April 2

St. Mary, Cairo, Egypt

On April 2, 1968, people noticed a white light in the shape of a veiled figure over St. Mary's Coptic Church in the Zeitoun district of Cairo. Traffic stopped. Onlookers shouted "Virgin Mary," an identification confirmed when the figure turned to kneel before the cross. For the next three years, thousands saw the silent apparition, which lasted up to nine hours at a time, often accompanied by purple incense and smaller white lights resembling doves. Although the black-and-white photographs available all show a faceless blob, witnesses reported that "her features were clear." Both Christians and Muslims, including President Abdul Nasser, watched the various poses and movements of the form above the church. But there were other apparitions too, some speaking, some bringing healings, some inside the church, some in believers' dreams. Police and church officials investigated the phenomena and found no evidence of trickery. The Coptic Orthodox built a new cathedral across the street from St. Mary's. (Picture from Our Lady of Zeitun Online, www.zeitun-eg.org.)

Also commemorated this date:

bulletNotre-Dame de Savone, Paris, France. Chapel blessed, 1674.
bulletMadonna della Castagna, Borghetto di Vara, La Spezia, Liguria, Italy (Madonna of the Chestnut). Apparition, 1779.
bulletMadonna delle Grazie, Jesi, Ancona, Marche, Italy

Where We Walked ~~~ Mary Ann Daly