Sunday, June 9, 2013



....Have you you only that one blessing, father? Bless me too! (Genesis 27:38) 

I recently found an old prayer pamphlet entitled "Bless Your Children" by Archabbot Ignatius. He describes the beautiful custom of the parental blessing. CLICK HERE to view the entire pamphlet. Here is an excerpt:

...Everything growing from the earth, bless the Lord.
(Daniel 3:76)
Photo: R. Massaro (c)2013SpiritSinging

How to give the blessing
How is the parental blessing given?  It should be done in a simple but reverent manner. Place your hand on the head of the kneeling child. Say: " Bless you, my child, in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit." While saying this, make the sign of the Cross upon his or her forehead with the thumb of your right hand. If you bless all your children at once, simply extend your right hand over them all, and trace a Cross over them, while you pronounce the words.

The children may be in any position for the blessing, though kneeling is naturally more significant. The blessing need not be solemn, but it should be serious.

I hope young parents will welcome this happy privilege. I hope that the proud young father and the grateful young mother will lay hands of blessing upon their precious baby and continue the custom throughout their lives.

And what of the older families, where through ignorance of this sacramental custom,t he parental blessing has never been given? Older parents rather reluctantly make a change in their family life. But they will not refuse their blessing if their grown-up sons and daughters ask for it. Nor ought children hesitate in asking for a gift that surpasses all natural gifts that parents can give. Hopefully, some of these parent will offer a blessing to their children at leas on the major events of their lives.

Good fathers and mothers endure labor, fatigue, and pain to give their children natural gifts, life and life's necessities. Generously add to these bestowals the crowning gift-your blessing. It will help to sanctify all the rest.

St. Ambrose says: "You may not be rich, you may be unable to bequeath any great possessions to your childen; but one thing you can give them: the heritage of your blessing. And it is better to be blessed than to be rich." May God doubly bless the parents who bless their children.

The Priestly Blessing of Moses (Genesis 6:22-26):

This is how you shall bless the Israelites. Say to them:

The Lord bless you and keep you!
The Lord let his face shine upon you, and be gracious to you!
The Lord look upon you kindly and give you peace!

Peace be with you!
Rosemarie, ocds

No comments: