In Catholic tradition, can a Catholic acquire exorcised salt from a priest? If yes, what are the rules of such salt (acquiring, use, handling, storage) that the laity have to comply with?

I have so far read here telling the laity that they can sprinkle salt all over their property, their neighborhood, in their cooking, etc. with an accompanying prayer, and sometimes medallions, to send a clear message to the demons that they are not welcome in that particular place. One believer tapes some of the grains of the salt into fence posts, etc. to keep it in place.

Are the faithful are allowed to use the salt in such manners?

Very much appreciated!


2 Answers 2


Yes , the laity are permitted to use exorcised salt or any other sacramental that the Church has for their disposition.

Unfortunately the Ordinary Rite has no provision for this blessing in the new "Rituale". That said, it is possible to find priests of the Extraordinary Rite to pronounce the blessing for you. Some priests of the Ordinary Rite are comfortable using the Rituale Romanum of Pope Pius V. The prayer would be the one found in Geremia's answer.

The salt should be kept in a container marked either "blessed salt" or "exorcised salt" in order that it does not get mixed up with other salt in your household. This is my practice.

The blessing of the salt is a minor exorcism.

What is the difference between a major exorcism and a minor exorcism?

While both forms of exorcism are directed against the power of the devil, the Rite of Major Exorcism is employed only when there is a case of genuine demonic possession, namely, when it is determined that the presence of the devil is in the body of the possessed and the devil is able to exercise dominion over that body.

Minor exorcisms are prayers used to break the influence of evil and sin in a person's life, whether as a catechumen preparing for Baptism or as one of the Baptized faithful striving to overcome the influence of evil and sin in his or her life. - Frequently Asked Questions about Exorcism

The Church does offer the "reserved" blessing of water (and salt) in the Old Rite on the Vigil of the Epiphany which is a major exorcism blessing. The Benedictio Aqua in Vigilia Epiphaniae Domini. This Blessing is reserved to the local bishop or his delegate. This was known as Magi Water and is used to bless houses. It is still possible to find some priest using this blessing and to get some of the salt put aside for personal usage.

These blessed salts are used to be sprinkled around doorways and windows in order to protect homes from evil influences and in cooking for the same reasons. Fr. Gabriel Amorth speaks of this in his books.

Want to protect yourself, your family and your home? Go back to the basic sacramentals, like using holy water, exorcised oil and exorcised salt. - Exorcist gives tips on how to ward off evil

Fr. Iannuzzi suggests that the St. Benedict Pyx would be ideal to store blessed salt. Fr. Iannuzzi had been assisting Fr. Gabriel Amorth, one of the chief exorcists, for years.

St. Benedict Pyx with Exorcism Salt

St. Benedict Pyx for Exorcism Salt!

  • Using a term like "priest of the Ordinary Rite" and "priest of the Extraordinary Rite" is inaccurate, uncommon and misleading.
    – eques
    Commented Jul 15, 2020 at 15:36
  • @eques Following Pope Benedict’s 2007 letter Summum Pontificum, the two missals, that of Paul VI (1970) and that of John XXIII (1962), were named the “Ordinary Form” and “Extraordinary Form,” respectively. Further, between these “two usages of the one Roman rite,” Pope Benedict saw an opportunity for a “mutual enrichment.” - Why Benedict XVI Wrote ‘Summorum Pontificum’
    – Ken Graham
    Commented Jul 17, 2020 at 11:42
  • That wasn't my concern. Referring to the priests as different is erroneous, not the liturgical forms. There are different forms of the blessings, Mass, etc, but all priests technically can do either form.
    – eques
    Commented Jul 17, 2020 at 13:40
  • It is doubtful that the priests of The Priestly Fraternity of Saint Peter will say the Mass of the Ordinary Form
    – Ken Graham
    Commented Jul 18, 2020 at 14:16
  • Perhaps I am not being clear. My contention is not that there aren't priests who whether by personal custom or requirement of order/community celebrate one form exclusively but rather the term "priest of the (Extra)Ordinary Form" implies a more fixed attribute than exists and furthermore is a term which has no common use.
    – eques
    Commented Jul 20, 2020 at 12:44

The traditional (pre-Vatican II) blessing for holy water in the Rituale Romanum (Roman Ritual) includes exorcisms of salt and water:

1. On Sundays, or whenever this blessing takes place, salt and fresh water are prepared in the church or in the sacristy. The priest, vested in surplice and purple stole, says:

P: Our help is in the name of the Lord.

All: Who made heaven and earth.

2. The exorcism of salt follows:

God's creature, salt, I cast out the demon from you by the living ✠ God, by the true ✠ God, by the holy ✠ God, by God who ordered you to be thrown into the water- spring by Eliseus to heal it of its barrenness. May you be a purified salt, a means of health for those who believe, a medicine for body and soul for all who make use of you. May all evil fancies of the foul fiend, his malice and cunning, be driven afar from the place where you are sprinkled. And let every unclean spirit be repulsed by Him who is coming to judge both the living and the dead and the world by fire.

All: Amen.

Let us pray.

Almighty everlasting God, we humbly appeal to your mercy and goodness to graciously bless ✠ this creature, salt, which you have given for mankind's use. May all who use it find in it a remedy for body and mind. And may everything that it touches or sprinkles be freed from uncleanness and any influence of the evil spirit; through Christ our Lord.

All: Amen.

Exorcism of the water:

God's creature, water, I cast out the demon from you in the name of God ✠ the Father almighty, in the name of Jesus ✠ Christ, His Son, our Lord, and in the power of the Holy ✠ Spirit. May you be a purified water, empowered to drive afar all power of the enemy, in fact, to root out and banish the enemy himself, along with his fallen angels. We ask this through the power of our Lord Jesus Christ, who is coming to judge both the living and the dead and the world by fire.

All: Amen.

Let us pray.

O God, who for man's welfare established the most wonderful mysteries in the substance of water, hearken to our prayer, and pour forth your blessing ✠ on this element now being prepared with various purifying rites. May this creature of yours, when used in your mysteries and endowed with your grace, serve to cast out demons and to banish disease. May everything that this water sprinkles in the homes and gatherings of the faithful be delivered from all that is unclean and hurtful; let no breath of contagion hover there, no taint of corruption; let all the wiles of the lurking enemy come to nothing. By the sprinkling of this water may everything opposed to the safety and peace of the occupants of these homes be banished, so that in calling on your holy name they may know the well-being they desire, and be protected from every peril; through Christ our Lord.

All: Amen.

3. Now the priest pours the salt into the water in the form of a cross, saying:

May this salt and water be mixed together; in the name of the Father, and of the Son, ✠ and of the Holy Spirit.

All: Amen.

P: The Lord be with you.

All: May He also be with you.

Let us pray.

God, source of irresistible might and king of an invincible realm, the ever-glorious conqueror; who restrain the force of the adversary, silencing the uproar of his rage, and valiantly subduing his wickedness; in awe and humility we beg you, Lord, to regard with favor this creature thing of salt and water, to let the light of your kindness shine upon it, and to hallow it with the dew of your mercy; so that wherever it is sprinkled and your holy name is invoked, every assault of the unclean spirit may be baffled, and all dread of the serpent's venom be cast out. To us who entreat your mercy grant that the Holy Spirit may be with us wherever we may be; through Christ our Lord.

All: Amen.

This rubric answers your question:

  1. Christ's faithful are permitted to take holy water home with them to sprinkle the sick, their homes, fields, vineyards, and the like. It is recommended too that they put it in fonts in the various rooms, so that they may use it to bless themselves daily and frequently.

Since holy water contains exorcised blessed salt, the faithful are permitted to do the same with blessed salt.

However, salt blessed for the purpose of baptism (baptismal salt) is not to be given to the faithful, according to this rubric from the baptism ritual:

  1. … Salt thus blessed [for the exclusive use in a baptism rite] should not be given to anybody, nor even returned to anybody who may have brought it for the blessing, but it should be saved exclusively for baptism or thrown into the sacrarium.

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