Rome, Italy, Feb 27, 2018 / 05:00 pm (CNA).- Almost a year and a half after an August 2016 earthquake in the central area of the Italy, a tabernacle with 40 intact and consecrated hosts was found amid the rubble in Our Lady of the Assumption church in the town of Arquata.
According to the Italian daily Avvenire, inside the tabernacle “the ciborium was overturned but the lid was still on. And despite all the months that had gone by, the hosts were whole, without any alteration.”
The Bishop of Ascoli Piceno, Giovanni D’Ercole, told Avvenire what was discovered: “A fresh baked aroma was still noticeable, which is very moving. It is a sign of hope for everyone. It tells us that Jesus also suffered the earthquake like everyone else, but he has come out alive from among the rubble.”
Fr. Angelo Ciancotti of the Ascoli Piceno cathedral said that getting into the tabernacle was not simple: “The problem was opening it up, but my collection of tabernacle keys helped me.”
The priest opened the tabernacle with one of the keys in his extensive collection, and said that inside an overturned ciborium, “was the Body of Christ which for more than a year and a half remained intact, without any change in color, shape or scent.”
Fr. Ciancotti told Avvenire that “there was no bacteria or mold as happens with hosts after a few weeks. Even though they were more than a year and a half old, they seemed to have been made the day before.”
In his opinion “this prodigious and inexplicable discovery” is “a miracle, but above all a message for everyone: it is a sign that reminds us of the centrality of the Eucharist.”
“Jesus is telling us” with these intact hosts that “’I am in your midst. Trust in me.’” he concluded.
This article was originally published by our sister agency, ACI Prensa. It has been translated and adapted by CNA.