Blessing of chalk

Happy day of the Epiphany!

Can someone care to explain the tradition of blessing chalk on the day of the Epiphany? Are there any more traditions many of us are missing out, like this one? I only knew about this one today, even went to a Mass and received chalk, and drew the 20 + C + M + B + 16 on the top of my apartment door.


There’s a slightly longer rite for using the chalk, incense, and Epiphany water once you get home, which we used yesterday after Mass.

There are many nice traditions for various feast days throughout the year. One I particularly like is blessing wine and drinking “the love of St. John” on the apostle’s feast day on December 27. Wine is blessed at home, asking that all who drink it be protected and blessed, freed from sickness, poisoning, or any other infirmity. Then as the leader passes the wine to someone else, he says, “I drink thee the love of St. John.” The response is, "I thank thee for the love of St. John. This goes around the table until all present have toasted and had a drink.

This goes back to the tradition that St. John the Apostle was once served a cup of poisoned wine, but survived after having blessed it.

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