The Official Catholic Bacon Blessing

p-25486-atlAh, bacon. This deliciously greasy and salty meat is celebrated and enjoyed by men everywhere. Indeed, the global veneration of bacon has become a mania. And what’s not to love? It is the most versatile of meats and the perfect complement for any meal, whether it’s topping a pizza, a side with eggs, or wrapped around an expensive filet mignon.

Holy Mother Church is not ignorant of this masculine devotion to cured pork, and in her maternal charity, she has given us a blessing for bacon. Here it is.

V. Our help is in the name of the Lord

R. Who has made heaven and earth.

V. The Lord be with you.

R. And with your spirit

Let us pray. Bless, Lord, this bacon which You have made, that it may be a healthful food for mankind. Grant by the invocation of Your holy name that all who partake of it may receive health of body and safety of soul, through Christ our Lord.

R. Amen. (Then it is sprinkled with holy water.)

There you have it. The next time you sit down to eat your chocolate covered bacon or bacon topped ice cream, remember this prayer of blessing.

Oh, and if you’re wondering, this is a real Catholic blessing taken from the Rituale Romanum. You may also want to check out the official Catholic beer blessing. Happy eating!

PS: If you’re a priest, can you confirm whether or not a priest is needed for this blessing?

12 Responses to “The Official Catholic Bacon Blessing”

  1. Since it says “The Lord be with you,” then you have to be at least a deacon to say that part. But the “Our help …” and the actual prayer can be said by anyone.

  2. The Rituale assumes that a priest confers this blessing (which, of course, is distinct from grace before meals–which anyone can and should offer). The Rituale specifies that a priest sprinkles the holy water.

  3. A priest is needed for this blessing. Deacons are only able to give those blessings which are specifically delegated to him.

    • Maryland Deacon Reply

      Because so much more training is involved to bless the Bacon, that only a duly ordained priest can attend to it. Now, when it comes to cooking, Reverend Father usually invites himself over to the deacon’s house where he expects to be served a wonderful dinner by the lowly deacon and his wife.

    • True, there is a generic food blessing in the Rituale, but there is also a specific prayer for lard/bacon that follows the same pattern (see number 7 on the page you linked to). I originally found this prayer in the Catholic Rural Life Prayer Book that includes a specific blessing for bacon, citing the Rituale and indicating that bacon was interchangeable with lard.

  4. In re: priests for the blessing: The blessings in the Rituale are generally constitutive blessings. That is, they actually make things sacred when said by a priest, as opposed merely to asking God to bless the people who use the thing or asking God to bless the thing itself. That said, there is not a lot of difference, in terms of words, between this blessing (“bless this bacon”) and the prayer we all say before meals (“bless . . . these thy gifts”). The prayer can be said in an invocative manner, the way we say the prayer before meals. The question is, how to do that?

    First, take out “Dominus vobiscum” / “et cum spirituo tuo” and replace it with “Domine, exaudi orationem meum” / “et clamor meus ad te veniat” (or, if you prefer, “Lord, hear my prayer” “and let my cry come unto Thee”). That’s the standard substitution for when the text is read by a cleric. (Don’t believe me? Look up the rubrics for the Breviarum Romanum, it’s right there . . . somewhere, in what is a surprisingly long and complex document.)

    Second, omit the sign of the cross that is probably in the R.R. in the middle of “bless.”

    Third, I’m not entirely sure about the use of holy water in this context by a layman.

    Bob’s your uncle, you’ve got an invocative prayer usable by a layman. The ones for meals, beer, etc. are amenable to the same treatment. Don’t try it with deprecatory prayers.

Leave a Reply