Eucharistic Miracle of
In Alatri’s Cathedral of Saint Paul the Apostle, there
is kept even today the reliquary
of the Eucharistic miraclethat occurred in 1228 andconsisted in a fragment of the Host turning into flesh. A young woman, in an effortto regain the love of hersweetheart, consulted asorceress who ordered herto steal a consecrated Host tomake a love potion. DuringMass, the young woman hida Host in a cloth. But whenshe got home, she realizedthat the Host had been
transformed into bleeding flesh.
This miracle has extensivedocumentation, includingfrom Pope Gregory IX.
he most authoritative testimony regardingthis miracle is found in the Bull
(March 13, 1228) written by PopeGregory IX in response to Bishop Giovanni V of Alatri. The text reads: “Gregory, Bishop andServant of the Servants of God, to VenerableBrother Bishop of Alatri, greetings and Apostolicblessing. We have received your letter, dearestbrother, in which you informed us of a certainyoung woman misguided by an evil woman, who, after having received from the priest theMost Holy Body of Christ, held the Sacred Hostin her mouth until the right moment to concealthe Holy Eucharist in a cloth. After three days,she discovered the same Body which she hadreceived in the form of bread transformed intoflesh, as everyone has been able to verify with
their own eyes. Because both women have humbly
revealed this to you, you desire our opinionregarding the punishment that should be im-posed upon them. First, we give thanks with allour strength to Him Who, though He alwaysoperates in marvelous ways, in this case repeatsmiracles and produces new wonders so that Hecalls to
sinners, converts evildoers and confoundsheretics
while strengthening faith in the truthof the Catholic
Church, sustaining hope and re-igniting charity.
Thus, dearest brother,
by meansof this apostolic letter, we dispose that youinflict a milder punishment on the young woman, whom we hold to have done this morefrom weakness than malice, especially becauseit can be believed that she has sufficiently repented in confessing her sin. To the instigator, who with her perversion pushed the young woman to commit sacrilege, apply those discipli-nary measures that we believe opportune to leaveto your judgment. She should also visit thenearest bishop so that she can humbly confess hercrime, imploring pardon with devout submis-sion.” The Pope interpreted this episode as a signagainst the widespread heresies regarding the RealPresence of Jesus in the Eucharist and pardonedthe two repentant women. A commemorativemedal was coined on the 750th anniversary of themiracle; one side showed the cathedral façade andthe reliquary, while the other a bust of PopeGregory IX with the Papal Bull.
Paintings in the Cathedral of Alatri which illustratethe various phases of the miracleThe 750th anniversary of the miracle was solemnly celebrated in1978. For the occasion, a medal was coined which on the front showsan image of Pope Gregory IX with the Papal Bull and on the back,the façade of the cathedral with the Host above
Monstrance where thereliquary of the miracle is keptChapel inside the cathedral where the reliquary of the miracleis kept
Cathedral of Saint Paulin AlatriBull
of PopeGregory IX Letter of the rector of Saint Mary alle Terme, datedMarch 22, 1888, in which hegives thanks for the gift of partof the reliquary of the IncarnateHost conserved in AlatriDetail of the reliquary
© 2006, Istituto San Clemente I Papa e Martire / Real Presence Eucharistic Education and Adoration Association
The chapel where theIncarnate Host is exposed