September 8th : On the island, this is a day of devotion to the Virgin Mary

Celebrating September 8th : A lovely story that has been handed down for the celebration of the devotion of the Virgin Mary, on this day: September 8th – and more specifically from Pancheraccia :  Vescovatu 8th Sept

‘In the course of the 18th century, a 12 year old child went with her mother to the woods, about 3/4h away from the village of Pancheraccia, so they could gather bundles of wood.

It so happened, she got lost and began to cry, complaining she was thirsty too – at that moment, the Blessed Virgin appeared and asked her why she was crying. “I’m lost and I’m thirsty” she replied. At these words, the Blessed Virgin made a hole in the ground and water appeared – “drink” she said, “and tell the people of this village to build a chapel here”. “Yes” said the child, “but, the people will not believe me”. Our Lady replied “as proof, here is a indelible sign of the cross on your hand, and within one year, you will no longer be in this world”. The event verified this prophecy.

The village of Pancheraccia had only a poor population of around 200 souls. Nevertheless, they all set to work and the maquis was cleared, and the chapel built to Our Lady of Pancheraccia.

Around 1852, the old statue was replaced by a white marble one. Witnesses of this transition saw lightning crown the old statue when it was withdrawn from its’ niche. The new marble statue, which is the same one venerated today, represents Our Lady standing with the infant Jesus sitting on her left arm, and holding the world in his hands. With her right arm, she lightly supports the child’s foot, they both look straight in front and she appears ready to walk in order to offer the world he who is ‘the way, the truth and the light’. This modest set of perfect harmony, reminds us of ancient statues, and inspires great devotion.

Many graces have been obtained by the intercession of the ‘Madonna’ of Pancheraccia.

One day, a poor man covered in a type of leprosy came to the chapel. He spent the night in the hallway, beside the famous source – in the morning, when the priest arrived with the whole population in order to celebrate Holy Mass, the man had been completely healed. His skin had fallen to his feet, like a garment, so much so, that it had to be taken away with a stick and buried. On another occasion, a poor woman came to pray for her sick husband, and vowed to give a new altar cloth if, upon her return home she would find her husband healed – Our Lady granted her this grace.’

Source: Vescovato U Viscuvatu – Casinca Corse
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