I have some small articles in December’s O: The Oprah Magazine about … miracles.
Do you believe in miracles?
I write about the Oak Island treasure and the Tunguska event, where strange things have appeared that scientists have been at a loss to explain.
Then there’s the Oregon Vortex, where balls roll uphill and when two people of different heights switch places, the shorter one looks taller (I’ve seen with my own eyes and photographed it.)
Oprah, I think, believes in miracles.
I used to be a total skeptic. I grew up being told, adamantly, not to believe in miracles.
I still believe that there’s almost always a scientific explanation for why strange things happen.
But as I’ve gotten older I’ve come to realize that the explanation is perhaps irrelevant.
Even if you don’t believe in miracles, do you want to?
Take Padre Pio, whom I write about on page 219 of the magazine.
In 1918 this young priest was kneeling at prayer when he saw blood dripping from his hands, sides, and feet.
Many believed he had been touched by the stigmata and that he was bleeding because of his deep empathy for Jesus on the cross.
Others thought the wounds were self-inflicted.
Today you can’t walk a block in Italy without happening upon a Padre Pio bumper sticker in a car window.
Could Padre Pio really translocate?
Did he have the stigmata?
Ultimately I’m not sure it matters.
What’s most important is that his good deeds reinvigorated a flagging Catholic faith in a way nothing had since Saint Francis of Assisi preached simplicity and humility 700 years before.
When Padre Pio was canonized in 2002, some 300,000 followers stood in the hot sun (it was 100-degrees that day) to bear witness.
Belief is a powerful force. Maybe believing in miracles can actually make them happen.
Breaking into O: The Oprah Magazine has been a goal of mine for a long time.
That I’m in this issue is a miracle in itself.
What about you, do you believe in miracles?
Published: November 21, 2010
Updated: January 22, 2020