THE RELIQUARY OF
MIRACULOUS IMAGES OF
THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

In most of her Apparitions, the Mother of God leaves no relics behind. Indeed, Our Lady is usually only visible to a single or to a small group of visionaries. For example, in the Apparitions at Lourdes Our Lady was only visible to St. Bernadette, and at Fatima, with the exception of a few miracles performed through her intercession, the only ones able to view the Apparitions were a group of children.

There are times, however, when Our Lady leaves behind proof of her visitations, often in the form of miraculously appearing images. At other times, she works through images already in existence, often animating them. It is these images that this page focuses on.

Please note that not all of these Apparitions have been approved by the Catholic Church or Orthodox Churches. This does not mean that they have been officially condemned, but merely that they have not received the official approval of the Papal or episcopal commissions required to validate such a miracle. Notations mark those Apparitions which have been approved and the level of approval.

This page is divided into three sections:


Miraculously Appearing Images

Quite a number of miraculously appearing images have been reported, from the Marian image reported in the rust stains on a car in Elsa, Texas, to the image in the windows of an office building near Tampa Bay, Florida. While all of these are interesting (and I will be preparing a page of them), the great degree of subjective interpretation required and the ambiguity of these pictures leads me to leave them out of this particular discussion. The images reported on this webpage are limited to those which do not require such subjective interpretations, and are largely those approved by the Church.

The Tilma of Juan Diego, bearing the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe (Papal Approval)


Image from
the Our Lady of Guadalupe Web Site.

A A large photograph of Our Lady of Guadalupe on Juan Diego's Tilma is also available. This is located remotely at the Our Lady of Guadalupe Web Site.

In a series of four Apparitions, Our Lady appeared to Bl. Juan Diego, a young Indian convert. Our Lady of Guadalupe has become one of the most popular Apparitions of Our Lady, and she has become especially beloved in the Americas, and, indeed, she has been named Patroness of the Americas. Barely a Catholic in Texas cannot tell a questioner her story, and she is especially loved among the Hispanic population. She is also venerated the world over by both Roman Catholics and the Orthodox, and the pageholder knows a Catholic priest who has seen an almost life-size image of Our Lady of Guadalupe hanging in an Irish church. After the last Apparition to Bl. Juan Diego, returning to the bishop with the sign he had requested of the Virgin (without telling Bl. Juan), Bl. Juan opened his tilma and a cascade of Spanish roses fell to the ground. The bishop too fell to the ground upon his knees, not only because the sign had been fulfilled, but also because, imprinted upon Bl. Juan Diego's tilma was a miraculous image of Our Lady with Aztec features.

A tilma, also known as an ayate, is a cloth worn about the shoulders used by the Aztec population for a number of purposes, from protection against the cold (the Apparition occurred in December) to the carrying of objects, such as the Spanish roses. An ayate is pictured below.


An ayate or tilma.
Image from the Our Lady of Guadalupe Web Site.

The oldest known manuscript describing this Apparition is the Nican Mopohua manuscript, also known as the Huei Tlamahuitzoltica, which was written in the Aztec language of Nahuatl by the Indian scholar Antonio Valeriano. This was first printed in 1649, and the 1649 edition is pictured below. The original is now lost.


Image from the Our Lady of Guadalupe Web Site.

This manuscript is available online as follows:

Valeriano, Antonio. 1649. Nican Mopohua.
This file is located remotely on the Our Lady of Guadalupe Web Site.

The Holy Cross Press has available online a book discussing the importance of Our Lady of Guadalupe in the Church today. This book may also be ordered in print, and is available online as follows:

Holloway, James David, Jr. 1991. Our Lady of Guadalupe: The Last Gospel. Dallas, Texas: Holy Cross Press.
This file is located remotely at the Holy Cross Press homepage.

An Ethiopic Miracle Story

A number of miracle stories from Sir E. A. Wallis Budge's translation and compillation of Ethiopic miracle stories One Hundred and Ten Miracles of Our Lady Mary: Translated From Ethiopic Manuscripts (London: Humphrey Milford, Publisher to the Oxford University Press, 1933) have to do with miraculous images. One of these, that of a miraculously appearing portrait, is reproduced below. (Others are reproduced under Ethiopic Miracle Stories) in the Animated Images section of this document. The description came from the book's table of contents, and the Roman numerals to the right are the page numbers for this description.

[xxi]

LXX. How the VIRGIN MARY showed Archbishop BASIL a picture of herself which had been painted by the angels . . . 268


Animated Icons

Please select a topic.

General Information
Akita, Japan (a blood weeping statue)
Ballinspittle, Ireland (a moving statue)
Cicero, USA (a weeping icon)
Civitavecchia, Italy (a blood weeping statue)
Conyers, USA (a weeping icon)
Damascas, Syria (a weeping icon)
Diego Martin, Trinidad (a blood weeping statue)
Eliakon, Cyprus (oil weeping icons)
Ethiopic Miracle Stories
Kenner, USA (a weeping painting)
Klokochovo, Slovakia (a weeping icon)
Marijapovch (or Mariapoch), Hungary (a weeping icon)
Mura, Spain (a blood weeping statue)
New Sarov, USA (a myrrh weeping icon)
Phoenix, USA (a blood weeping statue)
Tampa Bay, USA (six weeping icons)
Toronto, Canada (a weeping icon)
Troy, USA (an oil-seeping icon)

General Information

The phenomenon of weeping icons and statues, particularly of Mary, but also of Christ and the saints, is a relatively commonly reported supernatural occurance, particularly among the Orthodox. Weeping and moving statues are also evident among Roman Catholics. Church approval of these Apparitions among Catholics is very uncommon, due to the high amount of scientific evidence required for confirmation in the Church. The weeping bust of Our Lady of Syracuse in Italy, which was approved by Pope Pius XII, is among these few. (A section devoted to this Apparition is forthcoming.) Among the Orthodox, an icon is typically exorcised and, if it continues to weep, it is considered not to be a demonic manifestation. After the exorcism the Faithful are free to venerate Mary through the object. It seems that among both groups it is not a required tenant of the Faith to believe the manifestation to be the result of Divine intervention.

The phenomenon of weeping icons is discussed in:

Moore, Marvin. 1997. The Coming Great Calamity. Pacific Press Publishing Association.

Chapter 1: Paradigm Shift is available online.

Weeping icons as the object of pilgrimages is discussed in:

Hardenbrook, John Weldon, Fr. "The Place for Pilgrimage." Again magazine, vol. 18, no. 1.
This file is located remotely at Pilgrim's Progress. It is also available online at The Orthodox Christian Foundation.

The New York Area Skeptics has compiled a list of "Readings Recommended by the New York Area Skeptics: Weeping Madonnas & Other Quasi-Religious Beliefs."
This is located remotely at New York Area Skeptics homepage.

A number of supposed weeping and moving as well as other miraculous images of Mary, as well as of Jesus, are discussed at The Miracles Page, specifically under the categories "Signs of the Holy Mother," "Weeping Statues," and "Images and Icons."

Akita, Japan
A Blood-Weeping Statue

From 1973 to 1981 a statue of the Virgin Mary reportedly bled and wept in Akita in Northern Japan. The story of the Apparition is described in the following video:

Hill of Redemption. Ignatius Press Videos. Description.

Palmieri, Daniele. 1996, October. "Akita Corrections." Inside the Vatican.
This file is located remotely at the Inside the Vatican homepage.

Ballinspittle, County Cork, Ireland
A Moving Statue

Scientists attempting to explain the phenomenon of the statue at Ballinspittle -- which has been observed by crowds to sway back and forth -- have claimed that in reality it was the people swaying and not the statue. This can be read about in the following article:

Boxer, Sarah. 1985, October. "Those Who Sway Together Pray Together." Discover, v. 6, pgs. 18-19.

Ms. Boxer's name does not appear anywhere in the article, but is provided by the Academic Periodicals Catalog on the University of Texas Homepage.

According to a reporter for Fate magazine, after its repair the statue at Ballinspittle has begun to move again. This was discussed in Share International as follows:

"Madonna Statue at Ballinspittle Rocks On" (in the column "Signs"). 1996, April. Share International.

Cicero, Illinois, USA
A Weeping Icon


This image is taken from:
"Bus Trip to Cicero." 1997, 19 October.
St. George Antiochian Orthodox Christian Church Bulletin.

Formerly the headquarters of Al Capone and still a hotbed of Mafia activity, in a discussion a friend of mine once said of Cicero, "That place is evil." However, Cicero has also become a hotbed of religious activity, thanks to the reported weeping of the Miraculous Lady of Cicero. The Weeping Icon of Our Lady of Cicero is preserved at the Shrine of the Miraculous Lady of Cicero in St. George Antiochian Orthodox Christian Church, which can be contacted at the address below:

St. George Antiochian Orthodox Christian Church
1220 South 60th Court
Cicero, IL. 60804
Phone (708) 656-2927
Fax (708) 656-1166
Homepage: http://www.stgeorgecicero.org/index.html

The church is open daily 11:00 am to 6:00 pm. Saturday Vespers are at 6:00 p.m.; Sunday Matins are at 9:30 a.m.; the Sunday Divine Liturgy are at 10:30 a.m., typically ending at 12:30.

The validation of this weeping by the local Antiochian bishop was criticised by the local atheistic skeptics organisation as follows:

Bloomberg, David. 1994, June. "Who's Crying Now?" (From the column "REALLity Check.") The REALL News (official newsletter of the Rational Examination Association of Lincoln Land), vol. 2, no. 6.
This file is located remotely.

On 10 December 1997 the Church of St. George was hit by a fire. Fortunately the icon of Our Lady of Cicero was saved, and is now enshrined in the St. George Church Offices pending repairs to the church. The fire can be read about as follows:

"Fire in Cicero." (Antiochian Orthodox Church News Release.)
This file is located remotely at the Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of North America Homepage.

"Fire Damage at St. George Antiochian Orthodox Church.
This file is located remotely at St. George Antiochian Orthodox Christian Church homepage.

"Fire at the Shrine of the Miraculous Weeping Icon in Cicero." 1997, 21 December. St. George Antiochian Orthodox Christian Church Bulletin.
This is located remotely at St. George Antiochian Christian Church homepage.

Civitavecchia, Italy
A Blood-Weeping Statue

Guénois, Jean-Marie. 1997, April. Leaning Toward a Conclusion." Catholic World Report.
This file is located remotely at the Catholic World Report homepage.

McDonald, Paul J., Fr. 1997, June. "The Authority of Miracles" (letter). Catholic World Report.
This file is located remotely at the Catholic World Report homepage.

"Italy: Debate Still Swirls on Madonna Statue" (in the column World Watch"). 1996, April. Catholic World Report.
This file is located remotely at the Catholic World Report homepage.

"Italy: Caution on Weeping Statue" (in the column W orld Watch"). 1997, March. Catholic World Report.
This file is located remotely at the Catholic World Report homepage.

According to the Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung of Germany, the blood on the Little Madonna of Civitavecchia has been confirmed human. The weeping Madonna has been designated a place of pilgrimage by Bishop Girolamo Grillo. (The bishop is, however, awaiting Vatican approval of the weeping statue.) This is reported as follows:

1998, May. "Genuine Tears" (in the column "Signs"). 1998, May. Share International.

A number of articles and, more recently, a book by journalist Enrico Malatesta entitled She Wept Into My Hands have reported on the weeping statue of Civitavecchia, and according to Fabio Gregori, the statue's owner, some of what they have reported was only told to members of the investigating committee of theologians in confidence. Mr. Gregori expressed some disappointment in this in May of 1997. This is reported as follows:

"Publicity 'Leaks' In Story of Weeping Statue." 1997, 21 May. Catholic Online Vatican Update.
This file is located remotely in the Catholic Online Daily News Briefs Archive.

The article is repeated in a slightly different format as follows:

"Publicity Leaks In Story of Weeping Statue." 1997, 21 May. Catholic World News Service Daily News Briefs.
This file is located remotely at the Catholic World News Updates Homepage.

Conyers, Georgia, USA
A Weeping Icon


Photo by "Aaron." Taken from
the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist Homepage.

Associated with the Marian Apparitions and other phenomena claimed to be occuring in Conyers is an icon of Our Lady which reportedly has begun to weep. More information on the Conyers Apparitions is to be found at the Conyers Website, maintained by the Apostolate which has sprung up around the claimed visionary, Nancy Fowler. A testimonial to the weeping icon can be found in the following article:

Aaron. 1996, 6 July. Testimonial Letter ["The Eucharist and the Weeping Icon"].
Located remotely at the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist Homepage.

Damascas, Syria
A Weeping Icon


Our Lady of Soufanieh.
Taken from the
Our Lady of Soufanieh Unity of Christians page.

Mary "Myrna" Kourbet Al-Akhras, and inhabitant

Diego Martin, Trinidad

A weeping statue in the Convent of Corpus Christi here has reportedly begun to weep blood. Weeping statue pictures.

Eliakon, Cyprus
A Weeping Icon of Panagia-Theotokos-Paranythia


This image is taken from the
Sts. Constantine & Helen Greek Orthodox Church Homepage.

The weeping icon of Panagia-Theotokos-Paranythia, Monastery of Eliakon, near Kykko, Cyprus, began weeping an oil "like the sap of a pine tree" in 1997. Tears have also reportedly come from the image of the Christ Child which the Virgin holds. A number of other icons around Cyprus soon began weeping as well. The strange smell exuded from the tears is, acording to a monk at the monastery, referred to in the Orthodox Church there as "evodia." This is discussed in the following:

Hadjicostis, Menelaos. 1997, 7 February. "Weeping Icon Moves a Nation." Cyprus News Agency: News in English (AM).
This is located remotely at the Cyprus News Agency homepage.

"Thousands Flock to See a Weeping Icon at the Kykkos Monastery, Cyprus." Reuters News Service.
Located remotely at the Marian Apparitions Page of the Saint Joseph Software webpage.

Serfes, Demetrios, Fr., compiler. "Monasticism in Cyprus."
Located remotely at the Sts. Constantine & Helen Greek Orthodox Church Homepage.

Ethiopic Miracle Stories

A number of miracle stories from Sir E. A. Wallis Budge's translation and compillation of Ethiopic miracle stories One Hundred and Ten Miracles of Our Lady Mary: Translated From Ethiopic Manuscripts (London: Humphrey Milford, Publisher to the Oxford University Press, 1933) have to do with animated icons. These are reproduced below. The descriptions come from the book's table of contents, and the Roman numerals to the right are the page numbers for these descriptions. The reference to healings from milk from the breasts of Mary seems to be peculiar to Ethiopia, and is found in several of the miracles recounted in Sir Wallis Budge's book.

Another Ethiopic miracle story from this book, Miracle LXX, (How the VIRGIN MARY showed Archbishop BASIL a picture of herself which had been painted by the angels) is recounted under Miraculously Appearing Images above.

[xix]

LXI. How a certain ISHMAELITE was converted when he saw oil and milk flowing from the breasts of a picture of the VIRGIN MARY. See Miracles Nos. LXV and LXVIII . . . 222

[xx]

LXV. How a certain JEW of CONSTANTINOPLE defiled a picture of the VIRGIN MARY, and how, when the picture was cleansed and restored to its place in the church, from it ran oil which became the means of healing many sick folk. See Miracles Nos. LXI and LXVIII . . . 241

LXVIII. How the painted figures of the VIRGIN MARY and CHRIST on an eikon bled when a JEW cast the board into a pit, and how the magistrate had the JEW burnt alive. See Miracles Nos. LXI and LXV . . . 262

[xxii]

XCII. How an image of the VIRGIN MARY wept for the sins of the world . . . 312

[xxiv]

CV. How the image of the VIRGIN MARY in a certain church bowed to the monks when they saluted her . . . 337

Kenner, Louisiana, USA
A Weeping Icon

A painting of Our Lady at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church reportedly began weeping around September of 1995. As yet the Church apparently has not conducted an official investigation. This was discussed in Share International as follows:

"Weeping Painting of the Virgin Mary" (in the column "Signs"). 1996, April. Share International.

Klokochovo, Eastern Slovakia
The Weeping Icon of Our Lady of Klokochovo


Image taken from the
Carpatho-Rusyn Spirituality homepage.

The icon of Our Lady of Klokochovo has had a long and strange history, and the original weeping icon is now lost. In 1670, during the campaigns of the Hungarian Calvinist pillagers, the icon of Our Lady of Klokochovo began to weep. The icon was slashed by the bayonette of one of the "crusaders," enraged by the icon's tears, as they swept through the Church of the Holy Dormition of Our Lady in Klokochovo, but was heroically saved by one of the townspeople and hidden in the nearby woods as the church burned. The icon was translated for safekeeping to the castle of Mukachevo by the Countess Bathory, following a stay in the town hall of Prjashev. But rather than being translated to the town's church, as it was supposed to be, the icon was kept within the Rakoczi family. It was confiscated by the imperial court in Vienna in 1711, and after protests a copy was made for the town hall of Prjashev. This was donated to the bishop of Prjashev in 1904 and restored and placed in the bishop's chapel 12 August 1907. The parishoners of Klokochovo protested that he return the copy to them, but instead he had a third copy made and enshrined in the church in 1913. Rome issued indulgences to pilgrims to this third icon in Klokochovo in 1946. The original icon is now lost. All this is discussed in the pamphlet below:

"The Weeping Icon of Klokochovo." Byzantine Leaflet Series no. 59. 1993, October. Pittsburgh, PA: Byzantine Seminary Press.
This file is located remotely at the Carpatho-Rusyn Spirituality homepage.

Marijapovch (or Mariapoch), Hungary
The Weeping Icon of Our Lady of Marijapovch


Image taken from the
Carpatho-Rusyn Spirituality homepage.

A larger image may also be viewed. This larger image is located remotely in the St. Joseph Orthodox Church Icon Library.

One of the most beloved of icons of the Carpatho-Rusyns is that of Our Lady of Marijapovch, which first wept 14 November 1696 and again on 8 to 19 December 1696. This icon was taken by Leopold I, Emperor of Austria, but it was replaced with a copy through the kindness of Count Carbelli, a chamberlain of Emperor Leopold, who witnessed the devotion paid to the icon as it stopped at railway stations along the way to Vienna. This copy wept the first three days of August, 1715, and the thrid weeping of Our Lady of Marijapovch occurred December, 1905. The Weeping Icon of Our Lady of Marijapovch is discussed in the article below:

"The Weeping Icon of Marijapovch on the 300th Anniversary of the First Miraculous Weeping."
This file is located remotely at the Carpatho-Rusyn Spirituality homepage.

Mura, Spain
A Blood-Weeping Statue

A marble statue of the Madonna in Mura reportedly has wept tears of blood. It is reported as follows:

Font, Carmen. 1998, May. "Crying Madonna in Mura, Spain" (in the column "Signs"). Share International.

New Sarov, Blanco, Texas, USA
The Myrrh Weeping Icon of Our Lady of New Sarov


Our Lady of New Sarov
Taken from a postcard photograph scanned by "Aaron"
on
the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist Homepage.

The myrrh-weeping icon of Our Lady of New Sarov is preserved at the Shrine of the Mother of God at Christ of the Hills Russian Orthodox Monastery, whose address is printed below:

Christ of the Hills Russian Orthodox Monastery
New Sarov
Blanco, TX 78606-1049
USA
Phone: (830) 833-5363
Fax: (830) 833-5813

In New Sarov, a small monastic community just outside of Blanco, Texas, made up of Christ of the Hills Monastery and the attatched Convent, an icon of the Vladimir type which had been written in 1983 by an Orthodox monk in California began to weep tears of myrrh on 24 April 1985 (7 May by the Russian calender). The icon wept continuously until October of the Russian year, and since then, according to a monk at the monastery, has continued to weep intermittently almost every day. The icon can, however go for up to two weeks without weeping. 24 April has since then been celebrated as the icon's Feast Day, and all pilgrims, regardless of Faith, are welcomed at the monastery and annointed with Our Lady's tears. The weeping icon is discussed in the book Miracles in the Last Days, which is now under preparation.

Christ of the Hills Monastery has recently dedicated a website entiteld The Weeping Icon: The Mother of God Icon of New Sarov. See especially the website's exclusive "A Miracle for Baby Sara."

The Monastery publishes a pamphlet on the icon distributed widely, available below.

Shrine of the Blessed Virgin Mary. N. d. Blanco, Texas: n. p. (This is a pamphlet available from Christ of the Hills Russian Orthodox Monastery.)

Shrine of the Blessed Virgin Mary. N. d. Blanco, Texas: n. p. (This is a pamphlet pinned to the Shrine's souvenir pins available for sale at Christ of the Hills Russian Orthodox Monastery. It is not identical to the other pamphlet of the same name, though it contains excerpts from that pamphlet.)

The monks at New Sarov send out tears of myrrh from the icon absorbed in cotton balls to any in need who write to the above address, as well as to all pilgrims who visit the shrine and attend the tour. (This is discussed on the local Free Relics By Mail page.) Enlosed with the tear are instructions for its use in annointing the sick, as available below:

Tear of the Mother of God Instructions. N. d. Blanco, Texas: n. p.

The opposite side of this paphlet is in Spanish, and will be posted soon.

On 1 June 1998, the pageholder visited the icon of Our Lady of New Sarov, although I did not witness the icon weep. My journal entry was printed in the June 1998 issue of State of unBeing, and is available below, although I have corrected two places where I did not exchange the handle of SoB writer Crux Ansata for his real name, and I have added links and otherwise made the file appropriate for hypertext. The original article as printed is available in SoB No. 47.

Dark Crystal Sphere Floating Between Two Universes [Marc A. Beherec]. 1998, June. "Journal: Russian Monks and a Weeping Icon." State of unBeing No. 47.

Our Lady of New Sarov is discussed on the "Images and Icons" page of The Miracles Page, run by the publishers of the magazine Share International. Bette Stockbauer of Share International also visited the shrine and interviewed Fr. Pangratios, a monk there. Her article and interview is online as follows:

Stockbauer, Bette. "'Make Straight the Way of the Lord': The Weeping Icon at Christ of the Hills."
This file is located remotely at The Miracles Page.

The icon is also often covered in the local media, including in the following stories:

Belile, Liz. 1998, 28 May-3 June. "'Round Yonder Virgin: Blanco's Weeping Icon Sheds Some Light." Houston Press: Night and Day.
Or visit the Urban Adventures mirror.
Don't miss this article's
Web Extra!

The account by another who visited the icon and saw it weep is as follows:

De Wilde, Jean-Pierre. The Weeping Icon.
This is located remotely at Jean-Pierre De Wilde's Personal Homepage.

24 April 1985 (7 May by the Russian calender), the anniversary of the first weeping of the icon, has been named the icon's Feast Day, and this day is regularly celbrated at the monastery. In 1997 the monks at Christ of the Hills' daughter monastery at Boscobel, Wisconsin, joined the monks at Christ of the Hills to celebrate the first weeping's twelfth anniversary. This was later reported in the monastery's newsletter, as follows:

"12th Anniversary of the Weeping Icon." 1997, August. The Christ of the Hills Monastery Chronicle, the newsletter of Christ of the Hills Monastery, vol. 23, no. 1, pgs. 2-3.

Phoenix, Arizona, USA
Two blood weeping statues


Blood-weeping statue of Our Mother of the World
Associated with the claimed visions of Patricia Mundorf
Taken from
Mother's Bleeding Statue.

Mary's Mantle Ministries
8608 Heatherbrae Dr.
Phoenix, AZ. 85037-2144

In Phoenix, Arizona, Patricia Mundorf -- a woman who was severely injured by an attacker and permanently brain-damaged, but who believes she has miraculously regained the use of her legs through Our Lady's intercession -- claims to be recieving messages from the Blessed Virgin under the title Our Mother of the World. Associated with these Apparitions are two statues of Our Lady, which are said to on occasion weep blood. (There is also an associated statue of Our Lord, said to have bled from His Sacred Heart on two days in August of 1998.) The Diocese of Phoenix is examining Ms. Mundorf's claims. The public is invited to visit Ms. Mundorf's home on the first Saturday of each month, as well as on the Friday of each remaining week during the Apparitions.

Information on the bleeding statues and the messages Ms. Mundorf claims to have recieved regarding them is provided here. (Information on the bleeding Sacred Heart is also available.) This is located remotely at Mary, Queen of All Hearts Webpage.

Tampa Bay, Florida, USA
Six Weeping Icons


This image taken from
Gary P. Posner's homepage.

On 18 July 1989, six icons reportedly began to weep at the Greek Orthodox Shrine of St. Michael in Tarpon Springs in Tampa Bay. One of these icons, that pictured above, was inspected by Dr. Gary P. Posner, M.D., head of the Tampa Bay Skeptics. Dr. Posner discovered some apparent contradictions in the testimony of Fr. Christos Matos, one of the priests in charge, and discovered that the icon above is apparently actually merely a photograph of an icon in Chicago reported to weep while the latter icon was weeping, and that the icon in Tampa Bay was not weeping. Unfortunately, Dr. Posner seems to have ignored the five other reportedly weeping icons, and the claim that Fr. Matos later told a member of the Tampa Bay Skeptics that the icon was not weeping does not hold to the rigorous standards skeptics claim to keep. A number of aspects in this case remain unclear in Dr. Posner's report. Fr. Matos was later transfered to another church. Versions of Dr. Posner's report were are available in various periodicals and the World Wide Web as below:

Posner, Gary P. 1989, Fall. "Tampa Bay's 'Weeping Icon' Fiasco." Tampa Bay Skeptics Report.

Posner, Gary P. 1990, Summer. "Tampa Bay's 'Weeping Icon' Fiasco." Skeptical Inquirer.

Posner, Gary P. 1989. "Tampa Bay's 'Weeping Icon' Fiasco." Homepage version.
This is located remotely at Gary P. Posner's homepage.

Toronto, Ontario, Canada
A Moisture-Seeping Icon


This image taken from
The Miracles Page

As reported by the Toronto Sun, after Mass one Sunday in 1996 an icon of Our Lady of Kazan at Mother Prtaitissa, Sts. Raphael, Nikolaos and Irene Church in the East York district of Toronto reportedly began to "weep," exuding moisture from a point towards the crown of the image's head. This is discussed on the "Images and Icons" page of The Miracles Page, run by the publishers of the magazine Share International. This icon was also discussed in the pages of Share International as follows:

Hargrave, Connie. 1997, March. "Visit to the Weeping Madonna Icon in Toronto." Share International.

The Weeping Icon of Toronto was discussed in the Skeptical Inquirer, the organ of the athiestic Committee for the Scientific Investigation of Claims of the Paranormal as follows:

Nickell, Joe. 1997, March-April. "Something to Cry About: The Case of the Weeping Icon." Skeptical Inquirer, v. 21, n. 2, p. 19 (2).

Nisbet, Matthew. 1997, September. "Weeping Icon in Toronto" (in the column "CSICOP in the News"). Skeptical Briefs, vol. 7, no. 3.
This is located remotely at CSICOP On-line (the Committee for the Scientific Investigation of Claims of the Paranormal's homepage).

The priest involved in this case, Fr. Ieronimos Katseas, was also assigned to St. Irene Chrysovalantou Greek Orthodox Church while an icon there of (Orthodox) St. Irene wept and during the contriversial theft and return of the icon and the theft's aftermath. This is discussed in the Reliquary of St. Irene Chrysovalantou.

Troy, Michigan, USA
An Oil-Seeping Icon of Our Lady of the Portal


The oil-seeping Our Lady of the Portal of Troy, Michigan.
Photo by Donna Terek. From
The Detroit News Homepage.

Just before Thanksgiving, 1997, an icon of Our Lady of Perpetual Help reportedly started seeping oil in a woman's home. This partucular report is rather unusual in that the whole icon seeps oil. (In most cases the moisture exuded from an image comes from a single or a set of defined sources, usually the eyes.) Also, in an unusual act of ecumenism this icon, which began to seep oil in the home of an Antiochian Orthodox Christian, made a tour not only of Orthodox Churches in the area but also stopped at a Roman Catholic Church. Like most other animated holy images, this icon is reportedly associated with miraculous cures as well. The Detroit News covered this icon in March of 1998 in the "Accent" section of their paper, as follows:

Accent. 1998, 26 March. The Detroit News.
Located remotely at The Detroit News Homepage.

Hodges, Michael H. 1998, 26 March. "'Miracle' Draws Faithful." The Detroit News.
Located remotely at The Detroit News Homepage.

Terek, Donna. 1998, 26 March. "Weeping Icon -- A Photo Story." The Detroit News.
Located remotely at The Detroit News Homepage.


Other Miraculous Images

A number of icons have the reputation of being wonder-working, particularly in respect to miraculous healings. Some of these are pictured on the following webpage:

Miracle-Working Icons of the Mother of God. On the George Nickolaev personal homepage.


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Mail the pageholder: Marc A. Béhérec mabeherec@mail.utexas.edu
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