Daily Martyrology for February 3

In 316, at Sebastea in Armenia, the death of St. Blaise, bishop. A ritual blessing of the throats with two crossed candles occurs on his feast day. Two miracles attributed to him account for this: While he was being taken to trial, he persuaded a wolf to release a pig it was in the process of killing; the pig's owner brought him food and candles while he was in prison. Also, while in prison, he cured a boy who had a fish bone stuck in his throat. His legend records that he was martyred by being raked with metal wool combs. His emblem is a wool comb, and he is the patron of wool combers.

In 865, at Bremen, St. Ansgar, bishop and patron of Denmark. Ansgar was a monk first at Corbie, then at Corvey. He was a distinguished preacher who was sent as a missionary to Denmark and then to Sweden. His missionary efforts met with initial success, but as the Frankish empire declined, political difficulties undercut what he had accomplished. He was made archbishop of Hamburg and then of Bremen.

In 1837, at Lyons, France, St. Claudine (Marie Saint-Ignatius) Thévenet. When Lyons rebelled during the Reign of Terror, two of her brothers were arrested and executed. As they were led away, one of them told her to forgive “as we forgive.” She established homes for poor women and taught them to support themselves by weaving silk. She founded a congregation devoted to educating poor girls and to looking “at others in a way that enables us to discover in each one a promise, an expectation, an epiphany of the Divine Providence.”

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Our daily martyrology was written by Fr. Hugh Feiss, OSB. Copyright © 2008 by the Monastery of the Ascension, Jerome, ID 83338.