Science, miracles, and divine intervention


How is supernatural intervention in a miracle for canonization putpose proved? How could we assume a divine intervention when a miracle is happened beyond natural reason? Could it be due still a natural explanation which science has not discovered yet?


Well for example if someone who has advanced cancer suddenly is free of tumours, I think that could qualify as a miraculous occurence.

I think that was one of the miracles for St. John Paul II



I was asking whether a miracle is due to a divine intervention or due to a natural explanation which the science has not discovered yet hence appearing miraculous to us. What does differentiate? between these two



The miracle must have no possible scientific explanation. In the case of healing, it must be a scientifically dramatic anamoly. It must contradict the laws of science directly. For example, one of JPII’s miracles was a nun in terminal stage Parkinson’s disease getting up and going about her day with no signs that she had ever had the disease in the first place. A miracle which was examined scientifically after JPII was canonized, but not within the process of canonisation, was that a boy with muscular atrophy in his legs one day stood up, walked to JPII’s tomb and kissed it. The boy’s legs were found to have been completely restored of strength.

In these cases, the damage Parkinson’s did to the nun’s nerves vanished over night and the boy’s muscles defied the law of conservation of matter to gain the muscular mass needed to support himself.


More than one panel of medical doctors comes together and says:“This is not only impossible according to the laws of science, and unprecedented, but science proves clearly it isn’t possible, it could never be, that matter was created out of nothing, that entire organs regenerated into functionality over night, that the laws of physics, chemistry, everything we know, was outright violated in its very principle. And we have not only numerous credible witnesses but also material proof of recent medical examinations of before/after state.”


Yes. They do have non-Christian scientists examine the patients (not every time but it does happen) and the so-called “devil’s advocate” position on the panel makes sure that the assessments have no room for a scientific cure. The “devil’s advocate” position actually got it’s name from this position on the panel to actively attempt to stop the canonization from going forward. The medical examination is one of the aspects in which he must act against the declaration of a miracle to simply prove a medical explanation is possible.

If the medical examinations do not concur, then the miracle is discarded pretty much outright.


It is called spontaneous remission. It is a natural phenomenon.


Why are these so-called scientific investigations not published in peer-reviewed journals like all other scientific claims?


The Catholic Church has certain conditions to declare an event a miracle. These reported miracles are rigorously tested as CRM brother explains.


Doctor patient confidentiality. To examine a case, all examinations and consultations which have been done by 3rd party doctors are submitted to the Church under non-disclosure agreements. When a miracle has been approved, the Church still needs permission of the person to whom the miracle has been given to promulgate even the bare bones of the case to the public. It is a matter concerning the Church itself. It declares it’s findings as a Church. If the one to whom the miracle is given wishes to make a secondary public examination, it is their prerogative but under the laws of the Church and Vatican City, the investigations done by the Congregation for the Causes of Saints are private.


Modern Catholic Dictionary:

MIRACLE. A sensibly perceptible effect, surpassing at least the powers of visible nature, produced by God to witness to some truth or testify to someone’s sanctity. (Etym. Latin miraculum , miracle, marvel; from mirari , to wonder.)


So if that happens you are prepared to call it a miracle?


Satan and the other demons CANNOT perform miracles.

A miracle is something that is produced by God alone!


By all means google it.

What you will not find as @CRM_Brother said is “Doctor patient confidentiality.” because in most of the miracles the person cured is still living and wants to live in privacy. The same way no one can consult your “medical records” at an hospital.

The “canonization processes” goes through several stages and “miracle cures” are just one part of the process. When processes do get released -as was the case in Fátima- the entire documentation takes years to compile and organize and will result in dozens of volumes only historians would read. The original documents, and pertaining medical process, will be in certain restricted archives first at the respective dioceses and then in Rome. Accredited researches can consult those process. Only in rare cases do they get published in the entirety.


Actually, today you need “3D hard evidence” by way of x-rays, ultrasounds, and CAT scans.


They are, you haven’t researched the literature.


Medical doctors are the ones qualified, not engineers - get over yourself.


Please don’t be confrontational. The Congregation for Saints Causes conduct robust investigations and obtain whatever they need, witness statements and so on.

Some years ago, off the coast of Brazil, a submarine accidentally collided with a Japanese vessel while surfacing. The hull of the sub had been breached, and water was rushing in. The captain, hoping to save as many men as possible, had to open a door/hatch. He prayed to a saint to ask for God’s intervention. He said he saw a bright light and knew he could open it. Naval experts were brought in and concluded no one could open it. He would have had to overcome tons of water pressure.

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