is more evident in the liturgy of the East than the West, which places more emphasis on the Magi and their gifts) there is a special blessing for water that is used only during this feast.
Epiphany water, with its long and exacting prayers of exorcism, renders it more spiritually powerful than the prayers belonging to ‘regular’ holy water. (In the Eastern rites of the Catholic Church, where the blessing originates, this is also the feast of Our Lord’s baptism; and the baptismal waters are the means by which God has ordained to remove from our souls the stain of original sin, bringing us out of the kingdom of Satan and into the Kingdom of God.
To celebrate Epiphany—the manifestation of Jesus as the Son of God and the Light of the World—there exists an ancient custom of the faithful having their homes and buildings blessed with Epiphany water, and the entryways chalked with a ‘holy formula’ which consists of the current New Year along with the initials C, M, B, which are the initials of the Magi as well as the initials of the invocation Christus Mansionem Benedicat (Christ bless this house). This marks their homes and buildings, and all that belongs to them, under the dominion of the newborn Christ the King.
We at The Catholic Company requested Fr. Jason Barone of the Diocese of Charlotte (our hometown) to bless our Catholic gift warehouse, office spaces, and workstations (where we fulfill and ship out CatholicCompany.com orders) during the Epiphany octave (that is, on one of the eight days of the feast). He graciously obliged! And we are very grateful.
Having Father walk down the halls of our building, sprinkling Epiphany water and offering prayers for us, was a great grace! The physical places where we work have now been sanctified with water blessed by Holy Mother Church, which is a comfort as we offer all that we have to the glory of God!
Watch the video below: