This is the miraculous event that made Pope John Paul II a saint, as described in the article entitled 'Costa Rican woman who elevated the Pope to sainthood: "Praying to John Paul II saved me''':

Floribeth Mora Díaz was told there was no hope. Taken to hospital in Costa Rica, she was devastated to discover that her persistent headaches were the result of an aneurysm in the brain. The doctors said her days were numbered. [...] 

Alejandro Vargas Román, the neurosurgeon who treated Mrs Mora, is convinced that her recovery is the result of divine intervention.

"Of course it's true," he told Costa Rican newspaper La Nacion. "I am a Catholic, and as a doctor with many years of experience I do believe in miracles. No one has been able to provide a medical explanation for what happened."

Mr Román was questioned by Vatican authorities in San Jose, who concluded that she was saved by a miracle.

"I talked to the priests, but maybe they were specialised in something," he said. "They weren't doctors; they were theologians or lawyers, so my role was that of medical investigation."

But he is adamant that the science is sound.

"We have to remember that the arteriography [images of the blood vessels] was seen by various people within this hospital, and also shared at a symposium in Mexico. The images are stored here. Any person who needs to see the studies; they are here," he said. 

From another source:

"The neurosurgeon who admitted and diagnosed Mora, however, denies he gave her a month to live. Alejandro Vargas says he forecast only a 2 percent chance Mora could bleed into her brain again within a year of her diagnosis, possibly killing her. 

"She was sent home with medication that would reduce her blood pressure and was advised to improve her diet so as not to raise her cholesterol levels and thus decrease the chance of her having a second bleeding episode. She was sedated because the headaches were too sharp," he told Reuters. "We didn't send her home to be sedated and wait until she died in her sleep."

Thus, the God of the Gaps reigns supreme. Find a pocket of ignorance, add religion, some wild exaggeration, bake for 2 minutes, and God appears.

Crackpot: How do you explain X?
Me: I can't.
Crackpot: See? God did it. It's the ONLY explanation! The science is sound!

Tags: II, John, Paul, Pope, miracles, saints

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RE: "advanced spirituality is a difficult subject and requires experts to make it clear" - exactly the viewpoint of the Catholic Church, when for a thousand years, from 600 - 1600 CE, it forbade, upon penalty of death, possession of any Bible in a language other than Latin. "We know more than you do, so we will tell you what to think!"

Once more, Paynton betrays his closet theist tendencies.

the Catholic Church, when for a thousand years, from 600 - 1600 CE, it forbade, upon penalty of death, possession of any Bible in a language other than Latin.

LOL!  Too funny, @arch!  Where do you come up with this nonsense?

Of course, most of the original text was in Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek, and we were preserving those texts.  Somehow we managed not to execute all the abbots and monks who had those non-Latin bibles. 

Saints Cyril and Methodius translated the Bible into Slavic (developing the Cyrillic alphabet along the way) during that period.  There are extant Saxon translations from the period as well, some attributed to the Venerable Bede.  

It doesn't seem likely that we were killing people off for non-Latin biblical translations if we were at the same time canonizing them as saints.  What rubbish!

Please tell me what part did not happen:

    By 500 CE, the Bible had been translated into over 500 languages. Just one century later, by 600 CE, it has been restricted to only one language: the Latin Vulgate. The only organized and recognized church at that time in history was the Catholic Church of Rome, and they refused to allow the scripture to be available in any language other than Latin. Those in possession of non-Latin scriptures would be executed!
     This was because only the priests were educated to understand Latin, which gave the church ultimate power to rule without question, to deceive, and to extort money from the masses. Nobody could question their “Biblical” teachings, because few people of the time could read at all, and still fewer, other than priests, could read Latin. The church capitalized on this forced-ignorance through the 1,000 year period from 400 CE to 1,400 CE known as the Dark Ages, during which time, Europe stagnated.
    During this same period, at least from 800 onward, the Islamic nations encouraged the sciences and the arts, and their civilization thrived and went on, not only to occupy much of the Levant, including Jerusalem, but a significant portion of Europe as well, for hundreds of years.
    Despite Papal edicts, over the next 700 years, there were numerous limited translations, of which, Caedmon's rendering of Bible stories into Anglo Saxon in 680 CE, and parts of the Bible King Alfred had translated into the vernacular in 995 CE, are worthy of mention.
    In the late 1300’s, the secret society of Culdees chose John Wycliffe, an Oxford professor, scholar, and theologian. well-known throughout Europe for his opposition to the teachings of the organized Church which he believed to be contrary to the Bible, to lead the world out of the Dark Ages. Wycliffe has been called the “Morning Star of the Reformation”. That Protestant Reformation, for believers, was about one thing: getting the Word of God back into the hands of the masses in their own native language, so that the corrupt church would be exposed and, for those, the message of salvation in Christ alone, by scripture alone, through faith alone, would be proclaimed again.
    The first hand-written English language Bible manuscripts were produced in the 1380's CE by Wycliffe. With the help of his followers, called the Lollards, his assistant Purvey, and many other faithful scribes, Wycliffe produced dozens of English language manuscript copies of the scriptures. They were translated out of the Latin Vulgate, which was the only source text available to Wycliffe. The Pope was so infuriated by his teachings and his translation of the Bible into English, that 44 years after Wycliffe's death, he ordered his bones to be dug-up, crushed, and scattered in the river!
    One of Wycliffe’s followers, John Hus, actively promoted Wycliffe’s ideas: that people should be permitted to read the Bible in their own language, and they should oppose the tyranny of the Roman church that threatened anyone possessing a non-Latin Bible with execution. Hus was burned at the stake in 1415, with Wycliffe’s manuscript Bibles used as kindling for the fire. The last words of John Hus were that, “in 100 years, God will raise up a man whose calls for reform cannot be suppressed.”
    Almost exactly 100 years later, in 1517, Martin Luther nailed his famous 95 Theses of Contention (a list of 95 issues of heretical theology and crimes of the Roman Catholic Church) onto the church door at Wittenberg. The prophecy of Hus had come true! Martin Luther went on to be the first person to translate and publish the Bible in the commonly-spoken dialect of the German people; a translation more appealing than previous German Biblical translations. Foxe’s Book of Martyrs records that in that same year, 1517, seven people were burned at the stake by the Roman Catholic Church for the crime of teaching their children to say the Lord’s Prayer in English rather than Latin.
    Though there can be no doubt that Luther exhibited great courage in opposing the full force and extended reach of the Vatican, one must be a little conservative in the lavishment of praise of his work. Luther also helped spread anti-Jewish sentiments with his preaching and books such as his "The Jews and their lies," all supported through his interpretation of the Bible. One should not forget that Hitler (a Christian and great admirer of Luther) and his holocaust probably could not have occurred without Luther’s influence and the support of Bible-believing German Christians.
    Johann Gutenberg invented the printing press in the 1450's, and the first book to ever be printed was a Latin language Bible, printed in Mainz, Germany. Gutenberg’s Bibles were surprisingly beautiful, as each leaf Gutenberg printed was later colorfully hand-illuminated. Born as “Johann Gensfleisch” (John Gooseflesh), he preferred to be known as “Johann Gutenberg” (John Beautiful Mountain).
     Ironically, though he had created what many believe to be the most important invention in history, Gutenberg was a victim of unscrupulous business associates who took control of his business and left him in poverty. Nevertheless, the invention of the movable-type printing press meant that Bibles and books could finally be effectively produced in large quantities in a short period of time. This was essential to the success of the Reformation.
    Due to the original Greek having hundreds of custom symbols, even with the advent of printing around 1450 CE, it took until 1516 CE for the Greek to be widely available, in a special reduced Greek character set.
    In 1514 CE, printer John Froben, of Basle, engaged Desiderius Erasmus, who produced a dual Greek/Latin version and the Greek New Testament was printed for the first time in 1516, based on only five Greek manuscripts, the oldest of which dated only as far back as the twelfth century. With minor revisions, Erasmus' Greek New Testament came to be known as the Textus Receptus or the "received texts." It was hardly that, however, as the edition was full of errors, and not traceable to particular Greek originals. It was an instant success, reprinted with corrections several times, and led to nearly 200 successors, all suffering from errors to a certain degree between 1516 and 1550. The damage was done, the world was flooded with erroneous Greek text.
    By 1522 CE, the Polyglot Bible was published. The Old Testament was in Hebrew, Aramaic, Greek, and Latin and the New Testament in Latin and Greek. Erasmus used the Polyglot to revise later editions of his New Testament.
    In 1525-35, William Tyndale produced his English New Testament, the first printed English Bible, based mainly on the Greek. It did not have the shortcomings of Wycliffe, and was a landmark in method and style. Tyndale made use of the Polyglot in his translation of the Old Testament into English, which became the Myles Coverdale's Bible, the first complete printed Bible, published in 1535. Tyndale spent his last days in imprisonment and exile. He was hunted by the establishment, but his enemies finally caught him and burned him at the stake in 1537. Because of his celebrity, however, they compassionately strangled him first.
    Now, within a very short time, because of the political circumstances in England, and the reformation on the continent, a move was made by the Vatican towards acceptance, though not in time to save William Tyndale. 1537 saw the Thomas Matthew, a revision of Tyndale by John Rogers (80 Books), and 1539 saw the Taverners, a revision of the Matthew. But 1539 was a landmark, as it saw the publishing of the Great Bible, or First Authorized Version. With all 80 books, it is often called the Cranmer after that archbishop’s preface to the 2nd edition.
    1550 CE saw the publication of Robert Stephanus's Textus Recepticus, whose third edition became the standard text. He is credited with devising the chapter and verse delineations used to this day. 1633 CE saw further refinement by the Elzevir family of Dutch printers and publishers, and the "final" major revision is the 1873 Oxford edition.
    Work now gathered pace, as did the heat generated by the reformation. The Geneva Bible (1560) was a revision of The Great. It was the first Study Bible, with less than flattering comments about the Catholic Church. It was written by reformers in exile in Geneva, and was supported by John Calvin and John Knox, both Protestant Reformation leaders. It was a full 80-Book Bible, based on the Tyndale Bible, and remained popular for 100 years after the King James Version, especially with Puritans in the United States. It was also notable as the first Bible to have printed verse numbers.
    In 1568, the Bishop's Bible, 80 Books, translated by scholarly bishops, became the 2nd Authorized Bible, intended to supersede the Great and the Geneva.
    In 1582 Rome surrendered its Latin only edict. In 1609-10 the Douay/Rheimes Bible was published, the first Catholic English translation (80 Books), translated from the Vulgate. It became the seed bible for nearly all Catholic Bibles.

Seriously, @arch, you seem like an intelligent fellow.  Surely you know how to do proper research and evaluation of the likely veracity of various sources.   This is all nonsense.

I'm only going to do the first paragraph for you or I'll be up all night.

By 500 CE, the Bible had been translated into over 500 languages. Just one century later, by 600 CE, it has been restricted to only one language: the Latin Vulgate.

False.  And really quite funny, since "Vulgate" is a modernization of versio vulgata, which means "commonly used translation" or "translation into the common tongue".  It wasn't adopted as official by the Roman Church until the 16th century, and that only made it official alongside the older texts.

The only organized and recognized church at that time in history was the Catholic Church of Rome

False.  At that time all five of the original Patriarchates were still thriving, in Rome, Constantinople, Antioch, Jerusalem, and Alexandria.

and they refused to allow the scripture to be available in any language other than Latin.

That would be pretty funny, given that the Patriarchate of Constantinople was, you know, in Greece, speaking Greek...

Those in possession of non-Latin scriptures would be executed!

Riiiight.  Off with their heads!

A full bible at that time cost a fortune, and was likely owned by either a church or some wealthy patron, like someone in the Emperor's Court.  I wonder who we sent to carry out the sentence, since Rome was busy fending off Visigoths at the time. ;-)

I can only assume you pulled this nonsense from some anti-Catholic site somewhere.  Exercise a bit of healthy skepticism.

Whew, Bob, I am SO relieved to hear that William Tyndale was never strangled, and that John Hus, John Wycliff's associate, was never burned at the stake.

You seem inordinately fond of Wikipedia and seem like a relatively intelligent fellow, let's take a look at what Wiki has to say about Hus:

He was burned at the stake for heresy against the doctrines of the Catholic Church, including those on ecclesiology, the Eucharist, and other theological topics. Hus was a key predecessor to the Protestant movement of the sixteenth century, and his teachings had a strong influence on the states of Europe, most immediately in the approval of a reformist Bohemian religious denomination, and, more than a century later, on Martin Luther himself.

After his death, between 1420 and 1431, followers of Hus' religious teachings (known as Hussite) rebelled against their Roman Catholic rulers and defeated five consecutive papal crusades in what became known as the Hussite Wars. A century later, as many as 90% of inhabitants of the Czech lands were non-Catholic and followed the teachings of Hus and his successors.

And Tyndale:

Tyndale’s translations were condemned in England, where his work was banned and copies burned. Catholic officials, prominently Thomas More, charged that he had purposely mistranslated the ancient texts in order to promote anti-clericalism and heretical views, In particular they cited the terms “church,” “priest,” “do penance” and “charity,” which became in the Tyndale translation “congregation,” “senior” (changed to "elder" in the revised edition of 1534), “repent” and “love,” challenging key doctrines of the Roman Church. Betrayed to church officials in 1536, he was defrocked in an elaborate public ceremony and turned over to the civil authorities to be strangled to death and burned at the stake. His last words are said to have been, "Lord, open the eyes of the king of England!"

"turned over to the civil authorities to be strangled to death and burned at the stake" doesn't that sound just a bit like the Sanhedrin to you?

Excellent, @arch.  Since you did not dispute any of my corrections above, I take it that you recognize that the original text you posted was inaccurate and highly biased, and should be dismissed as a valid source.  Well done.

Now you want to move from general claims about the Catholic Church over the course of an entire millenium to particular cases of the behavior of individual churchmen in countries relatively far from Rome, during the specific time period of the political and social upheaval of the Reformation.  History is not my field, but I guess I'm happy to try to point you to better sources.  I can always wander by colleagues in that department.

What I don't see is that it has any relevance to anything here on TA.  I'm perfectly willing to grant that individual Americans and groups of Americans have done bad things at various times in history, particularly during periods of social upheaval.  That isn't an indictment of America, or of the philosophy of American Democracy, however.

Would you also grant that the behaviors of individual churchmen, or groups of churchmen, are not sufficient to indict all of Catholicism, or the philosophy of Catholic theology?

RE: "Since you did not dispute any of my corrections above" - sorry, just as you decided (above) that you were only intending to address my first paragraph, my time, which is just as valuable as yours, allowed me only to dispute a couple of pieces of the comment you labeled, "nonsense."

I'm not like Gallup with his bulldog tenacity - I got my information from sources I consider reliable, and doubt that any of yours are any less biased - unlike Gallup, I have neither the time nor inclination to argue with you ad nauseam, refuting tiny tidbits of your assertions, or spending hours relocating my original sources that will fall on deaf ears anyway.

Then you need to rethink the reliability of your sources, since what they're espousing is the intellectual equivalent of Young-Earth Creationism.    Ignoring evidence and complexity in order to tell a simplistic tale in sync with their worldview.

Actually, I think it's worse than the YECs, since its intent is to vilify a whole group of people, rather than just argue a position on natural history. 

Excellent, @arch.  Since you did not dispute any of my corrections above, I take it that you recognize that the original text you posted was inaccurate and highly biased, and should be dismissed as a valid source.  Well done.

Robert: *Craps into his hand and eats it* Ah-ha! You didn't puke, Arch! Your lack of response means you're highly biased, inaccurate, dismissed and oh yeah, you owe me a keg of beer too! Yeah! That's how I take it!

You gotta admit the guy is fascinating Arch, albeit in a sideshow act kind of way.

unlike Gallup, I have neither the time nor inclination to argue with you ad nauseam, refuting tiny tidbits of your assertions, or spending hours relocating my original sources that will fall on deaf ears anyway.

I certainly don't do it for the benefit of Robert's deaf ears. Robert is beyond redemption, beyond reason, even beyond aluminium foil hats and K-Y jelly.

But there are readers and lurkers, including newcomers who are 'on the fence' and accustomed to bending knee. TA has an extensive membership. It's for their benefit (and admittedly for my amusement as well).

When Robert engages the haughty dishonesty for God and religion I'm only too happy to engage him further. When he shoots himself in the foot, I'm only too pleased to hand him more ammo. I consider it a public service: I shine a spotlight on a fool and prolong his performance. Time well spent.

@Gallup - you can shorten it all, really (although it has it's entertaining elements) with a picture (naturally).

LOL.  Sorry, not bald. ;-)

Ah, but you didn't reject the caption, therefore you wholeheartedly agree with it!

(Any similarity in the above sentence to Prof Bob's earlier behavior is completely intentional and intended as satire. No fronkeys were harmed in the making of this comment.)

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