A new book charting some of the miracles attributed to Saint Pio features amazing stories from people in Derry and Donegal.
Author and journalist Colm Keane has included 60 first hand accounts of miracles from all corners of Ireland in his new book, ‘The Scent of Roses.’
The stories include recoveries from various cancers, including tumours and leukaemia, heart problems, depression, arthritis and mutliple sclerosis. One of the stories is that of a girl, Charlene, from County Derry who speaks of her revival from a brain tumour in 2003.
Charlene felt unwell the day before her eleventh birthday with a sore head and sickness. She was rushed to hospital where a brain tumour was diagnosed.
“It turned out the brain tumour was the size of a man’s fist and was in the middle of my brain,” she explained. “The doctors told my family to prepare for the worst. They even thought I might die that night.”
Her family arranged for a man to visit the hospital with the mitt of Padre Pio and the family prayed to the saint around her bed.
“I could feel this pressure on the top of my head,” she said. “I wasn’t sure what was causing it but I thought it was the man pushing on my head. There were tears coming out of my eyes.”
Two days later the family were told Charlene’s tumour was benign, and although they originally thought she’d be in hospital for a month, she was discharged six days later. “I really believe that what happened was a miracle,” she said. “I was given a second chance in life. As a result I am now devoted to my faith and to Padre Pio.”
Another story features Pat from Donegal whose son was knocked down following a night out.
“He was in a very bad way,” he said. “His skull was fractured and he had swelling of the brain. He was unconscious. He was put on a life support machine and we were told things were bad. “
The son was visited in hospital by Bill McLaughlin who had the Padre Pio relic who told the family. “Your son will be grand. “ Almost immediately things improved and the swelling on his son’s brain started to come down. Initially they were told his son’s recovery would take 18 months but it happened much quicker.
“I attribute the big turning point- the bringing down of the swelling - to Padre Pio,” Pat said. That was critical. “
The Scent of Roses book is available in bookshops and online.