Blessed Mary Alphonsine: inquiry about a new miracle
Jerusalem – on Wednesday May 2, 2012, the Patriarch appointed a tribunal for the purpose of the inquiry into an alleged second miracle attributed to the intercession of Blessed Mary Alphonsine. The official investigation is the first step toward the eventual canonization of the blessed of the Holy Land.
The meeting, on the evening of May 1st, began with the invocation to the Holy Spirit and continued with the Gospel reading of the Beatitudes. The Patriarch in his greeting thanked the ecclesiastical tribunal and asked the Blessed Mary Alphonsine to pray for the Holy Land and for the Congregation of the Sisters of the Rosary of which she is Foundress. Archbishop Twal also expressed his joy to the Superior General of the sisters of the Rosary, Mother Iness Al-Yacoub.
The decree, read by vice-chancellor of the Patriarchate, Father Marcelo Gallardo, formalizes the investigation of the miracle and the establishment of a tribunal responsible for this purpose. Bishop Giacinto-Boulos Marcuzzo, patriarchal vicar for Israel, was appointed a Judge delegate; Father Emile Salayta, Promoter of Justice, and Mr. Khader Habash, Notary. The members of the Tribunal swore on the Gospel. After which the Patriarch gave to Father Emile Salayta the petition (Supplex Libellus), which contains the documentation of the miracle to authenticate.
No miracle, no saint
In order that a blessed can be canonized a miracle must be recognized, accomplished after his/her beatification. A diocesan investigation into the presumed miracle is therefore opened. The documents are then sent to Rome and, after a study – both scientific and theological – at the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, the Pope himself sign will the decree of recognition of the miracle. A miracle is a confirmation of the presence of the Kingdom of God on earth (Second Vatican Council, Dogmatic Constitution Lumen Gentium, no. 5). The recognition assumes that the prodigious phenomenon is examined as scientifically inexplicable and happened in connection with prayers addressed to God through the intercession of the Servant of God.
Blessed of the Holy Land
Mary Alphonsine Danil Ghattas was born in Jerusalem the October 4, 1843 and died on March 25, 1927. On October 15, 1994, Pope John Paul II recognized the heroic virtues; in 1995 she was proclaimed “Venerable”. She was beatified on November 22, 2009 at Nazareth. “Her merit – said the Holy Father – is in having founded a Religious Congregation of women of the place with the aim of religious teaching, to overcome illiteracy and to improve the condition of woman in the land where Jesus himself exalted their dignity. … The beatification of this impressive woman is a comfort, especially for the Catholic community of the Holy Land and an invitation to rely, with firm hope, on Divine Providence and the maternal protection of Maria.( * )
During her life, Sister Mary Alphonsine has received the grace of many apparitions of the Virgin Mary who revealed her desire for the foundation of a Congregation of the Rosary.
On July 25, 1885, Mother Mary Alphonsine was sent to Jaffa in Galilee with another nun. It is there that one day a miracle occurred: a little girl, her name was Nathira I’d, fell into a deep tank full of water. The only thing that Mother Mary Alphonsine could do was to throw her great rosary into the well, invoke the Holy Virgin and come into the church and pray the rosary with the other young people. Nathira emerged from the well healthy and safe. She later told that she had seen a great light and a ladder in the form of rosary to help her get out of the well.
Since Sister Mary Alphonsine is beatified she has a right to a local veneration in the Diocese of the Holy Land or within her Congregation. Indeed, a saint has the right to veneration throughout the world.
( * ) Source: Beatification in Jerusalem