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I’ve got white candles and I’m not afraid to use them

In these parts, throat blessings are hard to come by. No, make that near impossible. It’s just not done. At least not at our parish. So years ago I took it upon myself to do the blessings. And, yes, that’s allowed. The first time I blessed throats for my class of fourth-grade faith formation students, they looked at me in fear and asked if I was going to light those candles before holding them up to their throats. Ah, how sad that these kids don’t know some of the more interesting traditions of our faith. But once I told them about St. Blaise, a bishop and martyr who is said to have healed a boy who was choking on a fish bone, they were all in, and eagerly so.

So if you, like me, can’t find a priest to bless your throat, you just need two white candles, and if you’re able, a small red ribbon to tie them together. Form a cross with the candles, place them (unlit, of course) on the throat of your spouse or child or whoever else is willing to let you do this, and follow these instructions from the Book of Blessings:

1634 A lay minister touches the throat of each person with the crossed candles and, without making the sign of the cross, says the prayer of blessing.

Through the intercession of Saint Blaise, bishop and martyr, may God deliver you from every disease of the throat and from every other illness.

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.

Each person responds: Amen.

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3 Comments Post a comment
  1. BeHonest #

    Yes, a lot of our Catholic traditions are being done w/o because of lack of priests and churches closing. Being from the NYC area my heart is very hurt and broken from watching all the changes taking places. Trying to keep the Faith while feeling full of despair at times and trying to hold on to traditions that are very dear to me. While not trying to come on so strong about everything and turning people off in the same sense. Cause I realize when one comes across like a radical Catholic you lose more people. Cause you make them feel pressured. So I’m very careful with that.
    Love seeing your work. Getting so excited and making me feel so proud to be Catholic. We have to just keep praying cause things are truly changing. And I do believe in miracles.
    Thanks you for being you.
    Your Sister in Christ, Tee

    February 4, 2015
    • Mary DeTurris Poust #

      Dear Tee,
      Thanks for your comment. You made me smile this morning, and that’s a pretty big deal.
      Peace and blessings!

      February 4, 2015
  2. Fr. Mike #

    Good work, Mary–doing the blessing at home and passing the word about it! Parents are the first educators of their kids!

    February 4, 2015

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