On February 3, the custom on the optional memorial of St. Blaise, is to bless the throat of the faithful after Mass. The words the priest uses are as follows:
“Through the intercession of St. Blaise, Bishop and Martyr, may
God deliver you from every disease of the throat
and from every other illness. In the name of the
Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.
Two candles are blessed, held slightly open, and pressed against the throat as the blessing is said.
Very few facts are known about Saint Blaise. It is believed he was a bishop of Sebastea in Armenia who was martyred under the reign of Licinius in the early fourth century.
The legend of St. Blaise tells us that he was born into a rich and noble family who raised him as a Christian. He became a bishop. Later, a new persecution of Christians began. He received a message from God to go into the hills to escape persecution. Hunters discovered a cave surrounded by wild animals that were sick. Blaise walked among them unafraid, curing them of their illnesses. The hunters recognized Blaise as a Bishop, so they captured him to take him back for trial. On the way back, he talked a wolf into releasing a pig that belonged to a poor woman. When Blaise was sentenced to be starved to death, the woman, in gratitude, sneaked into the prison with food and candles. Finally, the governor had Blaise killed.
Saint Blase is the patron of physicians, sick cattle, wax- chandlers, woolcombers, and of wild animals because of his care for them and of those with throat maladies. He is invoked against afflictions of the throat.
Please join us at the Cathedral as we will have this devotion following the 7:15 AM, 8 AM and 12:10 PM Masses. All are welcome.
My LORD and my God! I offer up to Thee my petition in union with the bitter passion and death of Jesus Christ, Thy Son, together with the merits of His immaculate and blessed Mother, Mary ever virgin, and of all the saints, particularly with those of the holy Helper in whose honour I make this novena.
Look down upon me, merciful Lord! Grant me Thy grace and Thy love, and graciously hear my prayer. Amen.