Eucharistic Miracle of Offida
A woman named Ricciarella was married to a man named Giacomo Stasio. She was deeply unhappy in her marriage and tried everything she could to win the love of her husband. A witch told her that she knew of a way that she could change her circumstances and have her husband grow to love and respect her. She was told to receive the Holy Eucharist and then heat it over a fire until it turned to powder. She was then supposed to put some of it in her husband’s food or drink.
In her desperation she decided to try it. She went to mass and when she received communion she allowed the Holy Eucharist to fall out of her mouth into the top of her dress. She took it home and placed the Sacred Host into a coppo which is a type of clay tile similar to those used on the peak of a roof. She then started to heat the Host and instead of turning to powder like she was told it began to turn into a piece of bloody flesh. She was horrified at what was happening. She tried throwing ashes and wax on it to stop what was happening but to no avail. The tile soon had a huge smear of blood and the flesh remained.
Horrified and frantic to get rid of it and to hide her sacrilege she wrapped the tile with the bloody host in a silk embroidered linen tablecloth decorated with lace. She went out by her barn and buried it in the garbage heap where garbage from the house was thrown and the filth from the stalls was heaped.
That evening her husband returned and no matter how bad he beat his horse the horse would not enter the barn. Normally the horse was very tame so this was very unusual. Eventually he got the horse into the barn but the horse would not walk straight into the barn. The horse would only enter sideways with his head towards the garbage heap and once inside it fell to its knees. Her husband became very angry and violent and accused Ricciarella of putting a spell on the barn which scared the horse. Of course, she denied knowing anything about it.
For seven years the Holy Eucharist remained buried in the garbage heap and during that whole time every animal that entered the barn did so sideways showing respect to the Eucharist. Finally after enduring guilt which left her no peace she decided to confess her sin. She went to a priest by the name of Giacomo Diotallevi at the monastery of St. Agostino in Laciano. She was so upset during the confession that she couldn’t speak. All she could do was sob. The priest tried to comfort her and tell her not to be afraid but she just couldn’t speak through the sobs. The priest decided to list different sins but she didn’t acknowledge any of them. Finally Father Giacomo said, “I have told you all the sins that can be committed. I do not know what your fault could be unless you killed God.”
“This is my sin!: she said. “I have killed God!” Ricciarella then told Father Giacomo what she had done. Surprised at what she told him he absolved her from her sin and arranged to have the Holy Eucharist removed from the garbage heap. After vesting himself he went to the garbage heap and with no concern for the filth he dug up the bloody Eucharist. It was still wrapped in the embroidered table linen and surprisingly the tablecloth, tile, and the Eucharist didn’t look contaminated. In fact, it looked as if it had been recently buried.
Father Giacomo took the , the Host, and the tablecloth back to the monastery. A few days later, after obtaining permission, he went to his native office Offida and showed the miracle to Father Michele Mallicano and many other noble citizens.
A silver reliquary was made to house the miraclulous Host as well as a piece of the wood from the holy Cross. High above the main alter in Offida in the Sactuary of Saint Augustine, also known as the Sanctuary of the Miraculous Eucharist, can be found the silver cross reliquary containing the miraculous Host, a glass box containing the tile that still shows the blood stain, and the tablecloth that the tile and host were wrapped in.
Pictures can be found here: http://www.therealpresence.org/eucharst/mir/english_pdf/Offida.pdf
Eucharist Miracles By Joan Carroll Cruz