2016 had been proclaimed the Year of Saint Blaise in Dubrovnik and the Dubrovnik diocese. The ocassion being the great 1700 year anniversary of his martydom and the reason, best covenyedby the poet´s verse:
For a thousand years this old saint had held out city in his powerful hand, he is out patron saint, out saviour then and at present.“
Born in a faraway place, and yet our fellow citizen, he was born long but is our contemporary. On special occasions, for no one who is alive and present than for him, the people spontancously cheer: LON LIVE SAINT BLAISE!
He was born around the year 280 in the Amerinian city of Sebasti (today the Turkish city of Sivas). He chose to become a doctor. The people chose him to become the Bishop of Sebasti. A spiritual man and humane priest, as Blaise truly was, the people likes him and the authorities did not. He was persecuted, tortured, and brutally murder. His tomb is in Sebasti. His relics are in Dubrovnik. Strange! „He appeared to the caring parish priest and brought out city salvation“, 1044 years ago. Since then, we are his choice and he is ours. We put his image on documents, stamps, and currency. His statues decorate public buildings, castles, and the city walls. We built him churches and erected him altars. Banners emblazoned with the letters
spelled out in gold. This year is the 600th anniversary of the adoption od the laws devoted to the ideals that led out poet Gundulić, inspired from above, to sing: „Fair liberty, beloved liberty, liberty sweetly avowed, thou are the tresured gift that God to us endowed“. As in Dubrovnik everything always began ended with St. Blaise, let us be finished as well with:
LONG LIVE ST. BLAISE!
The reverend father Toma Lučić rector of the church of St. Blaise