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Faithful relish Lenten link with statue’s ‘tears’

Maps

Updated: May 12, 2014 6:27AM



People are flocking to a statue of Mary in front of St. Mary Catholic Church in Griffith because they believe it is crying.

The 4-foot-tall statue, which sits a sunken garden between St. Mary Catholic Church and School, has attracted quite a few visitors since Monday night. After confession, students who stopped to pray at the statue reportedly saw a stain running down the statue’s right cheek and a water droplet was dripping off her chin.

By midday Thursday, there was no droplet, but there is a visible stain on the cheek.

The Rev. Theodore Mens, the church’s longtime pastor, said the phenomenon most likely is a natural one, due to evening dew or melting snow.

The statue has been present in the garden for at least 21 years, Mens said.

But some, such as Griffith resident Helen Richwalski, saw it as miraculous during the season of Lent.

“This is my home parish, where I was born and raised,” Richwalski said. “I’m very proud. The Blessed Mother has blessed me many times in my life.”

A steady stream of people walked by the statue Thursday to contemplate, pray and take photos.

Valparaiso resident Leonor Silva made a beeline for the painted white statue once she heard about it.

“I’ve never witnessed anything like this before,” Silva said. “It makes you think about faith and belief. Some things can’t be explained.”

Contributing: AP



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