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January 24, 2005
No Explanation For Weeping Madonna: Panel

Despite my status as a practicing Catholic (definition of practicing: one who struggles to get it right), I do not usually put much stock in the more mystical aspects of my religion. The Age of Miracles seems to me a distant set of events from which we are meant to draw meaning, comfort, and inspiration. I tend to emulate Doubting Thomas when told of modern-day events.

That approach, on rare occasions, gets jolted by events that defy explanation. The AP reports on one such potential development in Italy, where scientists and theologians alike can provide no explanation of a statue of Mary that appeared to cry human blood for tears:

A review of the probe into a statue of the Madonna said to have shed tears of blood a decade ago concluded that the phenomenon has no human explanation, a newspaper reported Sunday.

The Civitavecchia diocese ordered theologians, historians and doctors to review the case and compile their conclusions in a document, according to Corriere della Sera, which published what it said was a summary of the findings.

Corriere, Italy's leading newspaper, said the document presented a critical analysis of all the testimonies given at the time, as well as all possible explanations for the phenomenon.

"Everything they (the experts) say unanimously indicates that in that corner of the Earth, at the gates of Rome, an event took place that has no human explanation and points at the mystery of the supernatural," Corriere wrote.

CAT scans and X-rays found no structure within the statue that could harbor and/or squirt out any substance, an important point, as eyewitnesses have seen the blood come from the eyes of the statue. The statue has wept at least 14 times. Scientists analyzed the blood and determined it to be that of a human male.

The Vatican remains quiet on this issue, as is normal; their position is that the Word has been completely revealed in Christ and needs no further revelation, but that God will choose to work in His own way when He sees fit. They likely will have little to say at all on the weeping Madonna. However, for those of us who tend to discount the mystical in favor of the practical, the questions raised by the Madonna of Civitavecchia will cause us to question our approach to faith just a little bit -- perhaps just like Thomas.

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Posted by Ed Morrissey at January 24, 2005 7:10 AM

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» Miracles? from Secure Liberty
Much of the world, particularly the Catholic world, relishes miracles. Miracles are a link to hope, they warm the soul. There are countless shrines to saints and to known appearances of the virgin Mary, for example at Lourdes, Fatima and Medjugorje. ... [Read More]

Tracked on January 24, 2005 8:50 AM

» Weeping Madonna. from Agape - Muncie Indiana
Captain Ed links to this news story today. A review of the probe into a statue of the Madonna said to have shed tears of blood a decade ago concluded that the phenomenon has no human explanation, a newspaper reported Sunday. The Civitavecchia dioc... [Read More]

Tracked on January 24, 2005 9:49 AM

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