St. Blaise, Bishop of Sebaste
by St. Alphonsus de Liguori
St. Blase was a native of the city of Sebaste, in Armenia, and in his younger days applied himself to the study of philosophy, in which he made considerable progress; he afterwards studied medicine with great success. The science of the saints, however, and a desire to improve in the love of God, occupied his principal attention, whereby being inflamed with an ardent charity towards the poor, he went frequently to relieve them in their sickness. Upon the death of the bishop, his fellow citizens unanimously elected him their pastor, by reason of his extraordinary virtues and great learning.
He accepted the office, as being unwilling to resist the will of God, which appeared too manifest in his election to be mistaken; but in the government of his church he lost not that spirit of holy retirement which he had had from his youth. He therefore retired to Mount Argeus, without the city, and dwelt in a cave there (The holy bishop retired, however, only when he was obliged to do so on account of the persecution, following in this the counsel and example of the divine Master. This we find in his office as well as in the Acts collected by the Bollandists.–Ed). Continue reading