ASK FATHER: Lay people using the Rituale Romanum to bless things

Posted August 3, 2017 5:28 pm by Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

ASK FATHER: Lay people using the Rituale Romanum to bless things

From a reader…
QUAERITUR:
In a fairly popular book about celebrating the liturgical year at home, The Year and Our Children, the author recommends purchasing “the Ritual, that slim black book the priest carries about when he gives the blessings.” She goes on to explain how her family “blessed” their own herbs. Can you tell me if laypersons can bless objects and if so, under what conditions? Thank you!
NO!
Lay people should not do anything like that, especially involving making the sign of the Cross over anything, as if they were ordained priests.
NO! I say, and again I say NO!
Take things to the priest to bless.
Ask Father to come to bless things.
This is not DIY, people.
If you are not a priest, don’t do these things.  Don’t use the Rituale for anything, especially if there is something to do with exorcisms.   You do NOT want to get into it with the Enemy when you don’t have the grace of ordained priesthood and the authority and power that comes with it.
There is no reason why lay people can’t ask God to bless things.  However, it should not be done with accompanying gestures of blessing, etc.
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