THE TRUTHS ABOUT STIGMATIZATION, AN ALTERNATIVE VIEW
Historical records have revealed that the earth life of each one of the stigmatized people was simply one continuous chain of suffering until their physical death. Any one who is familiar with Creation's Law of reciprocal Action which ensures that each of us faces the consequences of our past actions unconditionally, cannot but come to the conclusion that stigmatized people cannot be exceptions, because the Laws of Creation cannot be circumvented by anyone and they exist to ensure justice in the working of the Will of God.
The Perfection of the Will of God cannot permit of any injustice, not even by a hair's breath, thus there cannot be any other explanation than that these people are permitted, in the working of the Laws of God, which also manifest His Love, to atone for their past misdeeds against Christ in particular so that their sins against the Son of God may be forgiven.
The first historically verified stigmatization is attributed to Franz of Assisi. He lived in the 13th Century. Since then until the death of the Franciscan father Pio Von, Piereleina in Italy in 1968, more than 300 cases of stigmatization are known.
One of the most widely published cases is that of Theresa Neuman of Konnerseuth in Bavaria, Germany. Her stigmatization started on March 4, 1926, although she was born on April 8, 1898 during the night of Good Friday/ Holy Saturday.The stigmatization started first with a wound near her heart. In the following suffering which occurred every Friday during Lent of 1926 not only the range of her vision enlarged, but with each suffering more bleeding stigmata appeared.
Pastor Joseph Naber from Konnerseuth reported about Theresa's condition on Good Friday 1926; he wrote: 'When I together with another Priest, visited her on Good Friday after lunch, we found her lying in great torture, the eyes clogged with blood, two streamlets of blood running down her cheeks, pale like a dying person. Until 3 o'clock, the Hour of Death of the Saviour, she struggled in terrible agony of death…During this death agony on Good Friday, she had viewed all the sufferings of the Saviour, beginning on the Mount of Olives down to Calvary , and had shared it in a very intense way, even his abandonment on the Cross.
At that time, she had felt severe pain on the upper side of her hands and feet. Now, both hands and feet show kind of round, open wounds, out of them runs pure blood. Already several weeks before Easter suddenly a longish wound broke open in the area of her heart'. At times, a lot of pure blood came out of this wound. The Medical Doctor had scrutinized all these wounds'.
Following Good Friday in 1926, the five wounds remained open for the next 14 days. They were always wet, but the amount of bleeding varied. Her parents thought that these suddenly new developed wounds had to be cured, and tried to achieve some improvement with household remedies. Since these did not show any result, they called the physician, Dr. Seidl from Waldsassen. The form of the wounds surprised Dr. Sedl, especially the extent of the wound of the side, 3.5cm long and 1cm wide (1.38×0.4inch). He prescribed an ointment. The treatment caused a severe swelling of the wounds of her hands, feet and side.
Therese was seized by an almost unbearable pain, she hardly could endure it. Because of this, the parents finally removed the bandages with the ointment and as a result, the pain subsided rapidly and, eventually, disappeared. Dr. Seidl was astonished about the peculiarity of the wounds, which as long as they were left alone-neither got infected nor purulent. 'Henceforth, he refrained from all treatment, but wrapped the wounds with bandage only.' Following this advice, Therese always was wearing a head-scarf and gloves with cut-off fingers to protect the scars of the wounds of her hands. Never again occurred an infection or festering of the wounds.
The stigmata never healed. For the rest of her life the wounds were clearly visible in the palm and on the back of her hands, and on the sole and the upper side (instep) of her feet. Until her death in 1962, the painful bleeding of the stigmata connected with the Friday-sufferings occurred 780 times, whereas the wounds of scourging and her head wounds started to bleed during the time of passion only.
Squadron Leader A. F. Adeyemi writes from Ibadan.