|Ex capillis, ex velo, ex veste,|
ex selpulchro Beata Virgine Mariae
The miracles which derive from the holy relics witness to the fact that their pious veneration by the people is pleasing to God (Saint Justin Popovich).
Even after death they act as if alive, healing the sick, expelling demons, and by the power of the Lord rejecting every evil influence of the demons. This is because the miraculous grace of the Holy Spirit is always present in the holy relics (Saint Ephraim the Syrian).Here (above, below) for your edification are four precious relics of the Virgin Mary in a hand-carved and gilded sealed reliquary and a fifth relic in a common theca. The four relics of Our Lady presented in the above reliquary, with official documentation of their authenticity, consist of:
- A short strand of her hair,
- A small piece of her silk veil;
- A small piece of her colored robe; and
- A stone from her tomb in Jerusalem.
Above is a small piece of the Virgin's veil that she was reportedly wearing when she gave birth to Christ. This veil was in the possession of the Emperor Charlemagne, who had received it as a gift from the Byzantine Empress Irene of Constantinople. It was gifted by Charles II, the grandson of Charlemagne, in 876 to the Cathedral of Notre-Dames de Chartres in France. Other portions of the veil can be found in churches across Italy, in Cologne and Mainz, Germany; and in Prague, Czech Republic among others.
Above is a small stone from the tomb of Our Lady that can be found in the crypt of the Church of the Assumption in Kidron Valley (Valley of Josaphat; Joel 3:2, 12), Jerusalem, Israel. According to the tradition of the Dormition, the body of the Virgin Mary spent three days in this tomb before her Assumption into heaven. Her three days in the tomb mirrored those spent by her Divine Son in the Holy Sepulchre, also in Jerusalem.
Official documentation of the authenticity of the relics and their provenance comes on parchment from Aloysius, Cardinal Amat (eventual Head of the College of Cardinals), dated 1829. The four relics above were re-authenticated on the same document in 1884:
|Certfication by Aloysius, Cardinal Amat|
Here is a fifth precious relic of Our Lady's, this time a small piece of her girdle (belt), which she had given to the Apostle Thomas. Large portions of this girdle, reported to have been made of camel hair, can now be found at Vatopedi Monastery on Mount Athos, Greece; the Monastery of Trier, Germany; the Cathedral in Prato, Italy; and at the Church of the Holy Belt in Homs, Syria.
|Ex fascia Beata Virgine Mariae|
© Marcelle Bartolo-Abela, aka Bald Eagle