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416

Part Two

1669

Sacramentals derive from the baptismal priesthood: every

baptized person is called to be a “blessing,” and to bless.

174

Hence

lay people may preside at certain blessings; the more a blessing

concerns ecclesial and sacramental life, the more is its administra-

tion reserved to the ordained ministry (bishops, priests, or dea-

cons).

175

1670

Sacramentals do not confer the grace of the Holy Spirit in

the way that the sacraments do, but by the Church’s prayer, they

prepare us to receive grace and dispose us to cooperate with it. “For

well-disposed members of the faithful, the liturgy of the sacra-

ments and sacramentals sanctifies almost every event of their lives

with the divine grace which flows from the Paschal mystery of the

Passion, Death, and Resurrection of Christ. From this source all

sacraments and sacramentals draw their power. There is scarcely

any proper use of material things which cannot be thus directed

toward the sanctification of men and the praise of God.”

176

Various forms of sacramentals

1671

Among sacramentals

blessings (

of persons, meals, objects, and

places) come first. Every blessing praises God and prays for his gifts. In

Christ, Christians are blessed by God the Father “with every spiritual

blessing.”

177

This is why the Church imparts blessings by invoking the

name of Jesus, usually while making the holy sign of the cross of Christ.

1672

Certain blessings have a lasting importance because they

conse­

crate

persons to God, or reserve objects and places for liturgical use.

Among those blessings which are intended for persons—not to be con-

fused with sacramental ordination—are the blessing of the abbot or abbess

of a monastery, the consecration of virgins and widows, the rite of religious

profession and the blessing of certain ministries of the Church (readers,

acolytes, catechists, etc.). The dedication or blessing of a church or an altar,

the blessing of holy oils, vessels, and vestments, bells, etc., can be men-

tioned as examples of blessings that concern objects.

1673

When the Church asks publicly and authoritatively in the name

of Jesus Christ that a person or object be protected against the power of

the Evil One and withdrawn from his dominion, it is called

exorcism.

Jesus

performed exorcisms and from him the Church has received the power

and office of exorcizing.

178

In a simple form, exorcism is performed at the

celebration of Baptism. The solemn exorcism, called “a major exorcism,”

can be performed only by a priest and with the permission of the bishop.

The priest must proceed with prudence, strictly observing the rules estab-

174 Cf.

Gen

12:2;

Lk

6:28;

Rom

12:14;

1 Pet

3:9.

175 Cf.

SC

79; CIC, can. 1168;

De Ben

16, 18.

176

SC

61.

177

Eph

1:3.

178 Cf.

Mk

1:25-26; 3:15; 6:7, 13; 16:17.

784

2626

1128

2001

1078

923, 925

903

395

550

1237