Little Audrey

By Michael K. Jones

UPDATE: Little Audrey Santo died Saturday April 14, 2007 in her family home here in Massachusetts. Her family was with her as were several priest. She passed very quietly and peacefully from cardiac arrest.  As you may recall, Audrey was 3 years old when the accident happened that placed her in the semi-coma, she was 23 years old at the time of her death..

Thousands of curious people are debating whether Audrey Marie Santo is at the center of religious miracles or if not, what's behind the mysterious phenomenon.

On August 9, 1987, at 11:03 a.m., this 3-year-old girl nearly drowned in her grandmother's swimming pool. An overdose of Phenobarbital at the hospital resulted in a coma like state called Akinetic Mutism. Unable to move (except for fingers and eyes) Little Audrey remains on life support at home.

After an outpouring of prayer, Audrey's mother Linda made arrangements to bring her daughter to Medjugorje. Taken on a special stretcher with oxygen tank and other life support equipment, Audrey was brought to the apparition site of Our Lady, in Medjugorje.

During the apparition Audrey appeared lively shaking her head yes, then fell into cardiac arrest and almost died.

Since the accident, Audrey has been the focus of a series of growing church-related mystical experiences. Miraculous healings, reports of bilocation, the scent of roses, and spiritual conversions have surrounded this suffering child. At least three of Audrey's nurses who were of different faiths converted to Catholicism after caring for her. Countless other pilgrims, priests, nuns, doctors, and skeptics have been touched by God through this little girl who is unable to speak or even smile.

Other reported phenomena focus more on the child's status as a victim soul -- a claim made over the last century by a handful of chronically ill women, among them Little Rose, the Stigmatized Ecstatic of Woonsocket, Rhode Island, who developed an intense local following in the 1920s and '30s. Based on observations of Audrey's elevated heart rate, nurses say she suffers acutely between the hours of noon and three on Holy Week, when Christ is believed to have hung on the cross. Her family's "spiritual guide," the Reverend George Joyce, who heard about Audrey after he visited Medjugorje, says that she has been "crucified on her bed." In an interview for the 1997 video The Story of Little Audrey Santo: The Victim Soul Who Is Bringing People to Jesus, Linda Santo tells how, when she was visited by a woman with ovarian cancer, Audrey manifested symptoms of the illness; X-rays of Audrey's ovaries, her mother says, showed not a tumor but "a little angel." Another time, Audrey developed a vivid crimson rash; the family says she was taking on the side effects of chemotherapy for a visiting cancer patient. Audrey also has developed stigmata, in which the five wounds of the crucified Christ spontaneously appear on the body.

Unable to eat solid food Little Audrey has baffled medical science by three different phenomena. She doesn't have any bedsores despite remaining in bed for 12 years; she can stop her mechanical respirator from working and she can stop the flow of her feeding tube to her stomach. The latter is called, "Audery's fasting". The feeding tube automatically feeds Audrey's stomach liquid food by gravity and it is "impossible" to stop it. Yet, it seems when Audrey decides to fast, it stops.

Strangely enough, although she is unable to eat any solid food, on the date of her First Communion she swallowed the Eucharistic Host. Since this time she receives the Host daily.

Over the years the mystical happening surrounding Little Audrey have escalated. On several occasions, the two gold engraved angels on the tabernacle door have wept fragrant oil. Scientists have not yet been able to classify some of the oils, stating its origin as "unknown." Numerous other religious statues and pictures in Audrey's room have also wept oil and sometimes blood.

The Missionary Image of Our Lady of Guadalupe has made many visits to Audrey's home. During an early visit, Guardian of the image, Dan Lynch, came within a few inches of Audrey's face and told her he loved her. He asked her to please offer all of her sufferings for this apostolate. A tear fell from Audrey's eye.

During a Mass celebrated by a Bishop during the first visit of the Missionary Image on January 1992, the host began to bleed. The apostolate gave Audrey an image of Our Lady of Guadalupe, and soon after, the image began weeping tears of oil.

The Missionary Image returned to Audrey's home for the anniversary of her drowning in August 1994. The Image began to profusely weep tears of oil.

On March 28, 1995 the image again returned. The host that had turned a reddish tinge and that had been reserved for Audrey since the Image's first visit in 1992 began to bleed.

On Good Friday, 1996, the tabernacle in Audrey's room began bleeding, prompting the Bishop to state his plans to open an investigation.

Several Eucharistic Miracles have taken place. Blood from some of the miraculous communion hosts tested by an independent laboratory has proven to be "human blood." Several priests, doctors, scientists, theologians, and psychologists are part of the team of specialists independently investigating these supernatural events.

Father Rene Laurentin, world-famous Marian expert, states that within Audrey's home reigns "a deep peace where conversions and healing sparkle."

There have been many accounts of healings and conversion associated with a visit to see Little Audrey. Sheryle Parolisi of Methuen, Massachusetts became a believer after praying at Audrey's bedside in hopes that the 71 one pound teen could help. Sheryle accounts that her son Joey was recovering from injuries suffered in a motorcycle crash. When she returned home from Audrey's house her son met her at the door without his cane or crutches. "It was the first time he could walk on his own since the accident," she says. Joey told his mother, he just had a feeling he could walk, and he did.

After nine surgeries to repair his battered body, his pelvis which was shattered in 5 places, and a leg which was torn wide open, he was not able to walk until after the prayer session at Little Audrey's home.

Just a few months ago, Channel 7, Boston did a report on Little Audrey. On April 7, 1999, the television show, "Unsolved Mysteries" did a segment about her as well. Ellen Barry from the Boston Phoenix magazine has recently published an article on Audrey. John Clote, a Catholic filmmaker has directed a 1996 documentary called, "Audrey's Life."

Related Little Audrey information center     

Official testing the weeping oil from weeping icons and statues in Little Audrey's room, by Boguslaw Lipinski Phd  Testing weeping oils

CLICK >>>Pictures from Audrey's House

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