Miracle of Lanciano

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The Miracle of Lanciano is officially recognized by the Catholic Church as a Eucharistic miracle.

History[edit]

In the city of Lanciano, Italy, around 700, a Basilian hieromonk was assigned to celebrate Mass in the small church of St. Longinus. Celebrating in the Latin Rite and using unleavened bread, the monk had doubts about the Real Presence of Jesus Christ in the Holy Eucharist.[1][2]

During the Mass, when he said the Words of Consecration ("This is my body. This is my blood"), with doubt in his soul, the priest is said to have seen the bread change into living flesh and the wine change into live blood which coagulated into five globules, irregular and differing in shape and size (the number supposedly corresponds to the number of wounds Christ suffered on the cross: one in each hand and foot from the nails, and the wound from the centurion's spear).

Investigations[edit]

Since 1574, various investigations of varying degrees of detail have been conducted upon the elements:

  • February 17, 1574 by Bishop Antonio Gaspar Rodríguez
  • 1636 by Father Serafino from Scanno
  • October 23, 1777 by Bishop Gervasone
  • October 26, 1886 by Bishop Petrarca
  • 1971, by Odoardo Linoli

According to Bob and Penny Lord, the first test in 1574 found that each of the five different "pellets of coagulated Blood", though varying in size, all weigh the same and always produced the same weight no matter how many are simultaneously weighed.[3]

Linoli's examination[edit]

The examination[4] in 1971 was performed by Odoardo Linoli, a professor in anatomy and pathological histology as well as chemistry and clinical microscopy,[5] and Ruggero Bertelli, a professor of the University of Siena. The report was published in Quaderni Sclavo di Diagnostica Clinica e di Laboratori in 1973.[6][7]

Linoli's conclusions[edit]

The following conclusions were drawn by Odoardo Linoli:

  • The flesh is real flesh and the blood is real blood
  • The flesh and the blood belong to the human species[8]
  • The flesh consists of the muscular tissue of the heart
  • In the flesh we see present in section: the myocardium, the endocardium, the vagus nerve and also the left ventricle of the heart for the large thickness of the myocardium. The flesh is a heart complete in its essential structure.[9]
  • The flesh and the blood have the same blood type, AB
  • In the blood there were found proteins in the same normal proportions (percentage-wise) as are found in the sero-proteic make-up of fresh normal blood[10]
  • In the blood there were also found these minerals: chlorides, phosphorus, magnesium, potassium, sodium and calcium
  • Both the flesh and the blood showed no evidence of preservatives (or other added chemical agents of any kind) being used.[1][3][11]

Current status[edit]

The Basilian monks kept custody of the elements until their departure in 1175. They were succeeded by Benedictine monks in 1176. The items were placed in different locations within the Church of St. Francis at Lanciano. They were kept in the Valsecca Chapel from 1636 until 1902 when they were relocated to a new altar.

The elements can still be seen today. The flesh, which is the same size as the large host used in the Latin Church, is fibrous and light brown in color and becomes rose-colored when lighted from the back. The blood consists of five coagulated globules and has an earthly color resembling the yellow of ochre.

Pictures and documents[edit]

Notes[edit]

Coordinates: 42°13′48″N 14°23′24″E / 42.23000°N 14.39000°E / 42.23000; 14.39000