People in the US are flocking to see the ‘Miracle in Missouri’ after word spread of a recently exhumed remains of a nun which showed little sign of decomposition.
Sister Wilhelmina Lancaster founded the Benedictine Sisters of Mary, Queen of the Apostles in 1995. She passed away four years ago at the age of 95 and was buried in a simple wooden coffin.
However, the abbess and sisters decided to move her body to a final resting place inside the monastery chapel where tradition dictates founders and foundresses should be. But when unearthing her body, the Benedictine Sisters realised her body was intact, despite never being embalmed and cracks in the coffin leaving the body exposed to dirt and moisture.
Mother Abbess Cecilia, head of the monastery, examined the body first. She told the Global Catholic Network (EWTN) she first spotted “a completely full, intact foot” after which she “looked again more carefully”.
Then, she realised that despite the layer of mould that had grown to the crack in the coffin, Sister Wilhelmina’s body was intact.
“We think she is the first African American woman to be found incorrupt,” Mother Cecilia continued.
According to Catholic beliefs, some individuals become “incorruptible saints” because their bodies, either partially or completely, exhibit minimal signs of decay even after extended periods. This serves as a testament to the resurrection of the body and the promise of eternal life, and the reflection of extraordinary holiness.
Since Sister Wilhelmina’s exhumation, thousands have flocked to the monastery to pay in front of the body.
Lori Orcutt, took to Facebook to share her “once in a lifetime experience” visiting her.
She wrote: “Catholics from all over the country are flocking to this site. Today, we were one of several hundred in attendance to see this miracle first hand. There is no possible explanation, other than Divine. Sister will surely be declared a Saint one day. Sister Wilhelmina, pray for us!”.
Sister Wilhelmina’s body will be on display until 29th May.