Question about sacred chrism on my forhead after Confirmation

I was confirmed last night, and I plan on going to Mass again later on today. What do I do about the sacred chrism on my forhead from last night? Since it is holy, I don't want to wash it off unless the Church says it's ok. Do I go on ahead and take a shower, or do I wait?

Sorry if this seems like a stupid question.

I'm surprised there is any left on your forehead. Yes, you may wash it off.

When I was receiving the confirmation, a priest walked after the bishop and wiped out the chrism from the foreheads of those receiving the confirmation.

My advise to my wife who also received confirmation, was to rub it into her skin all over her forehead.

Otherwise even washing it out no sacrilege occurs, the Holy Spirit is in the spirits not in the oil.

yes you can wash it off the next time you would normally wash your face or shower.

Or you could just leave it on or rub it all across the forehead. Olive oil itself is very good for the skin, so there would definitely be no harm in keeping it on.

Back when I was confirmed, the priest must have used a whole tablespoon of oil. It ended up in my hair and all over the steering wheel of my car after Mass and the rest got on my pillow, so I got to smell it for a week after :slight_smile:

:slight_smile: I was confirmed last night…I think he used the whole bottle:D I wiped it on my pillow so I COULD smell it for a week:D

Physically, it's just a mixture of olive oil and balsam, good for the skin, and even better for the scalp! As a matter of fact, balsam oil is a frequent ingredient in hair conditioner, and there is a pretty pricey line of skin care products that have olive oil as their base; they even sell a pure olive oil that is meant for skin moisturizing, and no, you don't smell like a salad after you use it.

If there's still some on your forehead, smear it into your hairline and massage well before you shampoo. But I'm surprised if there is some left, since olive oil is very similar to the composition of the oils your own skin puts out, and absorbs into the top layer of skin readily. And no, it won't clog your pores.

Olive oil is very rich in antioxidants, and helps protect your skin against wrinkling and damage from what is called 'free radicals." Free radicals have been implicated in some skin cancers. I think most people know about olive oil's superior benefits as a nutritional fat (helps boost "good cholesterol" and lowers "bad cholesterol,") plus it is superior for many cooking purposes.

Here's a hint if you want to try regular olive oil as a skin moisturizer: Wash your face, and leave it damp, then massage a few drops of olive oil into your still-moist skin, then towel off.

I suppose the ancient Church fathers intuitively knew how good these oils are, that's why they identified them to be used for the purposes of sacraments.

[quote="TBolt1000T, post:1, topic:237385"]
I was confirmed last night, and I plan on going to Mass again later on today. What do I do about the sacred chrism on my forhead from last night? Since it is holy, I don't want to wash it off unless the Church says it's ok. Do I go on ahead and take a shower, or do I wait?

Sorry if this seems like a stupid question.

[/quote]

Traditionally, the oils, especially the sacred Chrism have been treated with some respect and it is better not to just wash it down the ordinary sink if you can help it. A good thing may be to take a paper towel or cloth, and rub it off, and then burn the paper towel/cloth. Or bury it in a blessed ground (like a cemetery or church).

I was also confirmed on Saturday and Father really went heavy with the chrism. It smelled wonderful but at some point it got in my eyes and hoo, that really hurt. I basically tried to just rub it in although I did use a Kleenex to get it out of the corners of my eyes. I think by the time I took a shower it was all absorbed into my skin already.

none of this is necessary, just wash normally
please don’t make up your own rules and preach them to other people as if they are based on some Church discipline or teaching

I thought that since the oil was blessed, that it needed to be treated like any other blessed object, I.E. not irreverently. There was quite a bit of chrism on my forehead on Saturday night, and I thought I could still feel it on my forhead Easter Sunday morning (I didn't actually reach up and touch it), so I didn't take a shower before I went to Mass yesterday.

I thought that since the oil was blessed, that it needed to be treated like any other blessed object, I.E. not irreverently. There was quite a bit of chrism on my forehead on Saturday night, and I thought I could still feel it on my forhead Easter Sunday morning (I didn’t actually reach up and touch it), so I didn’t take a shower before I went to Mass yesterday.

It’s all absorbed into my skin today, so no worries now. Our pastor must have went a little heavy on it on Saturday night.

[quote="puzzleannie, post:11, topic:237385"]
none of this is necessary, just wash normally
please don't make up your own rules and preach them to other people as if they are based on some Church discipline or teaching

[/quote]

As I pointed out in my post "it is better...if you can help it" based on the traditional practice of the Church, thus showing that it was not prescribed.

Certainly, this is rooted in the traditional discipline - until the 20th century, the practice was there of tying a white cloth or ribbon around the forehead immediately after the anointing and the wording survived in the liturgical books until the late 60s. However, towards the end of the 19th century, it became more customary for an assistant or priest to just wipe the chrism off with a cloth immediately after. These cloths were disposed of in the manner that I suggested above.

I didn't invent the rule out of thin air - the commentators who speak on the disappearance of the rubric in the rite after 1970 regarding the cloth mention that the minister should rub it well into the skin so as to render the cloth unnecessary. This in fact, rarely happens, and in many places the wiping is still done.

Does your priest pour the holy oils, in particular the sacred chrism, down an ordinary drain at the end of the year? If not, why should the oil imposed be any different?

If it is important enough to be consecrated by a bishop, it is certainly important enough to be treated with reverence and not washed down an ordinary drain.

Maybe for the other sacraments, but not for Confirmation. Confirmation is invalid if olive oil is not used, so the Church fathers really had no say in choosing to use it. As for why it must be olive oil and not some other oil, here’s what St. Thomas Aquinas says in the Summa:

Question 72, Article 2, Objection 3. Further, oil is used as the matter of this sacrament for the purpose of anointing. But any oil will do for anointing: for instance, oil made from nuts, and from anything else. Therefore not only olive oil should be used for this sacrament.

Reply to Objection 3. These properties of oil, by reason of which it symbolizes the Holy Ghost, are to be found in olive oil rather than in any other oil. In fact, the olive-tree itself, through being an evergreen, signifies the refreshing and merciful operation of the Holy Ghost.

Moreover, this oil is called oil properly, and is very much in use, wherever it is to be had. And whatever other liquid is so called, derives its name from its likeness to this oil: nor are the latter commonly used, unless it be to supply the want of olive oil. Therefore it is that this oil alone is used for this and certain other sacraments.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.