CLAIRE’S FAVORITE MIRACLES StillCatholic.com
Show me a miracle and I’ll try to prove you wrong. But by golly, the specific miracles confirmed by the Catholic Church to be true after thousands and thousands of pages of findings and test results from scientists and doctors of every religion, including specialists in the specific diseases - well, any sane and rational person who examined the findings would have to say the evidence is much stronger in favor of these miracles than of any other explanation.
These are the kinds of miracles that cannot later be explained by environmental, cosmological, psychological or medical factors.
I’m not going to bore you with the humungous list of the blind, deaf and cripple that have been miraculously and instantaneously healed by God through His Church and His saints. I’ll try not to mention the late Mother Teresa’s Church-confirmed miracles, such as the overnight disappearance of an Indian woman’s tumor, which was so big it made her look seven months pregnant. X-rays taken by the best doctors all over India all testify to this.
And, alas, there is no time to include all the holy Catholic saints whose bodies have remained “incorruptible” to this day (for eg., the body of St. Bernadette, who died in the 1800s, should be a skeleton, but, aside from a little skin discoloration, she looks beautiful)
But I will try to mention a few miracles that simply blow me away, like when the sun was falling down out of the sky and zigzagging around…..all of which was witnessed by over 75,000 people in Portugal in 1917 and was reported in secular newspapers by Christians, Jews and atheists alike.
God performs miracles because of his loving and healing nature. In many cases, His miracles also confirm the truth of His doctrines to help us along in our faith.
Below are some of my favorite miracles:
MIRACLE OF THE SUN IN FATIMA: Mary began appearing to three little children in Fatima, Portugal, asking them to pray the rosary and make sacrifices for the conversion of sinners. The children, Lucia, Jacinta and Francisco, began giving up things like their lunch or water. To show them the importance of their dedication, Mary even showed them a vision of Hell. Young Lucia wrote that the damned souls she saw in hell were “like transparent burning embers, all blackened or burnished bronze, having human forms. They were floating about in that conflagration………..amid shrieks and groans of pain and despair.”
Anyway, Mary promised the children a miracle for all to see on Oct. 13, 1917. People arrived from all over the country. The sun became like a silver disk and began to dance in the sky. It whirled, then stopped, then began to plunge down toward the crowd. People cried out in fear. Then the sun climbed back up into the sky.
The message of Our Lady of Fatima was conversion, prayer, sacrifice and reparation. She wasn’t joking. As for the children, Mary told Jacinta and Francisco they’d be in heaven soon and they soon died. Mary told Lucia she would remain on earth for many years to establish a devotion to her Immaculate Heart. Lucia became a cloistered nun, devoting her life to prayer. She turned 96 last year.
PADRE PIO. When American bombers during WW II flew over San Giovanni Rotondo, Italy to drop their bombs, the pilots encountered a giant monk in the sky preventing them from completing their mission. Pilots were unable to complete their mission, and instead would return to the US Commanding General reporting the occurrence. Padre Pio had previously promised the town’s people that their city would be spared. Padre Pio, recently named a saint by Pope John Paul II, also bore the stigmata for 50 years, sharing in the suffering of Christ. He also appeared in two places simultaneously (bilocation) on various occasions, and has literally thousands of miracles attributed to him. He could read the hearts of people who came for confession, knowing even their most secret sins. A most thorough book on the saint is Padre Pio: The True Story by biographer C. Bernard Ruffin, an initially skeptical Lutheran pastor.
The WW II event “was directly witnessed by the general of Aeronautica Italiana Bernardo Rosini, who at that time was part of the "United Air Command" operating out of Bari with the Allied air forces. "Each time that the pilots returned from their missions," General Rosini told me, "they spoke of this Friar that appeared in the sky and diverted their airplanes, making them turn back.” (Source: “I Miracoli d Padre Pio”, by Renzo Allegri,199Pages 110-111. ISBN 88-04-41322-0
JUAN DIEGO (Guadalupe, Mexico): You’ve heard about the lowly peasant to whom Mary appeared in 1531. Mary told him to tell the bishop to build a church in her name at the site so that all could come to glorify God and learn about Christ, the Savior. The bishop wanted some proof from Juan Diego, so Juan Diego returned to the site and visited the Virgin, who directed him to beautiful red roses that were growing despite the fact the region was a frozen tundra in December. Juan Diego wrapped them in his tilma, or cloak, and brought them to the bishop. As the roses fell out of the tilma, the bishop was astonished to see on the cloak a sharp image of Mary, dressed in a flowing Aztec dress. The tilma has since been analyzed by countless scientists, including Nobel Prize winners, and said to be of supernatural origins, not able to be reproduced by human hands. No trace of paint or animal or mineral colorings, or any treatment at all, can be detected. Here’s what is even more incredible: Much later, in the 20th century, new microscopes were used to magnify the Virgin’s eyes many times. In 1951, it was discovered that imprinted in the pupils are the reflections of Juan Diego, the bishop, and the interpreter. There is a photographic image of what occurred in the room when Juan Diego unveiled the cloak. In 1979, engineer Jose Aste Tonsmann of the Mexican Center of Guadalupan Studies who has his PhD from Cornell was able to magnify the eyes 2,500 times and discovered other human figures, at an even more reduced scale, in the reflection. It appeared to be an Indian family, with a mother, father and children. The news of Juan Diego’s encounter with Mary led millions of native Indians across Mexico to convert from their Aztec religion to Christianity.
Eucharistic Miracle (Lanciano, Italy): Guys, this one is cool, especially if you like science. The miracle continues today and people can see it. In 700 AD, a priest in Lanciano, Italy was doubting the Real Presence of Jesus Christ in the Eucharist. During Mass, just after he said the consecration, the bread turned into a circle of flesh and the wine became visible blood. Everyone in the church saw and was amazed. The miracle was verified as authentic again and again by doctors and scientists over the centuries.
Then, in 1971, a scientific investigation confirmed the flesh was real human flesh and the blood was real human blood. It was determined that the flesh was from the human heart, expertly dissected. Despite being over a thousand years old, the blood from the specimen tested to be fresh blood from a living human being in an analysis of the blood's proteins. Present in the live flesh was myocardium, endocardium, the vagus nerve and the left ventricle of the heart. The flesh and the blood both had the same blood-type (AB) and were from the same person.
Coincidentally (or not so coincidentally), the rare blood type AB was also detected on the Shroud of Turin. Another relic, the Sudarium of Oviedo, which is believed to be the burial face cloth of Jesus, was also confirmed to have type AB blood on it.
Anyway, despite being exposed to the air for 1200 years, the Eucharist from Lanciano was and is not affected. The miracle can still be seen today at a church in Lanciano, Italy. For info or to order beautiful color brochures picturing the Lanciano miracle, contact the Sanctuario del Miracolo Eucaristico, Frati Minori Conventuali, 66034 Lanciano (CH) Italy. Their telephone and fax number is (0872) 713189.
But wait, there’s more to this story. Listen up for another stumper…..the condensed blood is coagulated into five pellets of different sizes. For the first 700 years after the miracle, no matter which pellets were placed on one scale, the pellets on the other scale would weigh the same! One pellet on one scale was weighing the same as two pellets on the other scale. One pellet also weighed the same as all five pellets weighed together. Also, the smallest pellet had the same weight as the largest one. It showed that Christ’s body could not be divided. He is fully with us, not partly with us, when we receive the Eucharist. The miracle of the equal weights completely harmonizes with the Church’s teaching that even if just one crumb of Communion is left in your mouth, Jesus is entirely present, just as present as if he were standing in front of the apostles in the year 33 A.D. The phenomenon was last observed by reputable witnesses in 1574, at which time the findings were etched into a plaque, which is still on display at the Church.
This one’s not a miracle. It’s a book….about 400 miracles…..all people who were raised from the dead, some after being reduced to skeletons. It’s got the imprimatur seal of the Catholic Church, which means that none of its claims contradict doctrines or morals of the Church. It's called Raised From the Dead: True Stories of 400 Resurrection Miracles. Here's the official description of the book:
“Fr. Albert J. Hebert, S.M. Jesus told His Apostles to raise the dead (Matt. 10:8). This magnificent book covers Saints who raised from the dead persons who drowned, persons with mutilated bodies, persons who had been hanged, whose bodies had already decayed, been reduced to skeletons, or been buried for several years. They include children, unbaptized infants, unborn babies still in their mother's womb who needed to be baptized, persons executed for crimes, persons raised to testify in criminal cases or to testify to some religious truth, and persons who would have been condemned to Hell had they not been called back to earth for another chance. Also included are descriptions of Heaven, Hell and Purgatory given by temporarily dead persons who had been privileged to see those regions. Analyzes the authenticity of resurrection miracles according to the teaching of the Church - plus it describes other bodily wonders of the Saints, such as levitation, bilocation, and total abstinence from natural food and drink. Includes a critique of "post clinical death" experiences in the light of Catholic teaching. Contains over 60 pictures, which alone are worth the price of the book. 335pp. PB. Imprimatur. ITEM #10623 $18.50 Can be bought at: http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0895552515/102-0213362-1122519?v=glance or http://www.tanbooks.com/index.php/page/shop:flypage/product_id/253/
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MORE INFO ON THE MIRACLES LISTED ABOVE
PADRE PIO: http://members.aol.com/fmrega4/Flymonk.htm, http://www.ewtn.com/padrepio/man/index.htm, http://members.aol.com/goodyburk/padrepio.html, http://www.catholic-forum.com/saints/stp27comv.htm, http://www.padrepio.it/ing/vita.htm
MIRACLE OF THE SUN: http://www.catholic.net/rcc/Periodicals/Faith/1998-05-06/fatima.html, http://www.fatima.org/miracle.html, http://www.fatima.org/library/sc01pg16.html, http://hesemann.watchers.ca/fatimasun.html, http://www.fatima.org/hell.html (vision of hell), http://www.mess-s-antonio.it/MSAHOME/Ing/riviste/rivest/a2000/Mar/Art/lucia.htm ALSO SEE THE FAMOUS WARNER BROTHERS PRODUCTION “The Miracle of Our Lady of Fatima” 102 minutes. www.ignatius.com
JUAN DIEGO: http://www.queenofpeace.ca/Guadalupan_Image.htm, http://www.cin.org/guadchro.html (timeline) http://www.sancta.org/eyes.html (secret of the eyes), http://www.archatl.com/archbishops/donoghue/20011211.html, http://www.freerepublic.com/forum/a3a632ecd59e5.htm (the eyes) http://www.credopub.com/archives/2000/iss20001225/20001225p06.htm, http://www.geocities.com/franciscanhistory/OLOG.html http://home.inreach.com/bstanley/eye.htm, http://www.udayton.edu/mary/resources/guad_bib.html http://www.sancta.org/ http://www.virgendeguadalupe.org.mx/ (official Guadalupe web site: EN ESPANOL)
EUCHARISTIC MIRACLE in Lanciano: http://www.therealpresence.org/eucharst/mir/lanciano.html, http://www.acfp2000.com/Miracles/eucharistic.html http://www.frtommylane.com/stories/eucharist/miracles.htm, http://www.youthapostles.com/newsletters/2001-08.html, http://www.therealpresence.org/eucharst/mir/a3.html, http://www.thedivinemercy.org/devotions/euchmiracles.htm, http://www.acfp2000.com/Miracles/eucharistic.html, Recommended book: Eucharistic Miracles by Joan Carroll Cruz
Also, if you are a science buff, you might check out the book “The DNA of God” by microbiologist Dr. Leoncio A. Garza-Valdes, about the Shroud of Turin, the DNA on it, and the reasons the carbon dating tests, which led some to believe the shroud did not date back to Christ’s time, were wrong.
NINE APPROVED APPARITIONS OF MARY: http://www.theotokos.org.uk/pages/appdisce/nineapps.html
BRIEF SUMMARY OF 64 MIRACLES AT LOURDES, FRANCE (RECOGNIZED BY CHURCH) http://www.theworkofgod.org/Aparitns/Lourdes/Lourdes1.htm http://www.lourdes-france.org/upload/pdf/en_guerison.pdf?target=0 http://www.ewtn.com/library/MARY/ZLOURDES.HTM (the most recent Lourdes healing) http://avemaria.bravepages.com/articles/mar/alex.html (Nobel Prize winner witnesses healing at Lourdes)
LOURDES VISITOR SITE http://www.lourdes-france.com/index.php?page=menu&texte=1&old=&langage=en
Books on miracles: http://www.discountcatholicstore.com/new_page_6.htm, http://www.marianland.com/miracle.html, http://www.christianity-books.com/Raised_from_the_Dead_True_Stories_of_400_Resurrection_Miracles_0895552515.html
Info on miracles: http://www.barronseduc.com/0764154583.html
Please note: Belief in the miracles that have occurred since the time of the apostles is not binding on a Catholic. Only public revelation (revealed while Jesus and the apostles were alive) is binding. On the other hand, a Catholic cannot go wrong believing the miracles that have been officially approved and confirmed by the Catholic Church, because there is no possibility they did not occur.
NO MORE MIRACLES???
A Christian of another denomination told me he was taught that miracles cannot happen after the death of the apostles. Hmm….What I found out is that a small group of people started this rumor in the 16th century.
Catholic Answers puts its this way: “The original sixteenth century Protestant Reformers denied all private revelation—they had to, for all the miracles that had occurred and all the private revelations that had been received over the previous fifteen hundred years had confirmed rather than attacked the Catholic faith. The original Reformers’ actions were in direct disobedience to the binding command of the New Testament: "Do not quench the Spirit. Do not despise prophetic utterances. Test everything; retain what is good" (1 Thess. 5:19–21). [Source: http://www.catholic.com/library/Private_Revelation.asp)
St. Augustine, the greatest of the Church Fathers, revered by Catholics and Protestants alike, is just one of the many great theologians that tell us that miracles and private revelation certainly did continue in the Church after the apostles were gone. St. Augustine, who lived from 354 to 430 A.D , wrote:
the same city of Carthage lived Innocentia, a very devout woman of the highest
rank in the state. She had cancer in one of her breasts, a disease which, as
physicians say, is incurable. . . . This lady we speak of had been advised by a
skillful physician, who was intimate with her family, and she betook herself to
God alone in prayer. On the approach of Easter, she was instructed in a dream
to wait for the first woman that came out of the baptistery after being
baptized and to have her make the sign of Christ upon the sore. She did so, and
was immediately cured" (The City
of God 22:8 [A.D. 419]).
"For even now miracles are wrought in the name of Christ, whether by his sacraments or by the prayers or relics of his saints. . . . But who but a very small number are aware of the cure which was wrought upon Innocentius . . . a cure wrought at Carthage, in my presence, and under my own eyes? . . . For he and all his household were devotedly pious. He was being treated by medical men for fistulae, of which he had a large number. . . . He had already undergone an operation but clearly needed another. . . . [H]e cast himself down . . . and began to pray; but in what a manner, with what earnestness and emotion, with what a flood of tears, with what groans and sobs, that shook his whole body and almost prevented him speaking. . . . [And when the] surgeons arrived, all that the circumstances required was ready; the frightful instruments were produced; all look on in wonder and suspense. . . . [But the surgeon] finds a perfectly firm scar! No words of mine can describe the joy, and praise, and thanksgiving to the merciful and almighty God, which was poured from the lips of all with tears of gladness. Let the scene [of rejoicing] be imagined rather than described!" (ibid.).
"A gouty doctor of the same city, when he had given his name for baptism and had been forbidden the day before his baptism from being baptized that year by black woolly-haired boys who appeared to him in his dreams (and whom he understood to be devils), and when . . . he refused to obey them but overcame them and would not defer being washed in the laver of regeneration, was relieved in the very act of baptism, not only of the extraordinary pain he was tortured with, but also of the disease itself" (ibid.).
"What am I to do? I am so pressed by the promise of finishing this work that I cannot record all the miracles I know, and doubtless several of our adherents, when they read what I have narrated, will regret that I have omitted many which they, as well as I, certainly know. Even now I beg these persons to excuse me and to consider how long it would take me to relate all those miracles, which the necessity of finishing the work I have undertaken forces me to omit. . . . Even now, therefore, many miracles are wrought, the same God who wrought those we read of [in the Bible is] still performing them, by whom he will and as he will" (ibid.).
[Quotes were compiled by Catholic Answers. For more quotes on more early miracles in the Catholic Church, reported by other Church Fathers, see: http://www.catholic.com/library/Do_Miracles_Still_Occur.asp
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