MARTYRDOM OF ST. BLAISE
At Sebaste, in Armenia, the holy martyr Blase, (about the year 316,) Bishop of that city, and the worker of many miracles. Under the President Agricolaus he was long flogged, then hung to a beam, where his flesh was rent with iron combs, then he suffered a foul imprisonment, after which he was cast into the lake, and, forasmuch as he came out thence unhurt, he was beheaded, by order of the same judge, along with two lads.
Before him seven women, who were collecting the drops of his blood as they fell during the torture, were arrested for being Christians, and after being grievously tormented were put to the sword.
Born – Sebastea, historical Armenia
Died – c. 316 AD
Attributes – Wool comb, candles, tending a choking boy or animals
Patronage – Animals, builders, choking, veterinarians, throats, infants, Maratea, Italy, Sicily, Dalmatia, Dubrovnik, Ciudad del Este, Paraguay, Rubiera, stonecutters, carvers, wool workers.
Combing, sometimes known as carding, (despite carding being a completely different process), is a sometimes-fatal form of torture in which iron combs designed to prepare wool and other fibres for woolen spinning are used to scrape, tear, and flay the victim’s flesh.
The iron combs typically used for torture were sturdy instruments with one or two rows of teeth, each a few inches in length and designed to prepare wool and other fibres for woolen spinning. Used for combing rough fibres, these instruments resembled miniature garden rakes.
The Acts of St. Blaise
The legendary Acts of St. Blaise were written 400 years later. The Acts of St. Blaise, written in Greek, are medieval.
The legend as given in the Grande Encyclopédie is as follows:
Blaise, who had studied philosophy in his youth, was a doctor in Sebaste in Armenia, the city of his birth, who exercised his art with miraculous ability, good-will, and piety. When the bishop of the city died, he was chosen to succeed him, with the acclamation of all the people. His holiness was manifest through many miracles: from all around, people came to him to find cures for their spirit and their body; even wild animals came in herds to receive his blessing. In 316, Agricola, the governor of Cappadocia and of Lesser Armenia, having arrived in Sebastia at the order of the emperor Licinius to kill the Christians, arrested the bishop.
As he was being led to jail, a mother set her only son, choking to death of a fish-bone, at his feet, and the child was cured straight away. Regardless, the governor, unable to make Blaise renounce his faith, beat him with a stick, ripped his flesh with iron combs, and beheaded him.
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.
Bishop and Martyr
Simple – Red vestments
Missa ‘Sacerdotes Dei’
INTROIT – Daniel 3: 84, 87, 57
Sacerdotes Dei, benedicite Dominum: sancti et humiles corde, laudate Deum. Ps. Benedicite, omnia opera Domini Domino: laudate et superexaltate eum in sæcula. Gloria Patri.
Sacerdotes Dei, benedicite Dominum, sancti et humiles corde, laudate Deum.
O ye priests of the Lord, bless the Lord: O ye holy and humble of heart, praise God. Ps. All ye works of the Lord, bless the Lord: praise and exalt Him above all for ever. Glory be to the Father.
O ye priests of the Lord, O ye holy and humble of heart, praise God.
O God, who dost gladden us by the annual feast of blessed Blaise, Thy Martyr and Bishop: mercifully grant that we who celebrate his heavenly birthday, may also rejoice in his protection. Through our Lord. R. Amen.
COLLECT IN HONOR OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY
Grant to us, Thy servants, we beseech Thee, O Lord God, that we may enjoy perpetual health of mind and body: and through the intercession of blessed Mary ever Virgin may be delivered from present sorrow and enjoy everlasting gladness. Through our Lord.
EPISTLE – 2 Corinthians 1:3-7
Lesson from the second letter of Saint Paul the Apostle to the Corinthians
Brethren: Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and the God of all comfort, Who comforts us in all our afflictions, that we also may be able to comfort those who are in any distress by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted by God. For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so also through Christ does our comfort abound. For whether we are afflicted, it is for your instruction and salvation; or whether we are comforted, it is for our comfort; which shows its efficacy in the endurance of the selfsame sufferings that we also suffer. And our hope for you is steadfast, knowing that as you are partakers of the sufferings, so will you also be of the comfort, in Christ Jesus our Lord.
GRADUAL – Psalm 8: 6-7
Thou hast crowned him with glory and honour. And hast set him over the works of Thy hands, O Lord.
TRACT – Psalm 111: 1-3
Blessed is the man that feareth the Lord: he delighteth exceedingly in His commandments. His seed shall be mighty upon earth: the generation of the righteous shall be blessed. Glory and wealth shall be in his house, and his justice remaineth for ever and ever.
GOSPEL – Matthew 16: 24-27
Continuation of the holy Gospel according to Saint Matthew
At that time, Jesus said to His disciples, If anyone wishes to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. For he who would save his life will lose it; but he who loses his life for My sake will find it. For what does it profit a man, if he gain the whole world, but suffer the loss of his own soul? For the Son of Man is to come with His angels in the glory of His Father, and then He will render to everyone according to His conduct.
OFFERTORY – Psalm 88: 21-22
I have found David My servant, with My holy oil I have anointed him; for My hand shall help him, and My arm shall strengthen him.
Sanctify, O Lord, the gifts dedicated to Thee, and through them, by the intercession of blessed Blaise, Thy Martyr and Bishop, graciously regard us. Through our Lord.
IN HONOR OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY
By Thy gracious mercy, O Lord, and by the intercession of Blessed Mary ever Virgin, may this oblation avail us for peace and welfare both now and for evermore. Through our Lord.
It is truly meet and just, right and for our salvation that we should at all times and in all places, give thanks unto Thee, O holy Lord, Father almighty, eternal God: through Christ our Lord. Through Whom the Angels praise Thy Majesty, Dominations worship, Powers stand in awe. The Heavens and the Heavenly hosts together with the blessed Seraphim in triumphant chorus unite to celebrate it. Together with them we entreat Thee, that Thou mayest bid our voices also to be admitted, while we say in lowly praise:
Sanctus, Sanctus, Sanctus, Dóminus Deus Sábaoth. Pleni sunt cæli et terra glória tua. Hosánna in excélsis. Benedíctus qui venit in nómine Dómini. Hosánna in excélsis.
COMMUNION – Psalm 20: 4
Thou hast set on his head, O Lord, a crown of precious stones.
Refreshed by the participation in the holy gift, we beseech Thee, O Lord our God, that by the intercession of blessed Blaise Thy Martyr and Bishop, we may experience the effect of that which we celebrate. Through the Lord.
IN HONOR OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY
O Lord, grant, we beseech Thee, that we who have received these aids unto salvation, may be always and everywhere protected by the intercession of Blessed Mary ever Virgin, in veneration of whom we have offered up these gifts to Thy Majesty. Through our Lord.