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The Heiromartyr Saint Blaise (11 February)

Blaise was born in the province of Cappadocia. From his early childhood he was God-fearing and meek. Because of his great virtues, he was chosen as bishop of the city of Sebaste [in Armenia]. Blaise was a great spiritual and moral beacon in this pagan city. During a grave persecution of Christians, St. Blaise encouraged his flock and visited the martyrs of Christ in prison. Foremost among them was the eminent and glorious Eustratius. When the city of Sebaste was completely emptied of Christians–some were slain and others fled–the elderly Blaise withdrew to Mount Argeos and settled there in a cave.

Wild beasts recognized the holy man and gathered around him, and he tenderly caressed them. But the persecutors found the saint in this remote place and brought him to trial. Along the way, Blaise cured a young boy who had a bone caught in his throat. At the plea of a poor widow whose pig had been snatched by a wolf, the saint, by the power of his prayer, made the wolf return it.

The sinister judges tortured Blaise severely, flogging him and scrapping him with an iron comb. By his steadfastness in the Christian Faith, Blaise converted many pagans to the Faith. Seven women and two children languished in prison with him. The women were beheaded first, and afterward the wonderful Blaise was beheaded with the two children. He suffered and was glorified in the year 316 A.D. People pray to St. Blaise for the well-being of their domestic livestock and for protection against wild beasts. In the west, he is also invoked against diseases of the throat.

Saint Blaise was Bishop of Sebastia. Divine grace, through which he healed the diseases of men and beasts, and especially of infants, made his name famous. He contested for the Faith under Licinius in the year 316. Saint Blaise is invoked for the healing of throat ailments.

Apolytikion of Hieromartyr Blaise

Fourth Tone

As a sharer of the ways and a successor to the throne of the Apostles, O inspired of God, thou foundest discipline to be a means of ascent to divine vision. Wherefore, having rightly divided the word of truth, thou didst also contest for the Faith even unto blood, O Hieromartyr Blaise. Intercede with Christ our God that our souls be saved.

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