Communion for Camrys.

In a quiet residential area of a town that I will leave anonymous, I found this unusual marquee.car blessingI’ve certainly heard of “blessing of the animals” events, but cars? Apparently I’m not as well-traveled as I’d like to think I am. Since car-blessing seems even more quintessentially American than valet parking at a strip-mall nightclub, I decided to do a bit more research on this curiosity.

Without disclosing the identity of the church, I will at least acknowledge that it is an ethnic Catholic congregation, and it does have a website. It goes without saying that Catholic churches recognize a number of saints’ days. As I learned from the church newsletter, the annual blessing of the cars—and their drivers—aligns with St. Christopher’s Day, the patron saint of travelers. So there’s a logical origin for this event, even if St. Christopher himself never owned a Hyundai. And yes, the newsletter features a photo of the church’s priest, offering solemnities to sedans in a parking lot.

A friend recently informed me that he’d heard of the blessing of motorcycles, which was another new one for me. Perhaps if I’d explored a bit more during my recent trip to Sturgis, South Dakota I would have found a church where they sprinkled holy water on some Harleys. Better luck next time.

7 thoughts on “Communion for Camrys.

  1. Reader John

    In the Orthodox Church, we bless all the chariots on the day we commemorate Prophet Elijah, who was taken up into heaven in a Volkswagen diesel. I may be wrong on a detail or two there.

    Reply
    1. AmericanDirt Post author

      No worries, Reader John. I’m sure you have the details perfectly. Hope the Volkswagen diesel wasn’t trying to cheat the emissions tests on the way up.

      Reply
  2. Rebecca B.

    I’m a cultural Catholic at best. I barely even do Christmas/Easter. But my car has a St. Christopher medal (my dad gave it to me when I got my first car) and I carry a St. Christopher prayer card (from my mom), just in case. I’ve yet to die in a car accident, so it must work.

    Reply
    1. AmericanDirt Post author

      I’m confident it works. And, from what I understand, Volvo and Subaru even sought ordination under St. Christopher. Yugo decided to sleep in that day.

      Reply
  3. Chris Barnett

    I knew it was a Catholic parish before I read past the headline. Baptists and some other Protestants have worship on Wednesday at 7. 🙂

    Reply
    1. AmericanDirt Post author

      Good point. Bingo is definitely not how Baptists spend their Wednesday nights. Still is funny that they promote the event on their marquee as “come bless your car” and not “St. Christopher’s Day”. After all, they need something the average person can relate to.

      Reply

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