I was wondering if anyone knows if there is any teaching by either the Church or an early Church father that says whether or not there is a substantial and supernatural change to the water of baptism or to holy water. In other words, does the Holy Spirit affect a supernatural change in the water as well as in the person or only in the person that is baptized or sprinkled with the water?
The following are quotes which compare the baptismal font to the womb of the Virgin Mary. So, this is why I’m wondering if there is any supernatural change to the water itself. I realize that perhaps the Church is silent on this question.
“…the bath in the fountain of baptismal waters, the holy womb of Mother Church…” - The Roman Ritual
“…the mysteries of Christ, which the Church, our virgin mother, celebrates in the sacraments of Christian initiation, were “accomplished” in Mary, the Virgin Mother: the Spirit who sanctifies the womb of the Church, that is, the font of baptism - to bring forth children of God, sanctified Mary’s womb so that she might bring forth the firstborn of many brothers and sisters (see Hebrews 2:11-15)…” - Collection of Masses of the Blessed Virgin Mary
“From the Christological reason for remembering the Virgin in the baptismal profession, we come to the ecclesial dimension of her commemoration in the celebration of Baptism: Mary is the icon of the Church, virgin and mother, who, by the power of the Spirit, brings Christ to new birth in the faithful. This is what the inscription in the baptistry of St John in the Lateran says: «At this font, the Church, our mother, gives birth from her virginal womb to the children she conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit»” - Mary, an Icon of the Church that Baptizes in Jesus Christ
“Now having said that all of you are brothers of Christ, shall I not dare to call you his mother? Much less would I dare to deny his own words. Tell me how Mary became the mother of Christ, if it was not by giving birth to the members of Christ? You, to whom I am speaking, are the members of Christ. Of whom were you born? “Of Mother Church”, I hear the reply of your hearts. You became sons of this mother at your baptism, you came to birth then as members of Christ. Now you in your turn must draw to the font of baptism as many as you possibly can. You became sons when you were born there yourselves, and now by bringing others to birth in the same way, you have it in your power to become the mothers of Christ.” - The Virgin Mary, the Church and Evangelization - St. St. Augustine of Hippo
“Among such references we like to recall that of our illustrious predecessor, Saint Leo the Great, who in a Christmas homily says: ‘The origin which [Christ] took in the womb of the Virgin He has given to the baptismal font: He has given to water what He had given to His Mother—the power of the Most High and the overshadowing of the Holy Spirit (cf. Lk. 1:35), which was responsible for Mary’s bringing forth the Savior, has the same effect, so that water may regenerate the believer.’” - Marialis Cultus - Pope Paul VI