Liquefaction of Blood
A famous miracle claimed for the blood of St. Januarius, executed
September 19, 309 C.E. In Lives of the Saints (1623), E.
Kinesman stated ‘‘The most stupendous miracle is that seen to
this day in the church of St. Gennaro, in Naples, viz. the blood
of St. Januarius, kept in two glass vials. When either vial, held
in the right hand, is presented to the head of the saint, the congealed
blood first melts, and then goes on apparently to boil.’’
Scientists have pointed out that such a miracle may be accomplished
scientifically by the use of ether or other chemicals.
However, the miracle has continued into modern times. On
May 6, 1989, the blood liquified on schedule in Naples, and
Cardinal Michele Giordano revealed that he had allowed scientists
to study the relic secretly. The liquefaction traditionally occurs
twice a year, on September 19, the day of the saint’s death,
and on the Saturday before the first Sunday in May. Cardinal
Giordano, archbishop of Naples, stated that the ‘‘May Miracle’’
of 1989 occurred during the religious procession that precedes
the usual ceremony for the liquefaction.
Sources
Rogo, D. Scott. Miracles A Parascientific Inquiry into Wondrous
Phenomena. New York Dial Press, 1982.
Thurston, Herbert. The Physical Phenomena of Mysticism. London
Burns Oates, 1952.

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