Saint Blaise: 3rd February – Blessing of Throats

Saint Blaise was originally born in Sebastea. He preached Christianity in his home town and was well-known as a healer. He became famous for performing certain miracles such as   helping the sick animals and people around his home town.

He is recognised as the saint of throat disease or ‘The Blessing of the Throats’ in the Roman   Catholic Church. Saint Blaise Day is celebrated on the 3rd of February each year by Christians  globally.

His most famous and memorable act was when he healed a young boy that choked on a  fishbone. The boy was placed at the Saints feet by his mother, and he healed straight away!  The governor, however, led him to jail due to his faith. The governor was unsuccessful in  encouraging Saint Blaise to renounce his faith and therefore he beheaded him in 316 AD.

Crossed candles are an important part of Saint Blaise Day, they commemorate the mother of the boy who choked on the fishbone.  She presented Saint Blaise with crossed candles to light his way to jail when the ruler of Sebastea ordered his arrest. The origin of the blessing of throats uses crossed candles as a symbol.

The Blessing of Throats will be at 10am Mass on Friday 3rd February in St Patrick’s Church Wicklow.