One of the biggest complaints protestants have against the Catholic Church is the one of statues – whether it is the statues of the saints, of Our Lady or of Jesus himself, they think this is too much like idolatry. But what happens when statues become ‘alive’? Is it just “idolatry” or a hoax? Or has Jesus himself come to visit in his images?
This is, undoubtedly the most famous miraculous statue is the Crucifix of Limpias in a 16th century church dedicated to St. Peter and located in Santander, Spain. This life-sized statue is located above the main altar and was the work of Pedro de Mena, who died in 1693.
This extremely life-like image includes life-like eyes which are upturned towards heaven.
The first time the statue was recorded to have living characteristics was when Don Antonio Lopez was fixing the electric light over the high altar in 1914. Taking a break from his work, he started cleaning the statue. As he did so, he noticed the eyes of Jesus were closing. The man was so startled that he ended up falling from the ladder.
Another man said that this was not an uncommon occurrence, but had simply assumed there were interior mechanisms at work. At this, Don Lopez figured it made sense and did not worry about it. However, as he cleaned the crucifix in the future, he tried to find what mechanism could be causing the phenomenon, but could never find anything. The eyes themselves were so firmly attached to face that he could not move them. How could this be?
He wrote this all down, but kept it to himself until 1920, prodded into action by the events of 1919 when this “statue” came alive to many observers all at once.
A great mission was being held at this church in Santander. On the very last day of this mission, which was the Sunday, 30th of March, a girl entered the confessional during the sermon and said that Jesus’ eyes were closed. Father Jalon ignored this, but then other children also brought the same message. After Father Agatangelo finished his sermon, they both looked at the crucifix, but saw nothing unusual.
Suddenly, a man in the congregation shouted to look… and everyone saw that the children had been right. People in the church were overcome with emotion at this miracle.
Not only were the eyes of Jesus opening and closing, but his face was turning from side to side to look at the people. He was also perspiring, and a ladder was brought out so that Father Jalon could verify the miracle.
Palm Sunday (13th April 1919) – two doubters (important men of Limpias) observed the miracle.
Easter Sunday (20th April) – a group of nuns from the Daughters of the Cross saw the eyes and lips of Jesus move. Some others saw it at the same time.
From 24th April, there were nearly daily incidences.
In addition to eye movement and sweat, some have noticed drops of blood, froth on his lips, sweat on his body and head movement. Some even felt that he had emitted a deep sigh, a whisper, or saw his mouth move. Some felt that he was uttering the words “Love Me!”
Many testimonies have been written about the apparitions. The church of Limpias has albums containing over 8000 testimonies, 2500 of which were sworn under oath. Many different kinds of people have been witnesses including atheists and other unbelievers as well as members of religious orders and physicians who had come in order to disprove the miracles. One unbeliever felt Jesus’ anger in his gaze.
Read the rest of the article at: http://www.miraclesofthechurch.com/2010/10/miraculous-crucifix-of-limpias-jesus.html
This video is in French, but has translated subtitles available.
“The Wonderful Crucifix of Limpias: Remarkable Manifestations” By Baron Ewald von Kleist, Benzinger Brothers, 1922. Available in its entirity for free online here . Note that this book was written only 3 years after the events, so the details provided are of very recent memory.
Officially, the Church quickly granted a seven-year plenary indulgence to all who visited the Crucifix at Limpias.
I hope to uncover more miraculous images of Our Lord, but this one, being so (relatively) recent and so well-witnessed is outstanding evidence that, at least sometimes Our Lord and Savior comes to stay for awhile in order to help us all build our faith.