House blessing

These words from John O’Donahue might be used for a house blessing. Although it’s not a common thing in Australian culture, it’s an ancient tradition in Christianity, and many migrant-ethnic communities value the blessing of a home. It could also be a beautiful reflection when people are leaving a home, and anticipating the new owners who will make it their own home.

Where Love Has Lived
A home is not simply a building; it is the shelter around the intimacy of a life. Coming in from the outside world and its rasp of force and usage, you relax and allow yourself to be who you are. The inner walls of a home are threaded with the textures of one’s soul, a subtle weave of presences. If you could see your home through the lens of the soul, you would be surprised at the beauty concealed in the memory your home holds. When you enter some homes, you sense how the memories have seeped to the surface, infusing the aura of the place and deepening the tone of its presence. Where love has lived, a house still holds the warmth. Even the poorest home feels like a nest if love and tenderness dwell there.
(Source: John O’Donohue, from Beauty)

“When you enter a house, first say, ‘Peace to this house.’” (Luke 10:5). This was a Jewish greeting. The greeting ‘Shalom’ translates as a blessing, “May God cause all to be well with you.” When the disciples entered a home, they prayed a blessing not only on the structure, but moreover the people that would pass through, live, and move out from it to touch other’s lives in proximity and throughout generations.
(Source: Meg Bucher, Crosswalk)

May the God of peace
bring peace to this house.
May the Son of peace
bring peace to this house.
May the Spirit of peace
bring peace to this house,
this night and all nights.
(Source: John Birch, Faith and Worship)

Bless this house and those within,
Bless our giving and receiving,
Bless our words and conversation,
Bless our hands and recreation,
Bless our sowing and our growing,
Bless our coming and our going,
Bless all who enter and depart,
Bless this house, your peace impart.
(Source: John Birch, Faith and Worship)

May the peace of God reign in this place
and the love of God forever hold you tight.
May the Spirit of God flow through your life
and the joy of God uphold you day and night.
(Source: John Birch, Faith and Worship)

Prayers from other (mainly traditional) sources
(compiled by John Birch, Faith and Worship))

Irish Home Blessing
“Bless the four corners of this house
and be the lintel blest,
and bless the hearth,
and bless the board,
and bless each place of rest….”

St. Brigid’s Blessing:
May Brigid bless the house where in you dwell.
Bless every fireside every wall and door.
Bless every heart that beats beneath its roof.
Bless every hand that toils to bring it joy.
Bless every foot that walks its portals through.
May Brigid bless the house that shelters you.”

A House Blessing
Bless this house, o’Lord we pray
make it safe by night and day
Bless these walls, so firm and stout
keep want and trouble out
Bless the roof and chimney tall
let thy peace lie over all
Bless the door that it may prove
ever open to joy and love
Bless these windows shining bright
letting in gods heavenly light
Bless the folk who dwell within
keep them pure and free from sin
Bless us that one day we may dwell
o’Lord with thee.

Old Irish Blessing
Come in the evening
Come in the morning
Come when expected
Come without warning
Thousands of welcomes
You’ll find here before you
and the oftener you come
The more we’ll adore you

Irish House Blessing
God Bless the Corners of this House
and be the Lintel Blessed
And Bless the Hearth
And Bless the Board
And Bless Each Place of Rest
Bless Each Door That Opens Wide To Strangers and to Kin
And Bless Each Crystal Windowpane
that lets the Sunshine In
And Bless the Rooftree Overhead
And Every Sturdy Wall
The Peace of Man
The Peace of God
The Peace of Love to All

May you have –
Walls for the wind
And a roof for the rain,
And drinks bedside the fire
Laughter to cheer you
And those you love near you,
And all that your heart may desire
Celtic Blessing

Bless this house, o Lord, we pray.
Make it safe by night and day.
Bless these walls so firm and stout,
Keeping want and trouble out.
Bless the roof and chimney tall,
Let thy peace lie over all.
Bless the doors that they may prove
Ever open to joy and love.
Bless the windows shining bright,
Letting in God’s heavenly light.
Bless the hearth a-blazing there,
With smoke ascending like a prayer.
Bless the people here within…
Keep them pure and free from sin.
Bless us all, that one day, we
May be fit, O lord, to dwell with Thee.
Helen Mary, 1927 (set to music by May Brahe)

About admin

Rev Sandy Boyce is a Uniting Church in Australia Minister (Deacon) in placement at Pilgrim Uniting Church, in Adelaide CBD (12 Flinders St). This blog is mainly to resource worship planners for our services, but of course may be useful for others. We have some great writers of music, words for hymns and liturgy at Pilgrim, so this blog also includes their words.
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