Today is when Catholics traditionally have our throats blessed. But this year, it may be a different experience.

There’s this, from Boston, for example:

The protocols are based on materials received from the Holy See and the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB).

Regarding the feast of St. Blaise on Feb. 3, the USCCB referred to the Book of Blessings, which says a priest or deacon may give the blessing of throats “to all assembled by extending hands, without the crossed candles, over the people while saying the prayer of blessing.”

“The current circumstances would certainly be considered a sufficient pastoral reason to avoid administration of the blessing to individuals in the usual manner, should there be any concern of danger due to the ongoing pandemic,” the USCCB said.

Meanwhile, keep in mind this prayer to St. Blaise:

O glorious St. Blaise, who by your martyrdom left to the Church a precious witness to the Faith, obtain for us the grace to preserve within ourselves this divine gift, and to defend — without concern for human respect — both by word and example, the truth of that same Faith, which is so wickedly attacked and slandered in these our times. You miraculously restored a little child who was at the point of death because of an affliction of the throat.

Grant us your mighty protection in similar misfortunes. And, above all, obtain for us the grace of Christian mortification, together with faithful observance of the precepts of the Church, which keep us from offending almighty God. Amen.