Friday, February 3, 2012

From the martyrology: St Blaise and the blessing of throats (Feb 3)

Today in the Office we celebrate the memorial of St Blaise, one of the fourteen holy helpers, of whom the martyrology says:

"At Sebaste in Armenia, in the time of the governor Agricolaus, the passion of St. Blase, bishop and martyr, who, after working many miracles, was scourged for a long time, suspended from a tree where his flesh was lacerated with iron combs.  He was then imprisoned in a dark dungeon, thrown into a lake from which he came out safe, and finally, by order of the judge, he and two boys were beheaded.  Before him, seven women who were gathering the drops of his blood during his torture, were recognized as Christians, and after undergoing severe torments, were put to death by the sword."

There is a traditional sacramental blessing of throats that can take place today, particularly of relevant to those who sing in choirs, or sing the Office!

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