Today someone brought in a relic of a painting of the virgin mary to display in our chapel. Not overly momentus, even for die hard Catholics, but here's why it drew crowds around it - it was crying.
Now I've heard about this stuff, have even seen pictures that congregation members have brought in swearing that their brother's uncle's neighbor's distant acquaintance snapped a picture of the image of Christ or Mary in a rock, window or in the clouds - and I don't mean to make light of it, but I've never been truly sold on this idea of images appearing as a sign from God.
I do believe God sends us signs - but would he send a sign on a grilled cheese? And I just wonder if people are so very desperate for signs or if they just like to create sensationalism, or maybe newscasters - like Telemundo - overhype the incidents.
So you're probably wondering about the crying Mary. Well, when I heard it was in the chapel, and co-workers came back from viewing it saying that it was crying, right then - I had to go. I wanted to see if it was true. Do these things really happen?
So what did I see? I saw the tear streaks coming right from the eye areas. I saw that they were salt stains - like real tears would create. And the people in the room kept pointing out the fresh tear streak that had just fallen just moments before. They pointed it out to me - but I just didn't see it. How is it that in a group of people standing together, some see one thing and another won't?
Maybe because I didn't believe? Did I have no faith? Am I such a skeptic that if God did put a sign right in front of my face, truly - my face was inches from the painting- that I would be so blind? Did I choose not to see it?
Or could it be there was nothing there? And others want to see something so badly, that they imagine it? And convince others around them that it's there?
Here's the topping to the cake. One woman was so moved by the sight that she stayed in the chapel to pray and heard a woman weeping softly. She got up to leave to give that person some privacy, and when she looked around, she realized she was alone in the chapel.
So, what are your thoughts on sightings and signs?