Let’s examine sacramentals that truly impact our daily lives. In the course of going through various sacramentals, we will also look into practical ways on how to best utilize them.
1) Blessed Salt
If you wish, it is nice to have a small container of blessed salt in your home. You would have to ask your parish priest to make that available for you and odds are likely that your parish priest would not be familiar with it. This is one sacramental that fell by the wayside after Vatican II and is not used very often in current parishes. Moreover, it is a powerful weapon against evil as can be seen by the prayer we examined last week.
2) Blessed Candles
Another great sacramental to have in the home is a blessed candle. Traditionally, homes would have at least one blessed candle and it was typically used as a source of hope and protection during a storm. Priests would bless candles on the feast day of “Candlemas,”which is on February 2, the feast of the Purification of the Blessed Virgin Mary. It is also known as the feast of the Presentation and is when Joseph and Mary presented Jesus in the Temple. The blessing of candles come into play in recalling of what the prophet Simeon said to Mary and Joseph in the Temple when they presented Jesus:
“Now dismiss Thy servant, O Lord, In peace, according to Thy word: For mine own eyes hath seen Thy salvation, Which Thou hast prepared in the sight of all the peoples, A light to reveal Thee to the nations And the glory of Thy people Israel.”(Luke 2:29-32)
The theme of “light” is present throughout his “canticle” and so candles remind us of the “light of Christ” that removes the darkness of sin and death.
3) Crucifix in every room
A tremendous sacramental that should be in all of our homes is the crucifix. Not only does a crucifix remind us of the great love that God had for us, but it also is a strong deterrent to spiritual enemies. The crucifix is the bane of satan’s existence and is the sign of everything that he despises. It is wonderful to have a crucifix in every room in your house (or apartment) so that you can always meditate on Jesus’ great sacrifice of love as well as have an image to always remember what you need to put your mind on during times of temptation.
Here are two prayers for blessing a crucifix which sum-up all the reasons we need them in our homes:
Holy Lord, almighty Father, everlasting God, be pleased to bless + this cross, that it may be a saving help to mankind. Let it be the support of faith, an encouragement to good works, the redemption of souls; and let it be consolation, protection, and a shield against the cruel darts of the enemy; through Christ our Lord.
Lord Jesus Christ, bless + this cross by which you snatched the world from Satan’s hold, and on which you overcame by your suffering the tempter to sin, who rejoiced in the first man’s fall in eating of the forbidden tree. Here it is sprinkled with holy water. May this cross be hallowed in the name of the Father, + and of the Son, + and of the Holy + Spirit; and may all who kneel and pray before this cross in honor of our Lord find health in body and soul; through Christ our Lord.
4) Enthronement to the Sacred Heart
The last sacramental that I will discuss about is on the formal “Enthronement to the Sacred Heart.” This means not just placing an image of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in your home, but is a full process of consecration to the Heart of Jesus. It is the same with the Total Consecration to Jesus through Mary, but is particular to a “home” or “family.” It places Jesus at the center of our lives and hearts. Here is a brief guide to this “enthronement”. Rather, Cardinal Raymond Burke has a great resource that you can purchase through the Marian Catechists.