Holy water returns to Germantown church, with one change for COVID


GERMANTOWN, Tenn. — The COVID pandemic has forced us to change most every aspect of our lives, including how we practice our faith.

One Catholic church in Germantown is welcoming parishioners back with a unique and safe way to dispense holy water.

It’s called a “touchless holy water dispenser,” an invention born of necessity and a welcomed sight to Craig Demille, a member of Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic Church.

“Yeah, that’s going to take a little education, because people, when they first see them, will probably think it’s a sanitation station rather than a Holy Water dispenser,” Demille said.

Even with “in-person” services returning at the church, it was decided to discontinue the use of the large holy water fountain, leaving church members wondering how they would continue this important act of faith.

“Holy Water is one of our traditions in the church and people are so used to growing up with it. People know it is a powerful instrument in their spiritual life for protection and also their baptismal commitment. So, they have been missing it,” Father Jolly Sebastian said.

Sebastian ordered the dispensers online, calling the effort the work of the holy spirit — and Google.

“We looked into the website and unfortunately it was back ordered, so we were delayed. My expectation was to bring it in during Easter time,” he said.

He says it’s a simple yet effective way of keeping people physically and spiritually healthy in the age of COVID.

“That’s what the pandemic brought us — finding new ways in every spectrum of our life. So, this is one of the new inventions of this pandemic time,” he said.

Sebastian says holy water that doesn’t go on a person’s hand ends up in a plastic container and is disposed of.

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