Holy or font water

Discussion in 'Sacraments and Liturgy' started by Scottish Monk, Jun 10, 2012.

  1. Scottish Monk

    Scottish Monk Well-Known Member

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    Does your church have holy or font water in the front of the church? How is it used? Are there any health concerns for the spread of bacteria?

    Do any members sprinkle holy water in their home?

    ...Scottish Monk
     
  2. Adam Warlock

    Adam Warlock Well-Known Member

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    We have a holy water font. Not everyone uses it, but those who do will dip their fingers into the font and make the sign of the cross. Before anyone cries "Rome," be aware that Luther strongly advocated making the sign of the cross in remembrance of baptism. That is what we are doing. I'm not sure what they do about cleanliness, but I know that it is replaced with fresh water periodically.

    Like any other sacramental, holy water can be abused as a source of superstition. But keeping some around, as a daily remembrance of baptism & of the presence of the Holy Spirit, can be a good thing. It is also a good reminder that God works through means. He sanctifies physical things for his purposes. Holy water in the home is one of those personal things, in my opinion. It certainly has its uses. If it enriches one's spiritual life, it can be beneficial. If it is a distraction or a source of superstition, it can safely be ignored.
     
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  3. Scottish Monk

    Scottish Monk Well-Known Member

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    Adam Warlock...

    Thanks again for your comments. Very interesting!

    ...Scottish Monk
     
  4. Symphorian

    Symphorian Well-Known Member

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    In England, we refer to the holy water font as the holy water stoup or just stoup. (Pronounced stoop). We refer to the baptismal font just as the font. Along with stone altars/altar slabs it was common for stoups to be smashed or otherwise desecrated/put to profane use at the Reformation. In some cases they were buried or hidden in the hope that they would be restored and used again at a future date.

    At my church, the Medieval water stoup was found buried, undamaged, in the churchyard. It was restored to its probable place near the South door. Apart from one Rector back in the early 1980's I can't recall it being used.

    I live in a Diocese where many parishes are High Church with varying degrees of Anglo-Catholicism. Having attended quite a few, I would say that the use of stoups is very limited. I personally don't know of any Anglican who sprinkles holy water in their home but no doubt there are some that do.
     
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  5. Scottish Monk

    Scottish Monk Well-Known Member

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    Symphorian...

    Thank you for your very interesting comments.

    ...Scottish Monk
     
  6. Gordon

    Gordon Well-Known Member

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    It is there I use it...
     
  7. seeking.IAM

    seeking.IAM Member

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    My church has one, of which I am an infrequent user. I suppose anything is possible, but I don't suppose it to be any riskier for germ transmission than the common cup.
     
  8. Andrea

    Andrea Member

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    ....that awkward moment when you stick your fingers in the font and there is nothing in it....then you find out there was a reason for it and everyone knew except you....
     
  9. Jerome

    Jerome Member

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    Brother Adam,

    Yes. Luther did teach that Christians make the sign of the cross in order to remember the grace of God given in baptism. It is a terrific disappointment that Christians no longer find it "useful" to remember having been claimed as a child of the Triune God through their dying and rising in Christ.

    Yours in Him,
    Jerome
     
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  10. CatholicAnglican

    CatholicAnglican Active Member

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    The church I used to go to when I was still in the ACoC had two holy water stoups, one at the right of the narthex door, and one on the right of the door of the lady chapel. I have a container which can hold holy water, but I would have to visit an RC church to fill it
     
  11. CatholicAnglican

    CatholicAnglican Active Member

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    A good thing is that my ANiC priest is ok with holy water, and there is a blessing for it in the English Ritual both in Latin and English
     
  12. CatholicAnglican

    CatholicAnglican Active Member

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    I've always liked the Asperges and Vidi Aquam, my former parish did that, I used to hold the Aspersorium and the Celebrant's Cope whilst walking down the aisle and the priest would sprinkle the faithful with the Aspergillum. I hope to persuade our priest to use that rite.
     
  13. Toma

    Toma Well-Known Member Anglican

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    Wow, you really go for the full gamut, CatholicAnglican. :p
     
  14. CatholicAnglican

    CatholicAnglican Active Member

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    I like it cause of it's spiritual reminder of our Baptism and that Demons flee from it :)
     
  15. Toma

    Toma Well-Known Member Anglican

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    Reminder of Baptism is good, but I don't understand where the (Roman) Catholic notion of demons fleeing in terror from blessed water came from. Christ our Lord never really made such statements, so it's a mysterious history. Do specific bells, books, and candles really cause demons pain, anguish, and insult? Is it just being pious to say so? Other than the reminder/memorial element of the water, all this seems very fanciful. :p
     
  16. CatholicAnglican

    CatholicAnglican Active Member

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    Read the rite of blessing of Holy Water, study the prayers.
    http://www.daytonlatinmass.org/wp-content/uploads/2009/05/blessing-of-water.pdf
     

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