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In the Roman Catholic Church and some other churches, the ceremony of sprinkling the altar, clergy, and congregation with holy water.
[From Latin aspergēs (mē), you will sprinkle (me), the first words of the rite, second person sing. future tense of aspergere, to sprinkle; see asperse.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
1. (Roman Catholic Church) a short rite preceding Mass, in which the celebrant sprinkles those present with holy water to the accompaniment of the chant Asperges me, Domine
2. (Roman Catholic Church) the chant opening with these words
[C16: from Latin Asperges (me hyssopo) Thou shalt purge (me with hyssop)]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
the rite of sprinkling holy water before high mass.
[< Latin: you will sprinkle (2nd pers. singular future of aspergere)]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.