Written by Sherry
Thursday, 24 April 2008 06:12
Padre Pio's body will be on display, starting today, according to CNN, the BBC, the Telegraph, and this interesting MSNBC piece, etc.
A million pilgrims are expected to see the saint between now and mid-September
Per Catholic Online:
SAN GIOVANNI ROTONDO, Italy (CNS) - The body of St. Padre Pio will be exhumed, studied and displayed for public veneration from mid-April to late September, said the archbishop who oversees the shrine where the saint is buried.
Archbishop Domenico D'Ambrosio, papal delegate for the shrine in San Giovanni Rotondo, announced Jan. 6 that he and the Capuchin friars of Padre Pio's community had decided it was important to verify the condition of the saint's body and find a way to ensure its preservation.
"A further motive for rejoicing," he said, stems from the fact that the Capuchins, with Vatican approval, "have authorized the exposition and public veneration of the saint's body for several months beginning in mid-April."
In addition to marking the 40th anniversary of Padre Pio's death Sept. 23, 1968, the public veneration of his remains also will coincide with the 90th anniversary of the day on which he was believed to have received the stigmata, bloody wounds recalling the crucifixion wounds of Jesus.
According to the Capuchins, Padre Pio received the stigmata Sept. 20, 1918.
Per the New York Times:
Capuchin friars at the sanctuary at San Giovanni Rotondo in southern Italy, where Padre Pio's tomb is visited by seven million pilgrims annually, said that "parts of the body" had been found to be "intact". Archbishop D'Ambrosio said the body was in "surprisingly good condition. As soon as we got inside the tomb we could clearly make out the beard. The top part of the skull is partly skeletal but the chin is perfect and the rest of the body is well preserved. The knees, hands, mittens and nails are clearly visible.........If Padre Pio allows me, I might say he looks as though he just had a manicure''. The body would be placed in a glass covered coffin for veneration on 24 April for a period of "several months".
The exhumation of the saint, who was credited with over a thousand miraculous cures, had been approved by the Vatican's Congregation for the Causes of Saints. The Congregation's Prefect, Cardinal José Saraiva Martins, noted that the body of Pope John XXIII, who died in 1963, had also been exhumed when he was beatified, the step before sainthood. The body was found to be unusually well preserved.
Vatican officials said Padre Pio's body had been injected with formalin for burial but "no special measures" were otherwise taken to preserve his body.
Here are pictures of the thousands at San Giovanni Rotundo today. (Via AOL news)
One surprise: It is said that when Pio's body was exhumed, there was no sign of stigmata.
One of our C & G teachers had been healed from terminal cancer via St. Pio's intercession.
Anyone else have a Padre Pio story?