The feast day of St. Blaise is celebrated on Feb. 3. He is the patron saint of throat maladies and wild animals. The ceremonial blessing of the throats is credited to St. Blaise.
The actual birth date of St. Blaise is not known. He was born into a wealthy family in Sebastea, Armenia. It is believed Blaise was a physician who had also studied philosophy. Eventually, he became the Bishop of Sebastea, Armenia. He was known for his gift of healing. The most famous of these healings was the healing of a young boy who was choking on a fish bone. This led to the tradition of blessing of the throats on his feast day using two blessed candles pressed against the throat.
St. Blaise not only healed people, but he also healed wild animals. A pig, belonging to a poor woman, had been attacked by a wolf. After Blaise succeeded in healing the pig, he fled to the hills to avoid persecution. Eventually, he was found and captured. Sentenced to die for his faith, the woman whose pig he had cured came to visit him, bringing him two wax candles to dispel evil. He was eventually tortured and killed in the year 316.
When the blessing of St. Blaise is given, two candles are consecrated by a prayer. These candles are held in a crossed position by a priest over the throat of the person being blessed. The following blessing which is found in the official Book of Blessings is often then prayed:
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 the Son and the Holy Spirit. Amen.
Doing little things
with a strong desire
to please God
makes them really great.
Quote of St. Francis de Sales; Feast day January 24
February is the Month of the Passion of the Lord