Saturday, April 23, 2005

Mother Mary's Latest Apparition

Whether it's a miracle or just a salt stain, this piece of news is worth reporting:

CHICAGO — A steady stream of the faithful and the curious, many carrying flowers and candles, have flocked to an expressway underpass for a view of a yellow-and-white stain on a concrete wall that some believe is an image of the Virgin Mary.

Police have patrolled the emergency turnoff area under the Kennedy Expressway since Monday as hundreds of people have walked down to see the image and the growing memorial of flowers and candles surrounding it. Beside the image is an artist's rendering of the Virgin Mary embracing Pope John Paul II in a pose that some see echoed in the stain.

"We believe it's a miracle," said Elbia Tello, 42. "We have faith, and we can see her face."


The stain is likely the result of salt runoff, according to the Illinois Department of Transportation. But the department does not plan to scrub it off the wall.

"We're treating this just like we treat any type of roadside memorial," said department spokesman Mike Claffey. "We have no plans to clean this site."


There's no denial the stain resembles the photo of Our Lady of Guadalupe.



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