Tags: Religion | virgin mary | statue | ecuador | survives | earthquake

Virgin Mary Statue Survives Ecuador Earthquake in Ruined Church

Virgin Mary Statue Survives Ecuador Earthquake in Ruined Church
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By    |   Thursday, 21 April 2016 08:31 PM

Catholics in Montecristi, Ecuador are praying to a statue of the Virgin Mary that miraculously survived last Saturday's massive earthquake in the South American nation.

Our Mother of Monserrat stands just three feet tall but has been a central figure in the history of the town since it arrived from Spain in the 16th century.

According to a New York Times story, the church that was named after the statue collapsed in a heap of bricks and dust during the 8.7-magnitude earthquake. Afterward, the Virgin Mary wearing gold robes and a crown was still standing tall, just as she always had been.

"She is the mother who has taken care of us through this earthquake," Rev. Ángel Toaquiza said, reports the Times. "And I think a sign of this is that she suffered no damage that day."

The statue has played a central role in the history of the town on a hill. According to the Times, Catholics flocked to the statue when priests were expelled from the country. And every November, pilgrims numbering in the hundreds of thousands come to the church to pray to the statue.

The earthquake, which claimed the lives of hundreds of people — including eight in Montecristi — has only strengthened Catholics' faith in the statue. Saturday evening mass had yet to begin when the earthquake struck.

"Thank God we hadn't started Mass when the bell tower fell. That was the miracle," Father Toaquiza told the Times.

One parishioner who lives next door to the church pointed out that the bellower fell inward instead of going out and landing on her house.

The earthquake killed a nun from Ireland, who worked at a school in Playa Prieta.

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Catholics in Montecristi, Ecuador are praying to a statue of the Virgin Mary that miraculously survived last Saturday's massive earthquake in the South American nation.
virgin mary, statue, ecuador, survives, earthquake
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2016-31-21
Thursday, 21 April 2016 08:31 PM
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