Aleteia

Throat problems? Have it blessed on the feast of St. Blase

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Each year on February 3 thousands of individuals have their throats blessed in honor of the saint.

St. Blase was a holy bishop who lived in Armenia during the 4th century. Little is known about him, except that he was martyred for his faith in about the year 316.

One story that has survived the test of time centers around a miracle that connects him to the miraculous healing of throat maladies. The Roman Ritual offers a brief summary of the story.

While in prison he performed a wonderful cure on a boy who had a fishbone lodged in his throat and who was in danger of choking to death. From this account we have the longtime custom of invoking the Saint for all kinds of throat trouble.

For many centuries the Church has performed a special blessing on his feast day, February 3. Many have been cured of their throat problems through the intercession of St. Blase. While no one is guaranteed a cure, the Church encourages the faithful to pray to God with a sincere faith, entrusting their prayers to the holy bishop of Armenia.

Below is the traditional blessing prayer, which the priest prays while placing candles blessed on February 2 (Feast of the Presentation of the Lord) against the throat of the individual.

Through the intercession of Saint Blase, 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.