Thursday, January 31, 2013

Little HolyDays :: Candlemas + St. Blaise's Day

Both Candlemas and St. Blaise's Feast Day are to be celebrated this weekend! The former I'd never heard of until recently, so this is our first time celebrating it. As our B-boy is named for the latter, we will also be honoring that day as well. Candlemas is the 2nd, but as we will better be able to celebrate both days on Sunday afternoon, I am rolling it all into one grand luncheon celebration on Sunday after mass.

Image source: Wikipedia

Candlemas marks 40 days after Christmas, signifying the purification of the Blessed Mother, and the Presentation of Christ in the temple. Also, not to be forgotten, Anna, the widow, who had spent years praying in the temple, and Simeon, who only wished to see His Messiah before he died, are to be honored on this day. Simeon's reference to Jesus as "a light for revelation to the Gentiles" is where the importance of candles and light plays into this Feast. You can read more of the details of the story (as we shall while enjoying our mini lunch feast on Sunday) in Luke 2:22-40.

Image source: Illegiterati blog

St. Blaise, both a physician and a Bishop of Sebastea, was born in Armenia and lived in the 3rd and 4th century. He is most well known for his association with diseases of the throat. On St. Blaise's day, throughout the world, many come to the Church for a blessing of their throat. This connection came about from a story that happened as Blaise was being led to prison for his Christian beliefs. A mother sent her son, who was choking on a fish bone, to Blaise, and as soon as the boy came near Blaise, he miraculously was healed. St. Blaise died a martyr's death in 316, and has been honored as one of the Fourteen Holy Helpers, a group of saints for whose intercession is pleaded in cases of specific diseases.

Our Luncheon/Tea to honor both these days will include:

Water :: to signify the Purification of the Virgin Mary
Candlemas Crepes (recipe from Catholic Cuisine) - we'll see if I'm feeling adventurous!
Pretzels :: representing arms crossed in prayer for Simeon
Olives stuffed with cream cheese :: black for Anna's status as a widow, and white for the purity of her soul
St. Blaises Cookies :: a variations of this recipe
Dove shaped sandwiches :: not sure what filling I'll use, but I will cut out said sandwiches with whatever bird shaped cookie cutter I can find in our collection
Fruit :: to round out the meal

Also, I hope to make this creative candle craft found over at JOYfilled Family either on Sunday, or if I'm running behind, maybe Monday with Dom.

I'd like to thank Cottage Blessings and Shower of Roses for their lovely inspiration behind this post. Please check out these links to see how they celebrate Candlemas!

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This post Little HolyDays :: Candlemas + St. Blaise's Day first appeared on Two Os Plus More on 31 January 2013

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