STATUE AT MEDJUGORJE SAID TO BE OOZING UNEXPLAINED LIQUID AGAIN
We have confirmed a report that there is oozing again from a large bronze corpus of Christ behind St. James Church in Medjugorje.
Like last June -- when the exudation was noticed around the time of anniversary celebrations -- continuous droplets of a watery fluid have been coming from what looks like a point of erosion or "wound" on the side of the statue's right knee.
We don't know if it's supernatural. We'll wait for more information. But it is certainly strange -- and because it involves an actual physical object, it is one of the most potentially interesting manifestations in the twenty years of phenomena.
The exudation, which brings to mind weeping Madonnas, occurs on a sporadic basis and was especially noticeable the first week of October, according to one witness, Savio C. Barros -- a former government worker from Mississauga in Canada who watched the phenomenon on October 4 and 5 with dozens of others as crowds again began to form around the corpus.
"When I looked, I saw the water coming out of the side of the knee," said Barros. "I touched the water itself and so did a lot of people. Many people saw it. The drops were one after another, continuously falling. People were saying different things, different ways, but I felt it was very strange that the water was coming out that way."
Others have described it as watery drops that feel like a cross between saltwater and oil flowing from the 15-foot statue -- and hundreds witnessed it last summer.
Why there would be such a steady accumulation of moisture in a specific part of the statue has confounded experts. A source in the parish has told us that it's filled with concrete from the feet to the waist, and bronze experts in the U.S. say they have never heard of bronze reacting in such away -- except for an initial "sweating" of bronze when it is first fashioned and put to intense heat.
The drops have occurred in cooler weather -- reported also last March and also last October -- and even in a hot humid environment bronze shouldn't react in that way, according to John Blair, project manager for Jozef Custom Ironworks, a large firm in Bridgeport, Connecticut.
Blair called the situation "absolutely" unusual" when asked if when there's humidity bronze sweats to the point where something can exude from the metal itself.
"That's a really curious question," he said when we first consulted him last summer -- after seeing it ourselves. "I've never seen it from humidity. However, when I apply a patina, when I flame it with a torch, it does sweat then. You do get moisture over the surface of the bronze. But I've never seen it from heat or humidity."
Is it unusual for such metal to react in such a way from one particular part and occur every couple minutes?
"Oh, sure," replied Blair. "Absolutely. My only observation of bronze sweating is in the beginning of the patinization process, as we begin to heat the bronze. It does sweat for a minute there. But it's nothing like that -- where it's actually dripping. There's a glaze over the surface and then you know your piece is beginning to warm up. As far as the thing crying or sweating like that, unless there's holes in it, with water getting in a source, and it's leaking like a roof would leak, no: it would have to be something at the miracle end of it."
There still may be a natural explanation. We'll wait and see what experts who can actually observe it have to say. But for the time being it's another mystery from the famous apparition site, and some even claim that substance has caused healing. The October report is the first since July 9, when a parish spokesperson said the drops had stopped.
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