SIX VOLUMES IN ONE
BY THE DISTINGUISHED EXPONENTS OF CATHOLICISM
REV. HENRY DODRIDGE, D. D.
REV. HENRY EDWARD MANNING, D. D.
REV. F. LEWIS, of Granada
REV. STEPHEN KEENAN
REV. BERNARD VAUGHAN, S. J.
REV. THOMAS N. BURKE, O. P.
A. There are a godfather and a godmother, who are to instruct the child, if the parents neglect it. The priest breathes upon the infant, to signify spiritual life. This ceremony St. Augustine f makes mention of, and says it was universally practised in his time; and it is used in contempt of the devil, and to drive him away, by the Holy Ghost, who is called the spirit or breath of God. The infant is signed with the cross, to signify that he is listed, a soldier of Christ. Salt is put into the child's mouth, which is an emblem of prudence, and imports grace, to preserve the soul incorrupt. Spittle is applied to the child's ears and nostrils, in imitation of Christ, who used that ceremony in curing the deaf and dumb. The anointing signifies the healing quality of grace; the head denotes the dignity of Christianity; the anointing the shoulders, that he may be strengthened to carry his cross; the breast that his heart may concur in all duties; the white linen cloth, or chrysom, put on the child, signifies innocence of behavior; and the wax taper, or candle, signifies the light of faith he is endowed with, and the flame of charity.