Vigil of the Epiphany

We are planning to have a Solemn Mass for the Vigil of the Epiphany on Saturday, 5 January, at St Mary’s in Pine Bluff at 4:00 PM, followed by Exposition, Benediction, and the Solemn Blessing of the Epiphany Water.

What began as plans for simple Benediction and blessing of the Epiphany Water before the Knights of Divine Mercy’s monthly spiritual gathering quickly escalated into plans for the solemn liturgies, including the full Mass of the Vigil of the Epiphany.

This beautiful Vigil of one of the most important Feasts in the Church’s calendar was removed after the 1955 simplification of the rubrics, though it was never replaced, and thus became nothing more than a simple feria in Christmastide.

Whereas most of the vigils were traditionally very penitential, the Vigil of the Epiphany retains the joyful signs of Our Lord’s Nativity, with white vestments, the Te Deum sung during the Divine Office, the Gloria and Creed recited at Mass, and most of the Mass propers taken from Sunday in the Octave of the Nativity.

The Vigil also includes the Solemn Blessing of the Epiphany Water, which — unlike typically Holy Water — is a blessing reserved only to those properly designated by a bishop. The rite supposes a bishop or priest assisted by deacon and subdeacon, and includes extra, and includes extra, extremely powerful exorcism prayers, beyond those of the usual Sunday Asperges water.

Fr Heilman’s invitation, and anticipated schedule for the evening is available here: