The "Book of Blessings"


Several priests I know refer to the current USCCB’s authorized “Book of Blessings” as the “Blue Whale.” There is a feeling that the various blessings manage, at the same time, to be too wordy, vague, and with the result that it’s not clear that anything in fact is getting blessed, as most of the prayers in fact lack a specific blessing formula. Is this a widespread concern? And is there any sense that this is being addressed by competent authority?


It’s not the USCCB’s fault. The original De Benedictionibus from which the Book of Blessings is translated, doesn’t actually bless things; just people. As for the wordiness of it, I’ve never had a problem with it; that’s the Christian Latin style that makes the Roman rite distinctive.

To how many people this is concerning to, I cannot say. I do know that under Pope John Paul II there was some interest in revising the Latin, but for one reason or another it didn’t come to fruition.


Do you ever read Father Z’s blog?
He had a post today that described the various Epiphany blessings, adn what many of us are missing out on. I believe he described the Book of Blessings as “dreadful” (his opinion only - - I really don’t know it).


My former pastor showed me his copy of the “Book of Blessings” and it had a blessing for a fishing boat!

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