St. Blaise

Feast day : February 3
Patron of Throat Illnesses



Saint Blaise also known as Saint Blase, was a physician, and bishop of Sebastea in historical Armenia (modern Sivas, Turkey). According to the Acta Sanctorum, he was martyred by being beaten, attacked with iron carding combs, and beheaded. In the Latin Church his feast falls on 3 February.

From being a healer of bodily ailments, Saint Blaise became a physician of souls, then retired for a time, by divine inspiration, to a cavern where he remained in prayer. As bishop of Sebastea Blaise instructed his people, as much by his example as by his words, and the great virtues and sanctity of the servant of God were attested by many miracles. From all parts, the people came flocking to him for the cure of bodily and spiritual ills.


The blessing of St. Blaise :

According to the Acts, while Blaise was being taken into custody, a distraught mother, whose only child was choking on a fishbone, threw herself at his feet and implored his intercession. Touched at her grief, he offered up his prayers, and the child was cured. Consequently, Saint Blaise is invoked for protection against injuries and illnesses of the throat.

In many places on the day of his feast the blessing of St. Blasius is given: two candles are consecrated, generally by a prayer, these are then held in a crossed position by a priest over the heads of the faithful or the people are touched on the throat with them. At the same time the following blessing is given: "May Almighty God at the intercession of St. Blaise, Bishop and Martyr, preserve you from infections of the throat and from all other afflictions". Then the priest makes the sign of the cross over the faithful.

As the governor's hunters led Blaise back to Sabastea, on the way, the story goes, they met a poor woman whose pig had been seized by a wolf. At the command of Blaise, the wolf restored the pig to its owner, alive and unhurt. When he had reached the capital and was in prison awaiting execution, the old woman whose pig he had saved came to see him, bringing two fine wax candles to dispel the gloom of his dark cell. In the West there was no cult honoring St. Blaise prior to the eighth century.


Cult of Saint Blaise :

The Fourteen Holy Helpers.
One of the Fourteen Holy Helpers, Blaise became one of the most popular saints of the Middle Ages. His cult became widespread in Europe in the 11th and 12th centuries and his legend is recounted in the 14th-century Legenda Aurea. Saint Blaise is the saint of the wild beast.

He is the patron of the Armenian Order of Saint Blaise. In Italy he is known as San Biagio. In Spanish-speaking countries, he is known as San Blas, and has lent his name to many places (see San Blas).

In Italy, Saint Blaise's remains rest at the Basilica over the town of Maratea, shipwrecked there during Leo III the Isaurian's iconoclastic persecutions.

Many German churches, including the former Abbey of St. Blasius in theBlack Forest and the church of Balve are dedicated to Saint Blaise/Blasius.


In His Footsteps : 
Take time as Saint Blaise did to find out how you can help wild animals. Find out what is being done to support and protect the wildlife in your area. There is wildlife everywhere, even in cities. Even a birdfeeder can help God's creatures survive.



Prayer :
Saint Blaise, pray for us that we may not suffer from illnesses of the throat and pray that all who are suffering be healed by God's love. Amen





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