St. Vincent Ferrer Water

May 4, 2012

In 2007, Pope Benedict issued the Instruction Universae ecclesiae on the implementation of the Apostolic Letter Summorum pontificum, which was issued motu proprio.  Among other things, the Instruction clarified that religious orders, including the Order of Preachers, are permitted to use the liturgical books in force in 1962.  Among the liturgical books of the Roman Rite specifically mentioned by the Holy Father was the Rituale Romanum, or Roman Ritual.  In the new rites of the Church, this was replaced, at least in part, by the new Book of Blessings. Before the Second Vatican Council, it was common to reserve certain blessings of objects to religious orders.  These blessings were often associated with the invocation of a particular saint or for aid for a particular intention.  In the Order of Preachers, the tradition arose of blessing water in the name of St. Vincent Ferrer, as an invocation of assistance against illness. This is due, at least in part, to the reputation of this great saint as the instrument of many miraculous healings.  The Order of Preachers currently celebrates the feast of St. Vincent Ferrer this Saturday, May 5. Today, there are no longer any so-called “reserved blessings”.  Therefore the blessing printed below (in both Latin and English) for the blessing of water by the invocation of St. Vincent Ferrer (“St. Vencent Ferrer Water”) may be used by any priest:

Blessing of Water for the Sick in Honor of St. Vincent Ferrer

“St. Vincent Ferrer Water”

V: Our help is in the name of the Lord. R: Who made heaven and earth. V: Blessed be the name of the Lord. R: Both now and forevermore. V: Lord, heed my prayer. R: And let my cry be heard by you. V: The Lord be with you. R: And with your spirit. Let us pray. We humbly appeal to your majesty, O Lord, asking that as you once blessed the rock in the desert, letting a copious flow of water come forth when Moses struck it twice with his rod, thus typifying by this double stroke the mystery of your passion and the two wooden beams of the cross; so now you may again hallow with your bounteous blessing this water by the mystery of the same holy cross. And let every sick person who drinks of it or is sprinkled with it forthwith experience the healing effect of your blessing; through Christ our Lord. R: Amen. I bless this water in the name of God + the Father almighty, who created this pleasing element for man’s use ennobling it by His wondrous power to wash away the stains of both body and soul; to be drink for the thirsty; cool refreshment for those suffering from the heat; a means of travel for seafarers; and who in water and by the water in the universal deluge–when the cataracts of heaven poured down rain for forty days and forty nights, yet sparing the lives of the eight people in the Ark–prefigured the sacrament of the New Covenant. May He now bless + and hallow + this water, so that by the invocation of His holy name and that of St. Vincent, it may heal the sick, strengthen the infirm, cheer the downcast, purify the unclean, and give full well-being to those who seek it; in the name of the Fa+ther, and of the +Son, and of the Holy + Spirit. All: Amen. The priest, touching the vessel of water with a relic or image of St. Vincent, says: Let us pray. Lord, hear our entreaties, and by the merits of St. Vincent, whose relic (or image) we apply to it, pour out your constant bless+ing on this element, water, and let it be a health-giving drink to those who use it. R: Amen. In the name of the Fa+ther, and of the +Son, and of the Holy + Spirit. R: Amen. This sign of the cross should be traced with the relic or image.  Then the priest says; Antiphon: May St. Vincent be with us in the twilight of life to lead us on the sure path to Christ. V: Pray for us, St. Vincent. R: That we may be worthy of the promises of Christ. Let us pray. God, who has granted that a multitude of people acknowledge your name through the preaching of your confessor, Vincent; we beg you that it be our lot to have Him as our reward in heaven whom he announced on earth as the Judge who is to come; through Christ our Lord. R: Amen.

Benedictio Aquae in Honorem S. Vincentii Ferrerii Pro Infirmis

Sacerdos stolam deferens dicat:
V. Adjutórium nostrum in nómine Dómini. R. Qui fecit cælum et terram.
V. Sit nomen Dómini benedíctum. R. Ex hoc nunc, et usque in sæculum.

V. Dómine, exáudi oratiónem meam. R. Et clamor meus ad te véniat. V. Dóminus vobíscum. R. Et cum spíritu tuo. Orémus. Majestátem tuam, Dómine, súpplices exorámus ut qui in desérto erémi petram benedixísti, ut bis a virga Móysi percússa, aquæ ex ea largíssime egrederéntur, et géminam illam percussiónem sacraméntum Passiónis et duo ligna Crucis significáre voluísti, tua quoque benignitáte et cleméntia per ejúsdem sanctæ Crucis mystérium, aquam istam larga bene+dictióne sanctífices, ut omnis infírmus, qui de ea bíberit, vel ex ea aspérsus fúerit, séntiat statim salutárem tuæ benedictiónis efféctum. Per Christum Dóminum nostrum. R. Amen.

Benedíco hanc aquam in nómine Dei Pa+tris omnipoténtis, qui hoc ad usum humánum gratum creávit eleméntum, ut sit sórdium lavácrum córporis et ánimæ, mira omnipoténtia elevátum; potum sitiéntibus tríbuat, refrigérium sit æstuántibus, via et sémita navigántibus; et qui in aqua et per aquam in mundi univérsi submersióne sacraméntum novæ legis præsignávit, cum octo ánimas salvávit in arca super eam ambulánte, apértis cataráctis cæli plúere fecit eam quadragínta diébus et quadragínta nóctibus super terram, hanc aquam bene+dícat, et sanctí+ficet, ut ad sui sancti nóminis et sancti Vincéntii invocatiónem ægrótum sanet, consólidet infírmum, dejéctum érigat, immúndum puríficet, ac peténti ab eo salútem poténter restítuat. In nómine Pa+tris, et Fí+lii, et Spíritus + Sancti. R. Amen. Targens Sacredos vas aquae Reliquia vel Imagine sancti Vincentii dicat: Oremus Adésto, Dómine, supplicatiónibus nostris, et eleménto huic aquæ méritis sancti Vincéntii, cujus Relíquia vel (Imágine) tángitur, virtútem tuæ iterátæ bene+dictiónis infúnde, ut bibénti fiat potus ad salútem. In nómine Pa+tris, et Fí+lii, et Spíritus + Sancti. R. Amen. Quatuor Cruces in hac Oratione praesignatae fieri debent cum Reliqua vel Imagine. Sacerdos dicat Ant.: Adsit nobis propítius in hujus vitæ véspere, ad Christum nos Vincéntius tuto ferens itínere. V. Ora pro nobis, beáte Vincénti. R. Ut digni efficiámur promissiónibus Christi. Orémus. Deus, qui géntium multitúdinem, mira beáti Vincéntii Confessóris tui prædicatióne, ad agnitiónem tui nóminis veníre tribuísti: præsta, quæsumus; ut, quem ventúrum Júdicem nuntiávit in terris, præmiatórem habére mereámur in cælis Christum Dóminum nostrum. R. Amen. [The original blessing in Latin is taken from the Breviarium Juxta Ritum S. Ordinis Praedicatorum issued under the authority of Fr. Emmanuel Suarez, Master of the Order of Preachers, in 1952.  The translations, slightly modified, are taken from The Roman Ritual, translated by Philip T. Weller, S.T.D., and published in 1964 by the Bruce Publishing Co.]

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