We’ve all heard the stats…humans are about 60% water (babies at birth are about 78% water, adult women about 55-60% and adult men about 60-65%) and the earth is about 71% water. Water can kill, or sustain life. The church has acknowledged the obvious importance of water and uses it to manifest the cleansing, grave, vital and sustaining reality of the Church and Christ.
At the blessing of the Jordan water on Theophany, the priest asks our Lord to make the blessed water “a source of incorruption, a gift of sanctification, a deliverance from sins, an averting of diseases, unapproachable by hostile powers, filled with angelic strength. That all who draw from it and partake of it may have it for cleansing of souls and bodies, for healing of passions, for sanctification of homes, for every suitable purpose”.
So it’s important to acknowledge this great gift by actually using the water. Too many of us put the Jordan water we bring home in our icon corner and never touch it again. One beautiful tradition is to have a sip (or just a drip off an immersed finger tip) first thing in the morning so that holy water is the first thing we consume each day. We can also use it to trace a sign of the cross on our children, phones, steering wheel, front door, tv, pillow, gifts, and on our children’s media devices, backpacks, seats at table, and beds.
And there is even a traditional prayer to say before having that sip of holy water in the morning:
O Lord, my God, may I receive your holy water for the remission of my sins, the enlightenment of my mind, the strengthening of my soul and body, and the conquering fo my passions and infirmities, according to your mercy that has no bounds, and through the prayers of your most pure Mother and all the saints. Amen.
Wednesday, January 5 –