Eucharistic Miracles (22)

Eucharistic Miracles (22)

​ITALY, 1273.

Eucharistic Miracle of Offida.

In  1273, at  Lanciano, a woman named Ricciarella,  in  order to regain  the  affection of her husband Giacomo  Stasio, at  the suggestion of a  sorceress, came up  to Holy Communion to  steal a consecrated Host. Returning  to  her house, she put  the  Host over a fire  above an earthenware jar with  the intention of reducing  it to  powder and then putting it  in  her  husband’s  food. 

The  Host, however, was transformed into  bleeding flesh. Ricciarella, terrified  by  what  was happening,  wrapped  up  the jar and  the  bleeding  Host  in  a  linen cloth and then  buried  it  in  a  hole under  a pile  of manure  in her husband  Giacomo’s  stable.   Giacomo’s  donkey, every  time it entered  the stable, knelt down  and genuflected  towards the place where  the  miraculous  Host was buried, so  much  so  that  it  made Giacomo suspect that  his  wife had inflicted a curse on  the animal. 

Seven years  later Ricciarella, filled with  remorse, confessed  her horrible sacrilege to Father Giacomo Diotallevi of Offida,  who was prior of  the Augustinian monastery  in  Lanciano at  that time. As  the earliest  accounts  tell us, the  woman,  in tears,  began to shout to  the priest: “I  killed  God!  I killed  God!”  

The priest,  when  he arrived at  the stable, found  the wrapped up bundle  intact  together  with  the Relics, which were then  handed over to  her fellow  citizens. To preserve  the  Sacred  Host, the citizens of  Offida  made a reliquary in the form  of a Cross. As an ancient narrative reports, Brother Michael and a fellow  religious brother were  sent  to  a goldsmith in  Venice. Arriving  there,  they made the  goldsmith  promise “that he  would  not  tell anyone what  he was  about  to see and place inside  the Cross.”   

The  goldsmith  then took  the  pyx containing  the  miraculous  Host into  his  hand, but  was immediately  overcome with  a  high fever. The goldsmith, filled with terror  at  that  point,  exclaimed: “What have  you  brought  me,  my brother?” The  monk then  asked him  if by  chance  he was in  the state of  mortal  sin. The goldsmith answered  “yes,”  made his confession, and  the fever disappeared immediately. He then took  the  pyx,  took  the Host  out of it, and placed it in the Cross.   

There are  numerous documents which  describe  the miracle, among which  is  an  authentic  copy  of a parchment from the  13th  century, transcribed by  the  notary Giovanni Battista  Doria  in  1788.  There are, in addition, numerous Papal Bulls, beginning with  that  of Pope Boniface  VIII in 1295,  up  to  that of Pope  Sixtus  V  in  1585.

Today  the  Relic  of  the  jar and  the cloth  stained  by  Blood  together with  the Cross containing  part  of the miraculous Host  are  exposed in the Church  of St. Augustine  in Offida. The house  of Ricciarella at Lanciano  has been  in  turn converted into  a small chapel.   

In  1973, the  seventh centenary  of the  Miracle was commemorated, and  on May 3 of each year, the citizens of Offida celebrate the anniversary of the Miracle. 

NOTE: pls DO NOT commit the sacrilege this woman committed, rather reverence the consecrated Host with great love and respect. 

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