Nun tells of healing John Paul II prayer

2011-01-18 13:24

Aix-en-Provence - A French nun says she felt new inner strength and vitality as her Parkinson's disease suddenly disappeared in 2005 - a recovery the Vatican attributes to the miraculous intercession of Pope John Paul II.

Sister Marie Simon-Pierre, who works at a Paris maternity clinic, told reporters in a rare appearance on Monday that she felt "reborn" on waking on June 3 2005 after she had prayed for healing to John Paul.

"There was a new strength inside me, and my body was rediscovering its vitality and fluidity," Simon-Pierre, appearing in good health, told reporters in the southern French city of Aix-en-Provence.

The 49-year-old nun - who has largely been shielded from the media - said she still sometimes talks to John Paul.

"For this news conference, I told him to stay right beside me!" said Simon-Pierre, who appeared smiling and wearing a white habit at the news conference.

Pope Benedict XVI has set May 1 as the date for his predecessor's beatification, a step toward possible sainthood.

Church authorities have studied Simon-Pierre's cure and determined it was inexplicable and due to the intercession of John Paul, who also suffered from Parkinson's. Benedict approved the miracle last week, paving the way for the beatification.

Questions about diagnosis settled

Last year, there were some questions about whether the nun's original diagnosis was correct. But in a statement on Friday, the Congregation for the Causes of Saints said Vatican-appointed doctors had "scrupulously" studied the case and determined that her cure had no scientific explanation.

Parkinson's, a disorder of the central nervous system, includes symptoms such as trembling, rigidity and problems of balance.

Simon-Pierre's healing came about two months after John Paul's death on April 2 2005, at age 84. Soon before her mysterious recovery, she had asked to stop working, saying she was "ready to finish out her days in a wheelchair", her former mother superior recalled.

"When she came to ask me to replace her, I noticed that she was very worn out. I told her to wait. I told her that John Paul II hadn't had his last word on the subject," Sister Marie-Thomas recalled.

Benedict put John Paul on the fast track to possible sainthood just weeks after he died, waiving the typical five-year waiting period before the process could begin. But he insisted that the investigation into John Paul's life be thorough to avoid any doubts about his virtues.

The beatification will nonetheless be the fastest on record, coming a little more than six years after his death and beating out Mother Teresa's then-record beatification in 2003 by a few days.

Visitors are expected to visit the Vatican in droves on May 1, and the beatification is seen as a morale boost for a church reeling from the clerical sex abuse scandal.

  • gb2161 - 2011-01-18 13:39

    The usual bollocks from the mafia in dresses. Their PR is certainly working overtime manufacturing more nonsense in an attempt to divert attention from the latest scandal. Yes, Papa Ratzi, I am referring to your letter of instruction to the clergy in Ireland to not report clergyman child rapists to the police.

  • James - 2011-01-18 13:42

    Lies lies and more lies from the Church.

  • Ateis - 2011-01-18 15:32

    Sure as hell didn't straighten her teeth - maybe she should have prayed for that. It's high time for religion to die.

  • jprinsloo1980 - 2011-01-18 15:33

    you have got to be kidding me! How stupid do these people think we are, they are just trying to make the church look great again with a bunch of miracles and hope people forget what a bunch of greedy child molesters they are!

  • dilligaf - 2011-01-18 17:29

    What a crock.

  • bradm911 - 2011-01-18 18:21

    In the words Ricky Gravise used to close the Golden Globe Awards "Thank god made me an Athiest"...

  • John - 2011-01-19 08:29

    The other day I had severe back ache. I prayed to my cat and a miracle happened - My back got better! I am going to call my feline now St. Venus.

      Ateis - 2011-01-19 11:01

      LMAO John I must try the same with my cats!

  • Mikemcc - 2011-01-19 08:57

    Another fairy tale added to the list so some dead guy can be praised for work he did not achieve whilst alive. It always struck me as strange how lately only those of the cloth are witness to the "miracles" required for rise to sainthood. It would truly be a miracle if this group of criminals came clean about the facts relating to the abuses over the years.

  • Zeus - 2011-03-11 05:26

    Stupid Superstition!

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