St. Blaise is the patron saint of sore throats. He was a bishop in ancient Armenia so I am not sure how the legend of him and the throats became so universal but the liturgy of the throats is still with us. Sadly we could not do it this year but probably many needed it. Some may think it is odd but not controversial. However some years ago a young priest in the north of the county decided he would not hold the short service. Retribution was not long in coming. An elderly member of the congregation reported him to the local paper, never known for a lot of news but at this time it really must have been desperate, and the story appeared on the front page. This produced a swift retreat and complete victory for the old lady. Never underestimate the power of the press or of old ladies for that matter. Today the crib came down as yesterday was the old end to Christmas tide and we kept it up till then this year. Somehow it was good to have it in the church and reassuring. It is hard though to accept that Lent is only just round the corner, the year seems to me moving along already, snow drops already in evidence.