I’ve always wondered what the Catholic Church means by “blessing,” especially in blessing objects. Does the object bear a new and real virtue?
Briefly, a blessing on an object is a prayer that praises God for the act of creating this object and implores that the object be used for his greater glory. The Catechism puts it this way:
Among sacramentals, blessings (of persons, meals, objects, and places) come first. Every blessing praises God and prays for his gifts. In Christ, Christians are blessed by God the Father "with every spiritual blessing." This is why the Church imparts blessings by invoking the name of Jesus, usually while making the holy sign of the cross of Christ. (CCC 1671)