Monday, January 9, 2017

Epiphany - Chalking The Door

Chalking the door is a tradition that I had never heard about until this year.  The wonders of social media introduced me to this.  Here is an explanation (with the year adjusted for 2017) of what this is all about from the website One Peter Five: "Epiphany marks the occasion of a time-honored Christian tradition of “chalking the doors.” Take chalk of any color and write the following above the entrance of your home: 20 + C+M + B + 17.  The letters have two meanings. First, they represent the initials of the Magi - Caspar, Malchior, and Balthazar - who came to visit Jesus in His first home. They also abbreviate the Latin phrase, Christus mansionem benedicat: “May Christ bless the house.” The “+” signs represent the cross, and the “20” at the beginning and the “17” at the end mark the year. Taken together, this inscription is performed as a request that Christ to bless those homes so marked that he stay with those who dwell therein throughout the entire year."

"Practicing traditions like the chalking of the doors helps us to live our Faith more concretely and serve as an outward sign of our dedication to Our Lord. Our homes are also the place where many of us will make the greatest strides in our spiritual growth, through observance of daily prayer, spiritual reading, and work offered as an oblation to God.  The chalking of the doors of a home encourages Christians to dedicate their life at home to God and to others. Seeing the symbols over our doors can help to remind us, while passing in and out on our daily routines, that our homes and all those who dwell there belong to Christ. It also serves as a reminder of welcoming the Magi gave to Jesus. We should strive to be as welcoming to all who come to our homes to visit us!"

So, this year we decided to do this.  After this Sunday's Mass, we came home, got the chalk, our bottle of Holy Water, and a printed-our prayer.  I lit a "Jesus, Mary, Joseph" stick of incense, and we went outside to our front porch and chalked the door.  Paul held Tyler up on his shoulder so Tyler could chalk the door.  We said the prayers and sprinkled some Holy Water.  I like this ritual!

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