Thursday, March 13, 2008

The Strange Case of the Vanishing Stigmata.

Well now, what do Padre Pio and Christine Gallagher have in common?
Neither of them appear to suffer from 'stigmata'.
From today's UK independent.

"The tomb was opened just after midnight, in the bitter cold. The Vatican did not want too many people around as it exhumed Padre Pio, a man whose millions of followers say he could foresee the future and be in two places at once. "As soon as we got inside we could clearly make out the beard," said Domenico D'Ambrosio, the archbishop who led the ceremony early on Monday morning. "The top part of the skull is partly skeletal, but the chin is perfect and the rest of the body is well preserved."

The feet were bare, as is the tradition for Capuchin monks. There was, however, a problem – a big one – for the clerics and medical experts peering at the body: no stigmata.

Neither his feet nor his hands showed any sign of the wounds expected of a man who the church says bled as Christ did on the cross – spontaneously and without cause, on and off for more than 50 years. Was this, as sceptics immediately claimed, proof that Padre Pio was a fake?

He died in 1968, aged 81, but the bleeding (and miracles recorded in his name) led to the monk being made a saint six years ago. One author has suggested he was a self-harmer who used carbolic acid to create the wounds, but after years of scorning him the Vatican now insists they were not caused by "external forces".
Born Francesco Forgione in a small town near Naples in 1887, he joined the Capuchin order and took a name that means "pious" in Italian. The wounds started to appear when he was 23, but their nature – and the cult that grew up around him – alarmed the Catholic authorities. Padre Pio was banned from celebrating mass in public; but one of those who made a pilgrimage to Foggia for confession with him was a young Pole who became Pope John Paul II – and who made Padre Pio a saint.

His image can be seen in windows and on vehicles throughout Italy. Seven million people a year visit his tomb at the church of Santa Maria delle Grazie in San Giovanni Rotondo, near the friary where he lived.

The body will be put on display for several months from April – even after Domenico D'Ambrosio was forced to say, after examining the body again in daylight on Monday: "The signs of the stigmata were not visible." And so the strange case of Padre Pio, closed on the authority of the last Pope, has been reopened along with his tomb."

I'd super like to say I'm surprised by this, but I am not. I am never bought into the cult of Pio, despite my paternal Grandmother's insistence that he be revered. Oh no, hand bleeding, even as a child struck me a absolutely the easiest sleight to pull off.
I am not surprised there is not a shred of evidence for this religious hokum, I am not that surprised when frauds, be they from this era or before, are exposed. I'm only irked at how long frauds can expect to get away with conning people and scamming them and hiding out in large mansions.
If Ppadre Pio didn't in fact have stigmata where does that leave Christine Gallagher and her bloody bloodiness? Isn't stigmata one of the 'sufferings' she endures while buying up real estate in America and Mexico, like our lady wanted, right Chrissie? Bank rolled by the devoted and the faithful and those seeking eternal life, which naturally Christine offers.

“Those who come to My House properly disposed will receive the graces of Solace and
Eternal Life….” (message of July 16, 2001)"

Ye-ah. And the Gallagher chain of prayer houses rolls ever onwards. there must be something to stigmata and suffering because even Jesus is getting in on the act. Apparently Christine, no wait, Jesus, felt Christine's Texas prayer house wasn't receiving enough funds. So he spoke out about it, through Christine's pet priest and side kick, Father McGinnity.

“Jesus said 'Father McGinnity is to tell the people that if the House of Prayer in Texas is not free of debt in the 9th month (the end of the month) of this year it is to be dissolved. Nothing is to be touched or taken from it and those leaving are to shake the dust from their feet. The greater part of that State will be leveled and torn to shreds. Those in a position to respond and bring the House to fruition have persevered in mocking Me and withholding the means of completing it. The world is in great danger and My message is disregarded. The people do not recognize the danger they are in.' ” (message of July 18th, 2006)


Stigmata, or the lack of stigmata, the show must go, step right up ladies and gentlemen, step right, up, see what you want to see, hear what you want to hear and pay, pay as you've never paid before.



Blogger Conan Drumm said...

"The greater part of that State will be leveled and torn to shreds."

Hmmph! Since when does Jesus speak American - leveled rather than levelled? And, the real giveaway this, everyone knows that when He prophesises He always says "shall" not "will". Pfft!

10:45 a.m.  
Blogger Conan Drumm said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

10:45 a.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

Dude, like el saviour can freaking jaw anyway he like pleases, aiiight?

10:48 a.m.  
Blogger Andraste said...

I don't think I'd mind if Texas was leveled. There. I said it.

11:28 a.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

I read a comment from a chap recently that went something like, 'I ain't American, I'm Texan.' I naturally assumed he meant this to be rather a good thing, though how I haven't quite worked out.

11:38 a.m.  
Anonymous The Bad Ambassador said...

Conan - Of course Jesus doesn't speak American, but you can't expect him personally hand write each and every dictum - he has far, far more important things to do. He clearly dictated his press release... err... statement to his dutiful servant.

And one can't expect a priest to be a PA/Secretary now can we. After all his job is to collect the money... ooops... do God's will.

Can you feel the love of Jesus.
Put your hands on the screen.
Touch the screen.
The power of Christ compels you.

11:50 a.m.  
Blogger Manuel said...

frauds, charlatans, priests, and Derren brown........wouldn't trust any of them

12:04 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

Say BA, with the right sort of steering I reckon you could minister to good folk like Conan and Andraste, who clearly need to want to be touched by the hand of our Lady. Now I'm on a direct line to her right now and she's telling me that if you send me 100 of your finest euros you can have eternally non chapped lips and then you can spread the gloss in our name. Huzzah! ( no amens)

12:05 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

BA, Manuel has besmirched Derren, who everyone knows is a force of the spirit.
He has to pay extra to be cleansed. HE can afford it, he gets tips.
In fatty's name, huzzah. Go now and never wear polyester again.

12:07 p.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"...Padre Pio, a man whose millions of followers say he could foresee the future and be in two places at once."

Far be it from me to suggest that if he'd been able to foresee the future, he'd have foreseen his exhumation? And rigged some eterna-stigmata device to keep the party going?

Someday I'm going to have to stop being so damn reasonable.

12:15 p.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh--and I'm not a fan of humorous t-shirts in general, but I was thisclose to publicly high-fiving someone I saw wearing one that said "I'LL mess with Texas."

12:17 p.m.  
Anonymous The Bad Ambassador said...

I'll start spreading the Gospel of Delightful Ankles right now.

May i suggest chocolate kimberly instead of communion. We'd probably need to sell it as being symbolic of something though.

12:18 p.m.  
Blogger Conan Drumm said...

Ah Missus, are we to make our cheques out to Padre Chapstick or Venerable Sr. Vaseline?

That astigmatic mendicant Benificent Botox can get in line.

12:27 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

How do we feel about Jaffa Cakes BA?

Grims, now come on! Where's the faith in that? Next you'll start questioning whether walking on water seems likely.

12:28 p.m.  
Blogger The Bad Ambassador said...

I don't know FMC - think of the protestants.

I'll leave that decision up to your good self - after all, you are the profit.

(Did I spell that correctly?)

12:30 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

Cheques? Snarf, I'll be sending the box of benevolent beauty balm out to your homes, no copper please. BA is allergic.

12:31 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

Right, Jaffas and fig rolls. We need them BA, you see, they represent our spirits, bound as we are on this earthly coil by our earthly bodies, but delicious and soaring with gooey spirit on the inside.
Oh and titles are not important, what is important is spreading the wealth...of knowledge we will accrue from our mission.
I'll start building the holy hellipad.

12:36 p.m.  
Blogger Conan Drumm said...

You must also have Jammy Dodgers, they're the biscuity equivalent of stigmata.

12:45 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

I like your thinking on this, if you donate 100 of your finest Euros you can have a blessed balm too.

12:55 p.m.  
Blogger Medbh said...

Conan, "the bisquity equivalent of stigmata" was hilarious.

My mom lives in an Italian neighborhood which celebrates a huge Padre Pio festival every year. I told her about the fake out with the acid and she had a good time ruining the fun but only because he's a modern saint and not "old school." Because they never faked it back then. Sigh.

1:04 p.m.  
Anonymous Primal Sneeze said...

I hope I never get stigmata - they'd make a right bollix of me laptop. And could you imagine the state of the steering wheel!

Don't suppose yer man, Pio, ever drove or blogged.

1:16 p.m.  
Blogger gimme a minute said...

Any good crucifier will tell you that you have to drive the nails through the wrists as the hands do not have the structure nor the strength to carry the weight of the full body.

The popular myth of nails in the hands came from a mis-translation from the Greek of the word 'χείρ' which can refer to both hand and wrists.

Stupid fakers, getting it wrong.

Cool wikipedia, making me look learned.

1:45 p.m.  
Blogger Manuel said...

pfft to Derren Brown

2:06 p.m.  
Anonymous nonny said...

What will happen to him, will he get un-canonized and will all the people who purchased Padre Pio merchandise be refunded?

One more thing, what is the crack with exhuming the dead? I thought the grave was suppose to be sacred. They should not do that. I'm gonna put a curse on my grave like Shakespeare

2:18 p.m.  
Anonymous Sam, Problemchildbride said...

Check out Creslo an Taffi Dollar "prosperity preachers from Georgia. The Lord wants us to be rich, folks! But in order to give you money, first He must take it away.

Scrutiny is starting to be aplied to these two popular shysters with reports emerging from disgruntled church insiders of financial irregularities for personal gain.


2:28 p.m.  
Anonymous Sam, Problemchildbride said...

<"You must also have Jammy Dodgers, they're the biscuity equivalent of stigmata.">


2:36 p.m.  
Blogger Quickroute said...

When I was bold young wee brat, me da used to tell me "I'll f'in crucify you if don't start behavin'!"
To think if he'd just followed thru I could be making a fortune now and have my own church and followers - feckin' hindsight!

2:51 p.m.  
Blogger Dr. James McInerney said...

Found the cake equivalent of the stigmata here.

3:25 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

Dollar is such a top preacher name. I believe I WILL be needing a zappy sounding name to head up my new ministry.
Something like Holy Mama Catz, or the Very Reverend Moniebegone. BA, can be called Blessed Scapegoat or most holiest of Patsies, not pastries mind. I don't want any confectionary confusions. There's been quite enough of that here today.

5:19 p.m.  
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