Epiphany House Blessings in 2017 – what does 20 + C + M + B + 17 mean?

Epiphany House Blessings in Houghton-le-Spring 2017


A part of church history is the custom of blessing homes at the New Year.

Traditionally at Epiphany, when we celebrate the visit of the wise men from the East to the baby Jesus, families hold a short service of prayer to ask God’s blessing on their dwellings and on all who live, work with and visit them. In this way, we invite Jesus to be a “guest” in our home, a listener to each conversation, a guide for troubled times, and a blessing in times of thanksgiving.

Houses are marked with chalk like this 20 + C + M + B + 17 – which is the year and the initials of the wise men, Caspar, Melchior and Balthasar. C M B above the door, also stands for Christus Mansionem Benedicat, Latin for “May Christ Bless this House.”

Blessed chalk was distributed at St Michael’s this morning, please ask a friend who came to bless your house or collect some chalk from church this week to bless your own home.

After you have blessed your own home, please offer the same to a neighbour or friend that we might share the love of God in our community.

Look out for the chalk markings around Houghton!

Here is how to bless your home:

Take the blessed chalk and mark on the wall above or beside your front door

20 + C + M + B + 17


The three Wise Men,
Caspar, Melchior, and Balthasar

followed the star of God’s Son who became human
two thousand
and seventeen years ago.
May Christ bless our home
and remain with us throughout the new year. Amen.

Loving God, bless this household. May we be blessed with health, goodness of heart, gentleness, and abiding in your will. We ask this through Christ our Saviour. Amen.





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