New Life for Sacramentals
Saint Blaise day arrives February 3, close to the beginning of Lent, when Catholics set aside meat and take up eating fish on Fridays. You may recall he saved a boy from choking on a fish bone, making the day easy to remember.
The use of candles for the blessing is unique. Maybe they’re used due to the close proximity of the Candlemas blessing on February 2, the feast of the Presentation of the Lord. Perhaps you remember lining up in the center aisle in church, waiting for your turn to have the crossed candles placed at the base of your neck and the St. Blaise prayer of protection from ailments of the throat prayed over you? Remember how that simple prayer made you feel?
Though St. Blaise’s feast day may not be as popular as Ash Wednesday or Palm Sunday, as sacramentals go, it’s right up there. Calls come rolling in with inquiries about the blessing and when it will be offered. This year is no exception. There is a special power in the Church’s sacramentals. They calm our fears, reassure us in moments of uncertainty, and offer hope in troubled times. They remind us we’re not alone…