The Guardian Angel: The Eucharistic Miracle of Ferrari Italy 1171
Another wonderful Eucharistic Miracle, and then Mary's connection to the Annunciation and the Incarnation. Thank You Mama. To Jesus through Mary, GregoryMary
This Eucharistic Miracle took place in Ferrara, in the Basilica of Saint Mary in Vado, on Easter Sunday, March 28, 1171. While celebrating Easter Mass, Father Pietro da Verona, the prior of the basilica, reached the moment of breaking the consecrated Host. At this point he saw that Blood gushed from the Host, staining the ceiling of the crypt above the altar with droplets. In 1595 the crypt was enclosed within a small shrine and is still visible today in the monumental Basilica of Santa Maria in Vado.
In March 28, 1171, the prior of the Canons Regular Portuensi, Father Pietro da Verona, was celebrating Easter Mass with three confreres (Bono, Leonardo and Aimone). At the moment of the breaking of the consecrated Host, Blood gushed forth from the Host and threw large drops on the ceiling of the small crypt above the altar. Histories tell of the “holy fear of the celebrant and of the immense wonder of the people who crowded the tiny church.”
There were many eyewitnesses who told of seeing the Host take on a Bloody color and having seen in the Host the figure of a Baby. Bishop Amato of Ferrara and Archbishop Gherardo of Ravenna were immediately informed of the event. They witnessed with their own eyes the miracle, namely “the Blood which we saw redden the ceiling of the crypt.”
The church immediately became a pilgrim destination, and later was rebuilt and expanded on the orders of Duke Ercole d’Este beginning in 1495.
There are many sources regarding this miracle. Among the most important is the Bull of Pope Eugene IV (March 30, 1442), in which the pontiff mentions the miracle in reference to the testimonies of the faithful and ancient historical sources. The 1197 manuscript of Gerardo Cambrense, conserved in Canterbury’s Lambeth Library is the oldest document that mentions the miracle. The miracle received recent attention in the “Gemma Ecclesiastica” (Budding of the Church) by historian Antonio Samaritani.
Another document which dates to March 6, 1404, is the Bull of Cardinal Migliorati, in which he grants indulgences to “those who visit the church and adore the Miraculous Blood.”
Even today, on the 28th day of every month in the basilica, which is currently under the care of Saint Gaspare del Bufalo’s Missionaries of the Most Precious Blood, Eucharistic Adoration is celebrated in memory of the miracle. And every year, in preparation for the Feast of Corpus Christi, the solemn Forty Hours devotion is celebrated. The eighth centenary of the miracle was celebrated in 1971.
The Blessed Virgin and The Holy Eucharist by Fr. John A Hardon, S.J.
There is no secret about how the Blessed Virgin is related to the Holy Eucharist. It is very simple: except for the Blessed Virgin, we would not have the Holy Eucharist.
The key to this relationship is the humanity of Jesus Christ. God as God, was present in the world from the dawn of creation. The same almighty power by which God brought the world into being is the same almighty power by which He sustains the world in existence and provides for its constant activity.
But something historic happened at the Annunciation. The moment Mary told the angel, "Be it done to me according to Your word," God began to be present in the world as man. The infant in Mary's womb was her God become Incarnate. It was the Word made Flesh. It was the Lord of the Universe become a human child.
It was from Mary that the Son of God took our human nature. It was from Mary that the Second Person of the Trinity received His humanity. It was through Mary that Jesus Christ, who is God from all eternity, became man, lived visibly on earth in Palestine and is now invisibly on earth in every church and chapel in the Catholic world where the Holy Eucharist is offered, received and reserved.
Mary's relationship to her Son has not changed since the Annunciation. As His Mother, she remains the Mother of Divine Grace, through whom He pours out His blessings on a sinful world. As St. Pope John Paul II observed in Redemptoris Mater, "Mary guides the faithful to the Eucharist."he immense wonder of the people who crowded the tiny church. There were many eyewitnesses who told of seeing the Host take on a Bloody color and having seen in the Host the figure of a Baby. Bishop Amato of Ferrara and Archbishop Gherardo of Ravenna were immediately informed of the event. They witnessed with their own eyes the miracle, namely “the Blood which we saw redden the ceiling of the crypt.”
The fact of the Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin Mary is related in Luke 1:26-38. The Evangelist tells us that in the sixth month after the conception of St. John the Baptist by Elizabeth, the angel Gabriel was sent from God to the Virgin Mary, at Nazareth, a small town in the mountains of Galilee. Mary was of the house of David, and was espoused (i.e. married) to Joseph, of the same royal family. She had, however, not yet entered the household of her spouse, but was still in her mother's house, working, perhaps, over her dowry. (Bardenhewer, Maria Verk., 69). And the angel having taken the figure and the form of man, came into the house and said to her: "Hail, full of grace (to whom is given grace, favoured one), the Lord is with thee."
Mary having heard the greeting words did not speak; she was troubled in spirit, since she knew not the angel, nor the cause of his coming, nor the meaning of the salutation. And the angel continued and said: "Fear not, Mary, for thou hast found grace with God. Behold thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and shalt bring forth a son; and thou shalt call his name Jesus. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Most High; and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of David his father; and he shall reign in the house of Jacob forever. And of his kingdom there shall be no end."
The Virgin understood that there was question of the coming Redeemer. But, why should she be elected from amongst women for the splendid dignity of being the mother of the Messiah, having vowed her virginity to God? (St. Augustine).
Therefore, not doubting the word of God like Zachary, but filled with fear and astonishment, she said: "How shall this be done, because I know not man?"
The angel to remove Mary's anxiety and to assure her that her virginity would be spared, answered:
"The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee and the power of the Most High shall overshadow thee. And therefore also the Holy which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God."
In token of the truth of his word he made known to her the conception of St. John, the miraculous pregnancy of her relative now old and sterile: "And behold, thy cousin Elizabeth; she also has conceived a son in her old age, and this is the sixth month with her that is called barren: because no word shall be impossible with God."
Mary may not yet have fully understood the meaning of the heavenly message and how the maternity might be reconciled with her vow of virginity, but clinging to the first words of the angel and trusting to the Omnipotence of God she said: "Behold the handmaid of the Lord, be it done to me according to thy word."
Since 1889 Holzmann and many Protestant writers have tried to show that the verses Luke 1:34-35, containing the message of conception through the Holy Ghost are interpolated. Usener derives the origin of the "myth" from the heathen hero worship; but Harnack tries to prove that it is of Judaic origin (Isaiah 7:14, Behold a Virgin shall conceive, etc.). Bardenhewer, however, has fully established the authenticity of the text (p. 13). St. Luke may have taken his knowledge of the event from an older account, written in Aramaic or Hebrew. The words: "Blessed art thou among women" (v. 28), are spurious and taken from verse 42, the account of the Visitation. Cardinal Cajetan wanted to understand the words:
"because I know not man", not of the future, but only of the past: up to this hour I do not know man. This manifest error, which contradicts the words of the text, has been universally rejected by all Catholic authors. The opinion that Joseph at the time of the Annunciation was an aged widower and Mary twelve or fifteen years of age, is founded only upon apocryphal documents.
The local tradition of Nazareth pretends that the angel met Mary and greeted her at the fountain, and when she fled from him in fear, he followed her into the house and there continued his message. (Buhl, Geogr. v. Palaest., 1896.) The year and day of the Annunciation cannot be determined as long as new material does not throw more light on the subject. The present date of the feast (25 March) depends upon the date of the older feast of Christmas (December 25).
The Annunciation is the beginning of Jesus in His human nature. Through His mother He is a member of the human race. If the virginity of Mary before, during, and after the conception of her Divine Son was always considered part of the deposit of faith, this was done only on account of the historical facts and testimonials.
The Incarnation of the Son of God did not in itself necessitate this exception from the laws of nature. Only reasons of expediency are given for it, chiefly, the end of the Incarnation. About to found a new generation of the children of God, The Redeemer does not arrive in the way of earthly generations: the power of the Holy Spirit enters the chaste womb of the Virgin, forming the humanity of Christ.
Many holy fathers (Sts. Jerome, Cyril, Ephrem, Augustine) say that the consent of Mary was essential to the redemption. It was the will of God, St. Thomas says (Summa III:30), that the redemption of mankind should depend upon the consent of the Virgin Mary. This does not mean that God in His plans was bound by the will of a creature, and that man would not have been redeemed, if Mary had not consented. It only means that the consent of Mary was foreseen from all eternity, and therefore was received as essential into the design of God.