Child Blessing

Recently a confluence of events has had me thinking about the importance of having rituals to mark significant events for the Hellenic community. Events like the birth or naming of a child, a marriage, a death are important points in the life of individuals and a community; and it seemed to me that these rituals are missing in the Hellenic community, or at least the part of it that I interact with. With that in mind I sat down and thought about which deities would be involved in a ritual like this.

Artemis and Hekate are referenced in their epithets as being guardians and caregivers to children. Athena would be a good choice for a girl, while one could call Apollon for a boy, however both can be called for any gender.

Below I’ve included verses for Artemis, Hekate, Hermes, Apollon, and Athena. The idea was to call the aspects of each deity that most closely related to the blessing you want given to the child. I used gender neutral pronouns, people can obviously use other pronouns as they see fit. I also want to encourage people add or remove deities per their practice. For example, I might add Hera or Aphrodite to the deities called. This is just to get people started and to, hopefully, start providing our community with the tools to mark momentous occasions in our lives.

I call to Artemis Paidotropos,

I call to Artemis Philomeirax,

I call to Artemis Hemerasia,

Protector of children, guardian of youth,

We ask that you extend your protection to this child.

Please extend your watchful gaze to (child’s name.)

Guard their sleep and their waking,

Guard them in success and failure.

Let them learn from their mistakes and the mistakes of others,

Let them flourish and grow unhindered by needless sorrow.

I call to Hekate Kourotrophos,

I call to Hekate Phosphoros,

I call to Hekate Átalos,

Nurse of children, guide and light bearer,

We ask that you extend your protection to this child.

Please extend your watchful gaze to (child’s name.)

Guard their sleep and their waking,

Guard them in success and failure.

Let them not stray from the safe path,

Let them be secure in their journey.

I call to Hermes Kharidotes,

I call to Hermes Kharmophron,

I call to Hermes Eriounes,

Giver of good things, watchful shepherd,

We ask that you extend your protection to this child.

Please extend your watchful gaze to (child’s name.)

Guard their sleep and their waking,

Guard them in success and failure.

Let them not lack for joy,

Let them have a life full of laughter.

I call to Apollon Alexikakos,

I call to Apollon Oulios,

I call to Apollon Epikourios,

Giver of good health, repeller of harm,

We ask that you extend your protection to this child.

Please extend your watchful gaze to (child’s name.)

Guard their sleep and their waking,

Guard them in success and failure.

Let them not fear the darkness of the world,

Let them enjoy the full breadth of their life.

I call to Athena Eryma,

I call to Athena Alalkomeneis,

I call to Athena Oxyderkes,

Protector and defender, sharp eyed goddess,

We ask that you extend your protection to this child.

Please extend your watchful gaze to (child’s name.)

Guard their sleep and their waking,

Guard them in success and failure.

Let them always be watched over by kind eyes,

Let them be defended from all harm.

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