Salt, Ecclesiastical Use of
Salt, Ecclesiastical Use Of.
It would appear from a sentence of Augustine that in the 4th century was customary to use salt in baptism, at least in Milan. Salt was placed in some churches on the tongues of the catechumens, as an emblem of wisdom and an admonition to attain it. With salt, milk and honey were given. In the
Sacramentary of Gregory the Great, after a form for the benediction and consecration of salt, it is said, "Hac oratione expleta, accipiat sacerdos de eodem sale, et ponat in ore infantis, dicendo, Accipe sal sapientiae in vitam aeternam" ("This benediction being finished, let the priest take a portion of the same salt and put it into the mouth of the infant, saying, Take the salt of wisdom to eternal life ").