Every day, dozens of people visit a small home in Australia to witness tears flow from the eyes of a statue of Our Lady of Fatima. Sixteen year-old Sam Scevola from Rooty Hill, a town near Sydney, bought the statue in an antique shop. Shortly after bringing it home, he and his mother discovered drops of liquid rolling down the statue's face. "It took us a while to realize it was the statue that was sobbing," says Sam. "My mother and I both collapsed when the truth sank in."
The statue's crying has since been so constant it has forced the Scevolas to place cotton balls between the lady's praying hands and her body to collect the moisture. Church officials are aware of the crying statue, but have no comment until an investigation can be completed. (Source: The Sun, USA)
On 1 April 1997 a statue in the community of the Franciscan Sisters in Gebegamey in Benin, Africa, began weeping tears of blood. Vincent Metonnou, a journalist for the weekly Le Forum wonders why there are now so many similar "signs of sorrow" appearing all over the world: "Has the world lost the way?" He concluded that the Son of Man is probably saddened by mankind's villainy. (Source: Le Forum, Benin)
In just three weeks, 3,000 visitors from all over the world have travelled to the County Wicklow village of Grangecon, Ireland, to witness a statue of the Madonna which weeps blood. In early May, Mrs Murray, a retired postmistress, and her daughter noticed that their statue's eyes had filled with tears, and drops of blood had trickled from the left eye, leaving a brown stain. Many visitors claim to have seen the eyes water. Most say a sense of peace radiates from the statue. With people flocking to see the statue, Mrs Murray had welcomed travellers from 8am to 11pm every day. Recently, to cope with these crowds, the statue has been moved and placed in the village. (Source: Daily Mail, UK)
Ireland (1995) Update
In a back room of the Post Office in the tiny Southern Ireland village of Grangecon, County Wicklow, Post Mistress Mary Murray keeps her statue of the Virgin Mary. The painted statue stands about 12 inches high and is housed in a sealed glass case. BBC2's 40-minute TV programme Everyman of 18 December 1994 told how the statue had been found to be "crying blood". The statue, with its blood-stained cheeks, was clearly shown to BBC2 viewers.
When the phenomenon was first discovered, Mary Murray was persuaded to call the local radio station and tell listeners that "a miracle was happening in Grangecon". At 3pm every day, the glass case with its holy contents is taken in procession, to the accompaniment of Hail Marys, to be placed beside the outdoor shrine of the Madonna nearby. Pilgrims from all over the world have been to see the weeping statue, and pray. Many believe that the Madonna is using the phenomenon of tears to stimulate prayer and devotion, and small groups of believers meet regularly in Mary Murray's back room in the presence of the statue to say the Rosary and give each other spiritual support.
The manufacturers of the statue say that the adhesive used to fix its eyes can become moist in certain temperatures and this could explain the happening. The Vicar of the local Catholic church is non-committal - he says he looks for God, not in statues, but in people - but he does not condemn. Mary herself has not yet agreed to have the tears chemically tested, being unwilling to open the case and disturb the statue; she would not wish it to be tampered with, as, she asserts, happened with the Turin Shroud. (reported in Share International, March 1995)
The National Enquirer of America reported that between July and October of 1987, blood has flowed several times from the heart of a statue of Christ in the Italian city of Parma. Among the witnesses was a police officer and a journalist, the paper stated. Professor Vittorio Rizolli, a haematologist who examined the blood, is said to have confirmed that it was fresh human blood though very unusual as it contained no platelets. To the police officer, Giuseppe Melchiorre, the event was a turning point in his life. The National Enquirer quoted him as saying that he saw with his own eyes how blood streamed from the wooden heart of the statue. "I felt a shiver run up my spine and broke into a cold sweat. I staggered out of the abbey and, for the first time in my life, I prayed. I am now a firm believer and attend Mass." ( Source : National Enquirer, 1988 )
Italian Catholics regard it as a 'miracle': from a statue of Christ found by a policeman on the refuse belt of Sant'Antonio Abate near Naples, a red fluid streams. It first appeared in the eyes and then from head, hands, breast and feet. After a report about the statue by the Italian TV station RAI-2, thousands of people curious to see it went to Sant'Antonio Abate, creating a traffic jam. All for nothing, as the Bishop of Castelimare di Stabia had taken the statue away. (Source: Salzburger Nachrichten, Austria)
Italy (1995) - Civitavecchia
The latest in a long line of growing miracles connected with the Virgin Mary is a statue which weeps tears of blood in Civitavecchia, not far from Rome, Italy. The statue was brought back to Italy from Medjugorje for a family whose son suffered from poor health. A shrine was built for it in the family garden and the young daughter brought an offering of flowers and prayers to the Madonna daily. The child was the first to notice the Virgin's tears. The village priest was soon informed and the statue was taken away to be tested. The church is traditionally very sceptical and cautious about such miraculous events and as yet no pronouncement has been made. But the tears of blood have been analysed by Vatican scientific experts. Their findings: the blood has been found to be human blood, from a male - the DNA structure confirms this.
Other similar incidents have taken place and been reported on and investigated. The church remains silent while ordinary people continue to flock to the scenes of the miracles (although in some instances the statue or icon has been removed by church authorities for verification) to pray and offer thanks.
Miraculous signs, such as weeping or bleeding statues of the Virgin Mary, have appeared in the following places in Italy in recent years (the Vatican has yet to announce authentication): Potenza (May 1991); Nocere Inferiore (June 1992); Subiaco (January 1994); San Chirico, Raparo (May 1994); miracles attributed to Padre Pio (August 1994). Further sightings have taken place in Bergamo and Laziso in the north of Italy. A bas-relief of the Holy Virgin in Tivoli, east of Rome, has begun weeping. In Taranta Peligna in the Abruzzi mountains, a statue bought by a pilgrim in Lourdes has developed bloodstains on its face, throat, breasts, and hands.
Since this report was compiled, a new weeping statue of the Virgin Mary has been discovered at Castrovillari, Calabria. Tears of blood from this statue were also analysed and found to be human, belonging to the O-positive blood group.
Italy (1997) Civitavecchia Updates
"God can still heal if you pray to him to do so," said Pope John Paul II recently in his Sunday angelus message, which turned into a call to solidarity with the sick, the old and children. According to the Pope, "all of them are in danger of being regarded as a burden".
In Italy, this invitation from the Pope to pray for a miracle brings back into the public arena the claimed miracle of the Madonna in Civitavecchia, a village near Rome, where a small icon brought from Medjugorje weeps tears of blood.
A theological commission appointed by the Vatican has now accepted this as a miracle, according to an unconfirmed report. The statue was first seen weeping tears of blood, which was found to be human, in early 1995. The second anniversary of this miracle was attended by about 10,000 pilgrims. The local bishop surprised those present by blessing the occasion. He said that at least two people had been miraculously cured of cancer, one in Turin and the other in Toronto. In addition, political extremists, previously dedicated to violence, had been converted to peace and Christianity. Civitavecchia is now attracting thousands of pilgrims.
Observers have recalled the tears of blood of another statue of the Virgin Mary in Montreal, Canada, in 1985. They say this was followed by a near-epidemic of such phenomena in the case of other statues, as well as icons and crucifixes, in the city. Laboratory tests, commissioned by the Canadian Bishops Conference, found the tears to be blood mixed with fat, which melted when slightly warmed. (Source: The Tablet, UK; El Pais, Spain)
Bishop Girolano Grillo of Civitavecchia, 45 miles north of Rome, has appealed for priests from outside his diocese to join those already on duty at the makeshift shrine of the "Madonniana", a statuette of the Virgin Mary which is believed to have wept tears of blood.
He said that during recent weeks, the number of pilgrims had doubled, to more than 20,000 on some days, and was continuing to increase rapidly. He welcomed this, because he believed beyond doubt the phenomenon to be supernatural. The Virgin's blood-tears were shed for the ills and faithlessness of contemporary society, he said. The existing team of 10 priests was overwhelmed, not only by the need to distribute 2,000 hosts each at Mass, but by almost as strong a demand for confession beforehand. "They are hearing confessions in the open air, under the trees, wherever a space can be found."
Most of the pilgrims are arriving in fleets of coaches from the south of the country, but growing numbers are coming from abroad. (Source: The Tablet, UK)
Thousands of people are flocking to a remote Mexican village to receive healings from a weeping statue of the Madonna. The healing powers of the three-foot Madonna statue in San Tomas were discovered this summer by a 12-year-old girl praying for her mother who was dying of cancer. The girl discovered tears flowing down the statue's cheeks. "I thought it was the morning dew, so I touched the droplet," said Ana Avila, a sixth-grader. "It tasted salty, like a real tear." When Ana returned home, she found her mother in the kitchen preparing dinner and singing.
The woman had not been able to get out of bed for three months. Word quickly spread throughout the town, and other healings were reported. The story of the Miraculous Madonna was published in the Mexico City daily newspapers, and elsewhere throughout the world. "People have come from South and North America, from Europe and from Asia," says Father Amoros, the local priest. "And all have been healed." He says, "People arrive on stretchers and crutches, then walk away under their own power after praying to the Madonna and touching her tears. No one can explain the tears or the miracles. They've sent scientists from Mexico City and from the US. All say the tears are real, but no one knows where they come from or how they heal." (Source: The Sun, USA)
Puerto Rico (1994)
On a Sunday in June 1994, churchgoers at the Santa Rosa de Lima church in Rincon, Puerto Rico, saw tears falling from the cheek of the Virgin Mary statue. Since then, according to the priest Edgardo Acosta, tears regularly emerge from the statue's left eye and roll down her cheek to her neck. The event has created a large group of believers, and Acosta has had to rope off the area to keep people away. Church attendance has increased noticeably.
Those who believe in the Madonna miracle say the tears bring a message. One churchgoer, Maria Hernandez, said: "I believe this is a message from God." Another church attendee, Ada Perez, said: "I believe these tears are telling us we should change our life." Father Acosta said: "Some say this event has transformed their lives. Some say they have been cured of physical or psychological illness -- others say they have changed their way of life. But in the town of Rincon, you will still find sceptics who believe that this is a sign of the dark forces. I think heaven is giving us a very clear message: Change your life. Go back to God. Find yourself. Go back to the foundation of peace and happiness which is God. This is the foundation and wellspring of love." (Source: Primer Impacto Television, USA)
The quiet life of the small and secluded village of Mura, 50km north of Barcelona, was shaken when, on 16 March 1998, the local priest Lluís Costa discovered that a 70cm-tall white marble Madonna statue ìlooked as if she had been crying tears of bloodî. The statue had been brought from Medjugorje and exhibited on a square outside the village church on a pedestal 2.5 meters high. From one corner of each eye drops of blood had poured down her face until it coagulated, and the blood wasnít completely dry.
A statue of Our Lady of Lourdes in a Carmelite sisters' convent in Diego Martin, west Trinidad, is weeping tears of blood. According to the local press, the tears first appeared on 15 February, 1996. Professor Courtenay Bartholomew, a local medical consultant who has written a book on Marian apparitions, is said to have tested the blood and found it to be human. People from all parts of the country have been going to the convent to see the statue, although the Sisters only allow a few to enter at a time. The Archbishop of Port of Spain, Anthony Partin is to carry out an investigation of the phenomenon. ( Source: The Tablet, UK, 1997 )
USA - Las Vegas, (1998)
In the backyard shrine of Pablo Covarrubias stands a statue of the Virgin of Guadalupe brought from the Basilica in Mexico City. The Virgin regularly weeps real tears that are then harvested in little cotton balls and distributed to the faithful. According to Pablo, many supernatural healings have been documented, and on one very windy day, an apparition of Mary appeared in the sky above the shrine.
(Source: Los Angeles Weekly, USA)
An egg-shaped plaster image of the Madonna, six inches high, had hung for a year in the trailer home of Thomas and Margarita Holguin in Lewis, Kansas, without incident. But in the pre-dawn hours of 12 December 1996, Margarita Holguin turned on the lights and saw what looked like tears in the eyes of the statue of Our Lady of Guadalupe. The phenomenon lasted throughout the following day, and then the tears turned blood red, the couple said. "I don't know what to think about it all," said Mrs Holguin. "I have never seen anything like this before."
The phenomenon has drawn the attention of hundreds of people who have visited the Holguins' home. December 12, the day Mrs Holguin first noticed the tears, is the day on which the appearance of the Guadalupe Virgin in Mexico in 1531 is commemorated. The Holguins' pastor, Father William Vogel, said: "There is no doubt that there were tears, and it seemed as if blood was coming out of her eyes. I do not know what kind of natural explanation we can give to this." (Source: El Pais, Spain, Associated Press)
A Catholic parish priest in Virginia has attracted national media attention, as well as thousands of visitors to the local Catholic church, because of eyewitness accounts that he causes statues of the Virgin Mary to weep tears or blood, and that he has stigmata on his wrists and feet mirroring the wounds of Christ. The Rev. James Bruse, an unassuming associate pastor at St Elizabeth Ann Seton Church in Lake Ridge, Virginia, began experiencing these phenomena last December, and told his superior, the priest who heads the parish. The priest, Father Daniel Hamilton, reportedly saw the wounds on Bruse's wrists and a statue in Bruse's room producing blood. Since then he has seen the crying and bleeding statues, as well as Bruse's stigmata, numerous times, and says, "Of course I doubted it in the beginning ... And then... I saw some of this stuff he'd been talking about. It's true. That's all I can tell you. It's true. It's true."
According to parish officials and church parishioners, many times during, before, or after a church service, hundreds in attendance have seen the church's statue of the Virgin Mary cry. Other statues on the parish grounds have been seen to weep as well. After Bruse celebrated Mass at a nearby church, water reportedly began dripping from the church's wooden statue of the Virgin Mary. The phenomena occur irregularly, and Bruse sometimes has only to be in the statue's vicinity for the crying to begin. A Washington Post reporter who covered the story, and personally witnessed a crying statue while interviewing Bruse, wrote, "There's gotta be a trick here.
It's as if the water is just appearing right out of the plaster and then rolling downward. Proof positive you can be seeing something and still not believe you're seeing it." Some church parishioners, however, are in no doubt. Tom Saunders, a local church-goer, has photos of a weeping statue, and says one statue "cried in my hand". Saunders says he's seen at least a dozen statues cry. "When you see it, it's hard to believe at first," he says. "But it's there." (Source: Washington Post; USA Today)
Compiled by: Currently Unknown.