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January 1, AD 2012 15 Comments

There are times — extremely frustrating times — when our religion is a leap of faith and a walk into the yawning darkness. There are times when our daily prayer crumbles into daily mantra, and we feel guilty of every charge the new atheist brings against us; we are brain-washed, we are ignorant, we were fools ever to believe. There are times of dryness. There are times when God really seems dead. And then there is Every Time Else.

And Every Time Else – with apologies paid to saints experiencing the dark night of the soul, and secularists pursuing the same – is where it’s at. I was giving a talk on Mary to a group of middle schoolers, and, as a joke to get them thinking, I asked whether she had appeared to any of them recently. It was with some surprise, then, that I watched hands shoot up. A fellow teacher told the story of a priest for whom statues of Mary would weep, a priest in Northern Virginia with the stigmata who tapes his wrists on Good Friday – which apparently does very little to stem the flow of blood that runs down his arms – and how with him, she had seen the veil of Our Lady turn and change colors. A little girl told of her parent’s rosary turning to gold on a pilgrimage. I told the story my parents told me of Mary appearing to me as an infant, accompanied by the overpowering smell of roses. And suddenly, gently, the realization settled across the hall of kids; we were surrounded by miracles.

I suppose any self respecting atheist is at this point scoffing: Rosaries into gold, what despicable, brainwashed piety! But I hold you accountable for your own piety, for your own irrational dogma that rosaries stay wooden. I will literally mail 100 dollars in cash to any atheist who can answer the question Chesterton has still not heard answered:

The question of miracles is merely this. Do you know why a pumpkin goes on being a pumpkin? If you do not, you cannot possibly tell whether a pumpkin could turn into a coach or couldn’t. That is all.

Or why the sun stays still, or the dead stay dead. Or why bodies rot. That’s right, incorruptibles, for goodness sake.

You want a miracle, there’s a miracle. Verified by secular science, there for anyone willing to see, bodies that should rot do not. Do not acknowledge this and at the same time scoff at the Resurrection. Do not look upon what you and I quite simply have no other explanation than that the old, stubborn, Roman Catholic Church gives, and then say “but that’s no reason to believe in a God. We simply don’t know.” Real scientists go where the evidence leads them, and stop when it fails. They do not choose which evidence suits them and ignore the rest, that would make them, I believe, douchers.

Anyhow, Catholics! We are a religion of miracles! Find them! Pray for them! Enjoy them!

[author] [author_image timthumb=’on’][/author_image] [author_info]Marc Barnes is 18 years old, and a freshman at Franciscan University. He loves indie rock, black coffee, Southern literature and Catholicism, and blogs regularly at Bad Catholic. He writes with a strong desire to reach a state of financial security, so he can marry a pretty girl he likes.[/author_info] [/author]

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  • tom

    Marc, my best friend is an atheist. It is difficult to ‘open’ their mind to miracles, and such. That plane of experience is far beyond what they are searching for. They want ground level stuff first. I recently made headway with him with this argument: If I said to you (my friend) that the moon is made of cheese, what would be your reply? He reply was, no it is not made of cheese. I said, how do you know? You have never been there. He said, true, but others have, reliable others, others who I trust, and they left behind an incredible body of work that supports the fact that the moon is not made of cheese. To which I said, “and so it is with our God and His Son. Not only do we have scientific facts, artifacts, documents, etc, verifying His (Jesus’) life, and an incredibly large body of evidence in general, we also have thousands and thousands of martyrs who gave up their life to witness to this large body of work supporting the evidence of God for our benefit (in the future, so that we might know). And yet no one ever died to witness that the moon was not made of cheese, and you believe so whole-heartedly that is is not made of cheese. Point it, the “lowest” rung on the belief ladder, for any intelligent, thinking person, should be the rung of “I just don’t know.” Too much evidence exists. Good luck to you !

  • Vin

    How true? Ir amazes me that so many people can look at the same evidence for the existence of God and come to different conclusions. Perhaps it is the way it is according to God’s plan. Who can know the mind of God, creator of the universe, for GOD’S SAKE!! I must admit that I have a problem with the fact that the creator of all that is also created little old me!! But, how many other of His creations have their own destiny in their hands? As mighty and spectacular as the stars are, they cannot make the tiniest decision on their own.

  • ”Looking for a Miracle Weeping Icons, Relics, Stigamata, and Healing Cures” by Joe Nickell, Prometheus Books 1998 – Just excellent!

  • a huge thank you to the person who wrote about the the tridentene mass. this person 40 miles to attend. thanks for the opportunity to view and listen to the videos. God bless you. just found this sight thru spirit daily…a miracle for me.

  • Joseph Johnson

    In regards to Catholic miracles, there is a great website called “Miracles of the Church” which documents various miracles in the Catholic church. For those interested:
    Miracles of the Church

    -Joseph Johnson

  • Joseph Johnson

    Sorry, the link above doesn’t work….anyway the link is

    -Joseph Johnson

  • Arline

    I have many mircles I can show in photographs taken at an apparition site, as well as in my own home–5 pairs of my rosaries and one rosary bracelet have turned from silver tone to gold tone, also Crucifixes that have partially turned to gold–and one of my statues of Our Lady of Fatima with her white dress gradually turning a hint of light blue–plus an instant healing of my back at same apparition site. Seen with my own eyes, and the eyes of some of my family members…miracles of statues of Jesus coming to life. Also witnessing the miracle of the sun at that apparition site, and more. God is REAL, He is alive, and He is with us! Believe and pray from your heart, and perhaps you will be granted graces. Praise to you Lord Jesus Christ!

  • Deb

    Thank you for this…I needed to read this today.

  • kiki


  • Jacques

    There are much more spectacular miracles:
    For example, in 1917 at Fatima our Ladt told the 3 kids 3 months beforehand:
    “Here I will perform a great miracle on October 13th at noon SO THAT ALL MAY BELIEVE”
    An a on this exact date and hour, the sun danced in the sky before 70000 witnesses.
    This event was reported in the newspapers everywhere in the world.
    Now people are dismissing it as impossible to believe in, mass hallucination, aliens manifestation, even a “Vatican plot” !!!
    There are not such unbelievers than those who are refusing to believe the evidence.

  • Arline

    A response–I never had the rosaries that turned from silvertone to goldentone tested but I assume they turned a golden color as a miracle to stengthen faith, not only mine, but many folks that I’ve shown them to. Heaven is at work! A miracle took place right before my eyes and it was a Wow! The miraculous photos I received are also so awesome! To me they are a gift of God’s existence as well as our beautiful Blessed Mother. I’m so honored! My faith has grown a thousand-fold! Since my healing, I see auras. They began only around religious objects, and have expanded to some people, but not all. God is calling to us to come back to Him. Prayer becomes easier as you pray. Mass becomes more enjoyable as you attend. Receiving the Holy Eucharist is such an honor and a privledge only He can give us. God bless all who reads my testimony.

  • amy rustand

    I do not intend to be a smasher of miracles. I am a practicing Catholic. But I also attend to miracles as the Church does, with skepticism and caution until proven to be so…this is to avoid the appearance of looking a fool when one has jumped to ‘miracle’ conclusions when a natural explanation is sufficient.

    In the case of silver rosaries turning to gold: most cheaply and mass-produced rosaries have links of silver-plated brass. The brass is of course, gold-tone. Given enough handling, or sufficiently sweaty palms with higher levels of acid due to stress (like praying at a hospital for a dying loved one) the silver plating wears off, revealing the ‘golden’ brass. This is the surest way to turn a ‘silver’ rosary to ‘gold’.

    If any of you truly owned sterling silver rosaries that did indeed turn gold, my apologies. But for those of you with the common kind of rosary, I ask you to consider this and be cautious about whom you tell about your ‘miracle’. It can be easily disproven by a sneering unbeliever, and I would not want any of you to lose faith over something like this, or to feel stupid.

  • Arline

    Amy: I realize you don’t know me from Adam…and of course believing me doesn’t matter one way or the other, I was merely sharing my blessed experience. The first rosary to turn golden was NOT in my hands at the time, and I was not in a hospital with sweaty palms, it was in my pocketbook and was not removed until after my return from the apparition site. I didn’t even pray with that particular rosary that day, I used another I had with me, which did not turn golden. It is very wise to use great caution when reading something a stranger relates. But if you knew me, you would know I am telling the truth. I am a practicing Catholic, and I, too, go with caution. God bless you!

  • philip

    Marc. Tim Tebow and the godincidence for his family and ours at-large is a small but beautiful miracle. 316 yards yesterday:) Apostle’s of the day witness with love. Thanks for your post Marc.

  • Christopher

    There is no adequate evidence proving or disproving God’s existence…you simply will not find it. This in itself is proof enough for me. God gave us the free will to chose Him. Science answers the question of what. Religion answers the question of why. My choice is hope, and love. Hbu?