Last month we experienced a triple-header. February 2, 2020 was Groundhog Day, Super Bowl Sunday, and Candlemas all rolled into one. As the feast of St. Blaise is February 3, our parish offered the blessing of the throats on Sunday.
Saint Blaise was a physician and is venerated as the patron saint of those who suffer from diseases of the throat. Legend has it that a woman brought her son, who had a fishbone lodged in his throat to Blaise. At Blaise’s command the boy was able to cough up the bone safely. On his feast day after Mass people line up to have their throats blessed. Since our daughter Danielle has autism and is non-verbal we wouldn’t pass up the opportunity to have her throat blessed and to pray for her to be cured of her inability to speak. As we walked up to the altar to receive this blessing the priest crossed two candles on each side of Danielle’s throat and said these words: “Through the intercession of Saint Blaise, may God deliver you from every disease of the throat.”
We have been praying for a cure for many years and we have taken our daughter to many shrines, always hoping and offering prayers that she would speak one day. Favorite shrines we’ve visited include the Shrine of Saint Padre Pio and the Shrine of Our Lady of Czestochowa. Danielle remains nonverbal to this day, and this has taught us to trust in God’s wisdom more than our own desires in this regard.
However, it is still important to bring our hopes and dreams about Danielle to God in this way and to trust that God has fashioned Danielle in the way that He sees fit for a reason. We do not know what that reason is but we have faith in God’s design.
Standing beside her as the priest crossed the candles and said the blessing, we prayed in our hearts that through the intercession of Saint Blaise God might deliver our beautiful daughter from every disease of the throat, including her inability to speak. We also prayed for the faith to trust God no matter what answer He chooses to give.
Copyright 2020 David and Mercedes Rizzo