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February 3, 1999

Feast of St. Blase
Bishop and Martyr
This is sort of a double posting today. I have a page that I try to post daily called Spiritual Thought for Today! and most of what is here is also there today since this is more of a journal entry rather than the usual type of thought I post there.

Anyway, I awoke this morning with a scratchy throat and expected that it was a sign of an impending cold. But it has already left me and I cannot help but think of the irony of it happening on a better day.

When I think of rituals of Catholic Church for some reason the one that always captured my attention was the blessing of the throats on the feast of St. Blase.

On the day following Candlemas the priest would have recently blessed candles tied to together with red ribbon and would go up and down the communion rail intoning "Through the intercession of St. Blase, Bishop and Martyr may you be protected from every ailment of the throat and every evil," as he placed the candles against my throat and made the sign of the cross over my head.

From a cynical point of view I can't say that it was ever that effective, at least until this morning. Usually in my youth I spent the winter with an endless stream of sore throats and colds.

About ten years ago I visisted Dobrovinik in what was then Yugoslavia. St. Blase was embedded in the city walls there. For some reason it was like visiting a long lost friend.

I feel sorry for the saints who do not have a ritual attached to their feast, they loose out.

Here is hoping that through the intercession of St. Blase you might be protected from all ailments of the throat and every other evil, in the name of the Father and + of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.

Amen!

I'm in the midst of packing which just brings to mind how much junk one can acquire in one's life and how much it costs to move that junk from one place to another. It is kind of depressing. But I could use all of your prayers over the next couple of weeks as I try to orchestrate this move.

Thanks!

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