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Top 16 Miracle Stories of 2016

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2016 was filled with incredible miracle stories from Mother Teresa finally getting her second miracle approved and then canonized to the recognition of a new (currently ongoing) Marian apparition as supernatural. Another apparition got reversed by the Vatican in historic fashion, a Eucharistic miracle was approved in Poland, and St. Januarius' blood liquefied unexpectedly for Pope Francis and then failed on the expected date. These were the top miracle stories of the year.

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16. Pope Announces Two Day Visit to Fatima to Celebrate Apparitions 100 Year Anniversary

The Vatican confirmed that Pope Francis will visit Portugal in 2017 to mark the 100th anniversary of the Marian apparitions of Fatima. The pope, who accepted the invitation made by President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa and the bishops of Portugal, “will go on a pilgrimage to the Shrine of Our Lady of Fatima from May 12-13,” the Vatican announced Dec. 17. The pilgrimage will mark the anniversary of the Marian apparitions, which first began on May 13, 1917, when three shepherd children reported seeing the Virgin Mary. The apparitions continued once a month until Oct. 13, 1917, and later were declared worthy of belief by the Catholic Church. Following the announcement, Father Carlos Cabecinhas, rector of the Fatima shrine told Agencia Ecclesia, the news agency of the Portuguese bishops’ conference, that the visit was a “cause for joy” for the shrine. “For the shrine of Fatima, it is a great joy to receive this confirmation of Pope Francis’ visit,” he said. Read the entire Catholic News Service article >


Join the Miracle Hunter on Pilgrimage to Fatima for the 100 Year Anniversary >

15. Italy's 'bleeding thorn' marks the coincidence of Good Friday, Annunciation

In March 2016, Pope Francis acknowledged a miracle worked through the intercession of Blessed Elizabeth, paving the way for her canonization.Cardinal Albert Decourtray, who was Bishop of Dijon from 1974 to 1981, was cured of cancer through the intercession of Blessed Elizabeth of the Trinity, a Carmelite nun of the 20th century – a miracle that allowed her beatification in 1984.The healing acknowledged by Pope Francis March 4 was that of Marie-Paul Stevens, a Belgian woman who had Sjögren's syndrome, a glandular disease.In 2002 Stevens “had asked Bl. Elizabeth to help her manage the extreme discomforts of the pathology she had, and in thanksgiving, because she felt like she had received graces … she travelled to the Carmelite monastery just outside Dijon,” Lilles said. “And when she got to the monastery, she was completely healed.” Read the entire CNA article >

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14. New Study: The Shroud of Turin and the Sudarium of Oviedo Covered the Same Person

The Shroud of Turin and the Sudarium of Oviedo “almost certainly covered the cadaver of the same person.” This is the conclusion from an investigation that has compared the two relics using forensics and geometry. The research was done by Dr. Juan Manuel Miñarro, a sculpture professor at the University of Seville, as part of a project sponsored by the Valencia-based Centro Español de Sindonología (CES) (The Spanish Center of Sindonology).

The study thus supports what tradition has held for more than two millennia: that the two cloths came from the same historical person, who, according to this tradition, was Jesus of Nazareth.
Read the entire Aleteia article >


Listen to the Miracle Hunter interview with Janice Bennett, Sacred Blood, Sacred Image : The Sudarium of Oviedo, New Evidence for the Authenticity of the Shroud of Turin

13. The Pope Emeritus labels “pure inventions” the latest speculations on third secret of Fatima

Although emeritus Pope Benedict XVI has been largely silent since his resignation, he indirectly stepped out from behind the shadows on Saturday, using a statement from the Vatican Press Office to insist that claims the famed “Third Secret” of Fatima has not been revealed in full “are pure inventions, absolutely untrue.”

Benedict’s statement came in reply to claims made by a German professor named Ingo Dollinger, who recently said that in 2000, then-Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger told him in confidence the third message transmitted by Our Lady of Fatima hadn’t been completely released.
Read the entire Crux Now article >

Listen to the Miracle Hunter interview with Kevin Symonds, Fatima expert and author of Refractions of Light

12. Our Lady of Good Help Receives National Shrine Designation

On Monday morning, Bishop David Ricken announced that the Shrine of Our Lady of Good Help has been designated as a National Shrine by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. The announcement came during a press conference with Bishop Ricken of the Diocese of Green Bay, Wisconsin, prior to celebrating the annual Mass at the Shrine for the Solemnity of the Assumption. This national designation “will enable more people to know” about the Shrine, and will give assurance to priests and pilgrims across the world that the Shrine has been “vetted” and approved by our bishops, said Bishop Ricken. The National Shrine of Our Lady of Good Help stands on the spot where Our Blessed Mother appeared to Adele Brise in 1859, imploring her to teach the children their Faith. The Virgin Mary told Brise, “Teach them their catechism, how to sign themselves with the sign of the Cross, and how to approach the sacraments; that is what I wish you to do. Go and fear nothing. I will help you.”
Read the entire Relevant Radio article >

Listen to the Miracle Hunter interview with Fr. Edward Looney, author of A Novena to the Queen of Heaven, Our Lady of Good Help

11. The World's Most Famous Exorcist, Fr. Gabriel Amorth, Dies

The renowned exorcist, Pauline Father Gabriele Amorth, has died at the age of 91. A priest of the diocese of Rome, Father Amorth was admitted to hospital a few weeks ago suffering from pulmonary complications, according to Italian media reports. His death was announced by the San Paolo group which has published many of his books. Born in Modena on May 1, 1925, Gabriele Amorth entered the Pauline congregation in Alba in 1947, five years after meeting its founder, Blessed Giacomo Alberione.  Ordained in 1951, he was appointed exorcist of the diocese of Rome in 1985 by Cardinal Ugo Poletti.

Often sought out by media around the world for his views on exorcism and understanding the struggle against evil, Father Amorth once confirmed that he thought Hitler and Stalin were “certainly” possessed by the devil, but denied that that fact removed their own personal responsibility for their actions.

Read the entire National Catholic Register article >


Listen to the Miracle Hunter interview with Kathleen Beckman about Fr. Gabriel Amorth's book, An Exorcist Tells His Story

10. Scientists Who Opened Christ's Tomb Detect Mysterious Readings, Support Shroud Theory

On October 26, 27 and 28, 2016, the marble slab that covers the tomb of Christ was removed. As the group of scientists and religious authorities had access to the place, rumors immediately began to run around. Some rumors claimed it was possible to perceive a “sweet aroma” emanating from the tomb, reminiscent of the olfactory manifestations commonly associated with both Marian and saintly apparitions. Secondly, it was alleged that some of the measuring instruments used by scientists were altered by electromagnetic disturbances. As soon as they were placed vertically on the stone in which Christ’s body rested, the devices either malfunctioned or ceased to work at all.

Read the entire Aleteia article >



9. No Movement on Medjugorje Case;
Tens of Thousands of Pilgrims Visit for 35th Anniversary

Bosnia and Herzegovina and Croatia, gathered on Saturday at masses and devotions in Me?ugorje which mark the 35th anniversary of the beginning of the apparitions of Our Lady, reports dalmacijanews.hr on June 25, 2016. According to the Information Centre “Peace” in Me?ugorje, from early morning masses of believers flow towards the parish church of St. James, where masses in 20 languages are being conducted from 5 am, and towards the Apparition Hill in Bijakovi?i. In addition to Croatian and Bosnian faithful, many pilgrims have arrived from Italy, Mexico, Brazil, Argentina, Switzerland, Lebanon, South Africa, Poland, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Sri Lanka, Slovakia, Spain, the United States. Romania, Hungary, Portugal, Korea and other countries.

Read the entire Total Croatia News article >

8. Pope Francis acknowledged a miracle for Carmelite nun Blessed Elizabeth of the Trinity

In March 2016, Pope Francis acknowledged a miracle worked through the intercession of Blessed Elizabeth, paving the way for her canonization.Cardinal Albert Decourtray, who was Bishop of Dijon from 1974 to 1981, was cured of cancer through the intercession of Blessed Elizabeth of the Trinity, a Carmelite nun of the 20th century – a miracle that allowed her beatification in 1984.The healing acknowledged by Pope Francis March 4 was that of Marie-Paul Stevens, a Belgian woman who had Sjögren's syndrome, a glandular disease.In 2002 Stevens “had asked Bl. Elizabeth to help her manage the extreme discomforts of the pathology she had, and in thanksgiving, because she felt like she had received graces … she travelled to the Carmelite monastery just outside Dijon,” Lilles said. “And when she got to the monastery, she was completely healed.” Read the entire CNA article >



Listen to the Miracle Hunter interview with Dr. Anthony Lilles, academic dean of St. John's Seminary in Camarillo

7. Rules for Canonization Miracles Changed by Pope Francis

In an effort to ensure transparency as well as historical and scientific accuracy, Pope Francis has approved revised norms for the Congregation for Saints' Causes regarding medical consultations on healings alleged to be miracles.

Among the regulations published by the Vatican Sept. 23 was the requirement that the medical panel have a quorum of six experts and that a two-thirds majority is needed to approve a statement declaring a healing has no natural or scientific explanation. Previously, the declaration -- a key step in a pope's recognition of a miracle attributed to the intercession of a candidate for sainthood -- required the approval of a simple majority of the consultation team members present. Read the entire Catholic News Service article >


6. Saint Januarius Blood Liquefies Unexpectedly, Then Does Not

The blood of St Januarius has failed to liquefy at the expected time prompting concerns about what it might signify. St Januarius was a Bishop of Naples who is believed to have been martyred around the year 305 during the Diocletian persecution. His blood is kept in a sealed glass ampoule in Naples Cathedral and traditionally liquefies three times a year: on September 19, December 16 and the Saturday before the first Sunday of May. But during Mass at the Royal Chapel at Naples Cathedral on Friday, the Abbot of the Chapel, Monsignor Vincenzo De Gregorio, revealed that the blood had failed to become liquid, according to reports. The Abbot asked the faithful to keep praying while waiting but by 7.15pm, the vial was returned to the shrine, “undoubtedly solid,” as stated by Abbot Vincenzo.

Read the entire Catholic Herald article >



Listen to the Miracle Hunter interview with Elizabeth Ficocelli, author of Bleeding Hands, Weeping Stone

5. Proliferation of Bleeding Virgin Mary Statues Worldwide

Statues around the world have been weeping human tears and tears of human blood in record numbers including a statue of the Virgin Mary in Fresno, Calif. which appears to be weeping miraculous tears, according to witnesses. The family that owns the statue says the tears have been coming and going for about the past year and a half. According to witnesses, the tears appear to well up in Mary’s right eye and stream down her face. Maria Cardenas, owner of the statue, placed a glass under the statue's chin to collect the apparently miraculous tears and share them with people who come to see it.

Read the entire Catholic News Agency article >





Listen to "Miracle Hunter" Michael O'Neill interviewed on The Dan Cheely Show on Relevant Radio

4. Bishop-Approval of Lipa Apparitions Nullified by Vatican in Historic Fashion

As it currently stands, the apparitions of Mary in Lipa – known as Mary, Mediatrix of all Grace – are officially considered “not supernatural in nature” by the Holy See. The highest recognition that the Catholic Church gives to an alleged miracle is that it is “worthy of belief.” If investigations determine an event to be fraudulent or lacking in supernatural character, a rejection may be issued. Alternatively, the Church may declare that there is nothing contrary to the faith in a supposed miraculous phenomenon – but without making a determination on whether a supernatural character is present. However, in an unprecedented move in this case, the Lipa apparitions are not considered supernatural, but local devotion is still allowed. “I believe it to be the singular case in history where you have a negative judgement, but the devotion is allowed,” Michael O’Neill, a Catholic miracle researcher and author who runs the website miraclehunter.com, told CNA. Read the entire Catholic News Agency article >


Listen to "Miracle Hunter" Michael O'Neill interviewed on The Drew Mariani Show on Relevant Radio

3. Eucharistic Miracle Declared Authentic in Poland

On Christmas Day 2013 at St. Hyacinth’s Shrine in Legnica, an industrial city of 100,000 in southwest Poland, a priest accidentally dropped a consecrated Host on the floor. In accordance with Church procedures, the Host was placed in a dish filled with holy water to dissolve. After two weeks, the Communion wafer dissolved only partially, and a red substance appeared on it. The bishop of Legnica at the time, Stefan Cichy, formed a committee to study this unusual phenomenon. Two independent forensic medicine departments from universities in Wroclaw and Szczecin studied a sample of the Host. Researchers from Szczecin found human DNA, as well as tissue from the human heart, with alterations that frequently appear in a state of agony. Read the entire National Catholic Register article

Listen to the Miracle Hunter interview with Elizabeth Ficocelli, author of Bleeding Hands, Weeping Stone


2. Second Miracle Found, Mother Theresa Canonized

In the end, two miracles were approved. The first took place in West Bengal, India, and involved the healing of an Indian woman, Monica Besra, whose abdominal tumor was so severe that her doctors abandoned hope of saving her. Taken into the care of the Missionaries of Charity, she continued to decline and endured such agony from the tumor that she could no longer sleep. On the one-year anniversary of Mother’s passing, the sisters at the home placed a Miraculous Medal that had been touched to the body of Mother Teresa on Besra’s stomach. The suffering woman fell asleep, and when she woke up, her pain was gone. Doctors examined her and found the reason why: The tumor had disappeared completely. A board of medical specialists worked with the Congregation for the Causes of Saints to study the alleged miracle. After assessing the records and interviewing the medical staff involved, the committee determined that the healing was medically inexplicable. Pope John Paul approved the miracle on Dec. 20, 2002, barely five years after Teresa’s death.

Read the entire National Catholic Register article >

Listen to the Miracle Hunter interview with Fr. Brian Kolodiejchuk, the vice-postulator for Mother Teresa's canonization cause

1. San Nicolas Apparitions Declared Supernatural

Bishop Hector Cardelli of San Nicolas in Argentina’s Buenos Aires province made the announcement May 22 at the conclusion of a Mass during the well-attended pilgrimage to the Shrine of Our Lady of the Rosary of San Nicolas. The bishop has investigated the contents of the apparitions through 1990.

“(I)n my twelfth year of pastoring San Nicolas and, having followed with faith and responsibility the Marian events that I have known about since the very beginning, I have reached the decision to recognize them for my diocese,” Bishop Hector said.

“I recognize the supernatural nature of the happy events with which God through his beloved daughter, Jesus through his Most Holy Mother, the Holy Spirit through his beloved spouse, has desired to lovingly manifest himself in our diocese.”

Read the entire Catholic News Agency article >

Listen to "Miracle Hunter" Michael O'Neill interviewed on Kresta in the Afternoon on Ave Maria Radio


Listen to "Miracle Hunter" Michael O'Neill interviewed on The Jennifer Fulwiler Show on Sirius XM

Other noteworthy stories: Alleged apparitions in Borg-in-Nadur receive negative judgment; Bishop reiterates that popular Puerto Rican devotion at Sabana Grande not approved; Miraculous statue in Philipines receives canonical coronation; Pope Francis visits miraculous image of Czestochowa; Did Padre Pio help this baby girl make a miraculous recovery?; $25 million shrine to Vietnamese Marian apparition Our Lady of La Vang planned for new Christ Cathedral;

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