Dear Beloved in Christ,
God is with us!
On Monday, I encouraged the practice of daily anointing with blessed oils. Perhaps even more important than this is the regular partaking of holy water. Each Theophany we receive a bottle of holy water. It is both an aid in our journey of theosis and a powerful weapon against the evil one, as we can see in the litanies from the Service of the Great Sanctification of the Waters:
-That we may be illumined with the Light of Knowledge and Piety through the descent of the Holy Spirit, let us pray to the Lord.
-That this water may become the gift of sanctification, redemption from sins, for the healing of soul and body, and for every suitable purpose, let us pray to the Lord.
-That it may become water welling up to eternal life, let us pray to the Lord.
-That this water may prove effectual for the averting of every plot of visible and invisible enemies, let us pray to the Lord.
-That it may be for the purification of soul and body to all who with faith take and drink of it, let us pray to the Lord.
-That we may be granted to be filled with sanctification through drinking this water, by the invisible manifestation of the Holy Spirit, let us pray to the Lord.
Furthermore, the prayer during this service asks God to impart into the holy water these powers:
And give to it the grace of redemption and the blessing of Jordan. Make it a source of incorruption, a gift of sanctification, a deliverance from sins, an averting of diseases, unapproachable by hostile powers, filled with angelic strength. That all who draw from it and partake of it may have it for cleansing of souls and bodies, for healing of passions, for sanctification of homes, for every suitable purpose.
As we can see, the gifts that are imparted to holy water are numerous. Yet for some of us, after the service on Theophany we take this bottle home and place it by our prayer corner, where it is rarely or never consumed.
Instead, I encourage you to have a sip of holy water every morning, before you have anything to eat or drink. (Say a brief prayer at the time as well.) God, in His love for us, has given us this powerful medicine for soul and body, and for protection against evil. And every day we need this medicine—especially in the present situation.
If you need holy water, please come to the church office and ask for a bottle. And if you are unable to leave your home, contact me directly.
May our Lord’s holy water, His “gift of sanctification,” bless you each and every day.