This Friday, January 3rd 2012, is the Feast of Saint Blaise, Bishop and Martyr. Saint Blaise was a Bishop in Armenia in the fourth century. He was renowned for his holiness of life and had a gift of healing. However, during the persecution of Christians by the Emperor Licinius, he was arrested. On the way to prison, a mother brought him her son, who was choking to death having swallowed a fish-bone. By Blaise's prayers, the child was cured. In the prison, an old woman brought Blaise two wax candles to light up his dark cell. Therefore, we have the tradition of asking his intercession on his feast day each year, and having the blessing of throats using two candles, blessed the previous day, the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord. St Blaise was martyred for his faith in the prison by being raked with iron combs.
Here in Sacred Heart Church, on the Feast Day, there will be Masses at 10.00am and 7.30pm at which Fr Malachy and Fr Hugh will bless throats.