Sunday, December 14, 2008

Blessing the "Bambi"

At this morning's Angelus, turnout was even heavier than usual as the Pope continued the longstanding, beloved Roman tradition of blessing the Bambinelli -- the likenesses of the Christkindl brought by the city's children to St Peter's Square every Gaudete Sunday in advance of their arrival in the family creche come Christmas.

For the first time, as opposed to including the figures in the general blessing at the noontime prayer's end, B16 employed a special prayer for the rite. Lest anyone find it useful in coming days, here's a translation:
God our Father,
you loved man so much

to send us your only Son Jesus,

born of the Virgin Mary,

to save us and lead us back to you.
We pray that, with your blessing
these images of Jesus, soon to come among us,
might be, in our homes,
a sign of your presence and love.

Good Father,
give your blessing to us, too,
to our parents, our families and friends.

Open our hearts,
that we might know to receive Jesus in joy,
always do what he asks of us
and see him in all those
who need our love.

We ask this in the name of Jesus,
your beloved Son, who came to give peace to the world.

You who live and reign forever and ever.
...and as a bonus, an especially-beloved Italian carol...


PHOTO: AFP/Getty(1)