Those Crazy Shovel Carrying Catholics

The exhumed body of Padre Pio went on display today 40 years after his deathFrom the Daily Mail Last updated at 19:20pm on 24th April 2008 click to read more.
Thousands throng Italian village as exhumed body of ‘miracle worker’ saint Padre Pio goes on display     The exhumed body of Padre Pio, a saint considered a miracle worker by his devotees, attracted thousands of pilgrims today as it went on display 40 years after his death.     During his lifetime the Italian monk was said to have had the stigmata, the bleeding wounds of Jesus’ crucifixion, on his hands and feet.     For display today, his face was reconstructed with a lifelike silicone mask of the type used in wax museums because decomposition had Padre Pio's face had to be remade with a silicone maskprogressed too far.     The mask was made by a London company which makes lifelike sculpted figures for museums.     Padre Pio, one of the Catholic Church’s most popular saints. Among the stories that surround the monk, who died at the age of 81, is one that he wrestled with the devil one night in his monastery cell and emerged bloodied and bruised.     His reputation has nevertheless been dogged by accusations of fraud.     A book last year suggested the monk injured himself to create the “stigmata”, perhaps using carbolic acid.     Church officials have denied he was a fake.     Heaving crowds waited to see his body, displayed in a crystal, Thousands of pilgrims travelled to San Giovanni Rotondo, in sourthern Italy, to see the saint's bodymarble and silver sepulchre in the crypt of the monastery in San Giovanni Rotondo, sourthern Italy, where Padre Pio spent most of his life.

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