Preface: permission has been given to share this inspiring story, with the person's name and identity kept completely anonymous. They hope it will encourage others to have faith in God.
A retired, aged widow and mother from Tulsa, OK, a non-practicing Lutheran, whose late husband had been a practicing Catholic, with whom she raised a practicing, orthodox, Catholic family, has often been invited to attend Mass year after year by one of her adult, Catholic children.
But she has only attended a Catholic Mass, or any kind of church service, a handful of times in the last couple decades after her children were raised in the Catholic Church, though she does pray at home and maintains her Christian faith in Our Lord Jesus Christ.
She admitted that she had once considered embracing the Catholic Faith, as her late mother had done later in life, but hadn't because she "felt turned off by negative, critical people at church" when she had attended Mass with her husband and children.
I think many of us can understand that.
Holy Candles for the
St. Blaise Blessing
At age eighty-two, she has been suffering from a thyroid condition for the last two years, evidenced by multiple doctor visits, multiple blood tests each showing very abnormal levels of calcium, and chronic malaise. Thyroid disease can cause very serious, chronic, debilitating symptoms, and in some cases death. Frequent symptoms included fatigue, weakness, and insomnia, because of electrolyte imbalance.
No specific treatment was given since the kind of thyroid disorder had not been nailed down, since she was uncomfortable taking a certain, confining test. She is claustrophobic from working in the coal mines as a teenager.
The Saint Blaise Blessing:
The St. Blaise Blessing of her throat was given on Sunday, February 11, 2018, at a Tulsa parish where the Traditional Latin Mass is offered. The priest was still offering the blessing, even though the Feast had been celebrated officially the week before last. This aged lady, suffering from this thyroid condition in her throat region, among other ailments, asked on her own accord, ie without being asked, to go to Sunday Mass, the first time in seven years, two Sunday's in a row this February. Later she stated she felt very happy after attending Mass.
So, who was St. Blaise? St. Blaise was a physician, bishop, and martyr who lived in the 3rd century. Fish Eaters website has a fine article about him HERE. One of his miracles was curing a dying boy, related to a fish bone stuck in his throat. After his canonization, the Church designated him one of the "Fourteen Holy Helpers."
As that article relates, at the Feast of St. Blaise every February, the parish priest will traditionally have the faithful come kneel at the communion rail. As he stands in front of each person, he crosses two unlit candles across their throat, as he prays a special prayer of healing, invoking the healing powers of St. Blaise. Asking him, a saint, to ask God to heal the sinner of their ailment.
This practice is based on the Catholic doctrine of the "communion of the saints." We ask saints to pray for our needs.
The blessing is for general healing and strengthening for any illness, but in particular for disorders of the throat.
How often this is observed today in the post-conciliar period, I am not sure, but it is still a Feast Day in February, and this blessing is still the custom prescribed in the Ritual for blessings (old and new ritual). Does your parish give this "sacramental" for the sick? Is it still commonly observed across our Diocese of Tulsa and Eastern Oklahoma (new name for diocese, by the way)?
For this bless-ed lady, the parish she attended was one where the Ancient and Venerable Roman rite is celebrated every Sunday, the truly "Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite," as Benedict XVI called it. And, Latin Mass-dedicated priests commonly uphold this merciful Catholic tradition every year.
In the Throat Region
(if you gently pinch either side of your
mid-throat, you can feel this gland move)
St. Blaise Blessing of the Throat
One Week Later:
One week later, this lady happened to have a checkup with her family physician, who ran another routine blood test to see what her calcium levels showed. The next day, her doctor called her and told her it appears she no longer has a disorder in her thyroid gland. The blood calcium levels had returned to normal!
She asked the doctor, "What do you think about that, doctor? Is it a miracle?" The doctor replied, "Yes, I would definitely call this a miracle."
So there you have it folks. A bona fide miracle, I'd say, though I'm no expert. Will consult with the pastor though. In the meantime, speaking to this lady, she was very emotional but joyful for this healing, and is asking to keep going back to Catholic Mass on Sundays!
Please pray for her conversion to the Catholic Church, and her spiritual progress during this stage in her life.
And she also asks to keep going to the same Latin Mass parish where she said she loved the traditional ceremony, the Gregorian chant choir, the friendly people, and the very personable pastor.
God does work in mysterious ways to bring us to Him, I'd sure say. Let's put it this way:
If an aged non-Catholic person, interested for years in the Catholic Church, finally coming several times to Mass to seek God's grace, receives the St. Blaise blessing to heal throat conditions, and then a week later their doctor/medical expert tells them their thyroid, throat condition is in fact healed (miraculously, as he stated)...IF that isn't a verifiable miracle, then folks I don't know what is!
I will be sharing this on Facebook, so please also share far and wide. Plus I'll also email our bishop, Bishop Konderla, a link to this post, for his edification, and since he is our bishop I figure he is the main one who could verify this as a miracle worthy of sharing with the Church, if he thinks it prudent.
The Comment Box is Open.
The Sacred Heart of Jesus,
His Divine Mercy
* Note to the Sick. If you are seeking healing for a medical condition, and an increase in God's grace, I recommend asking your pastor if he can still give the St. Blaise Blessing. But also, I highly recommend praying to St. Padre Pio, as well as St. Cosmos and Damien, St. Raphael, St. Luke, St. Teresa of Avila, Blessed Alexandrina, and Fr. Kenneth Walker, FSSP (RIP: Bishop Slattery had given permission to publicly pray to him after a miracle was attributed to him in the healing of a Clear Creek monk). I prayed to these saints for several months to recover from my own medical crisis, recently, and God healed me (and my physical therapist)!