Miracle? Nun exhumed 4 years after death shows no signs of decay
The small rural town of Gower, Missouri, has become an unexpected pilgrimage destination as news spreads about the remarkable state of preservation of Sister Wilhelmina Lancaster’s exhumed body. Despite being buried without embalming in a simple wood coffin, Sister Lancaster’s body showed minimal signs of decomposition four years after her burial. Hundreds of people, intrigued by the “miracle in Missouri,” have traveled to Gower, marveling at the remarkable preservation and finding solace in what they believe to be a testament of faith and hope.
Sister Wilhelmina Lancaster: A Life Devoted to Service:
Sister Wilhelmina Lancaster, the founder of the Benedictine Sisters of Mary, Queen of the Apostles, passed away in May 2019 at the age of 95. Throughout her life, she demonstrated a deep commitment to her religious calling and fought to preserve traditional practices within her order. Known for her devotion to the traditional Latin mass and her insistence on wearing a habit, Sister Lancaster’s unwavering faith and determination became defining characteristics of her life and legacy.
The Astonishing Discovery:
Last Thursday, Benedictine nuns, adhering to customary practices, exhumed Sister Lancaster’s coffin to transfer it to the chapel’s altar beneath. To their astonishment, they found her body remarkably well-preserved, defying the expectations of decay. Mother Abbess Cecilia Snell, the first to observe the intact foot through a crack in the coffin, described her initial disbelief at the sight. As the coffin was fully opened, the nuns were greeted by a body that exhibited minimal signs of decay, with Lancaster’s facial features and physical attributes largely intact.
A Symbol of Faith and Hope:
The preservation of a body, unaffected by the natural process of decomposition, has been considered a mark of holiness within the Roman Catholic Church. While it does not automatically qualify an individual for sainthood, it has intrigued and inspired believers for centuries. Sister Wilhelmina’s remarkably preserved body has prompted a surge of devout Catholics to travel to Gower, some covering hundreds of miles, to witness this extraordinary phenomenon. Visitors have described the experience as moving, with tears flowing and a profound sense of meaning and faith.
Addressing the Phenomenon:
Bishop James Johnston, of the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph, released a statement acknowledging the widespread interest and raising important questions regarding Sister Wilhelmina Lancaster’s preserved remains. He emphasized the need to protect the integrity of her mortal remains and announced plans for a thorough investigation into the unexplainable events surrounding her body.
Continuing the Legacy:
Sister Wilhelmina Lancaster’s body will remain on display at the chapel in Gower until May 29, allowing more individuals to witness the remarkable preservation. Afterward, her body will be placed in a glass case for protection. As her story continues to captivate the hearts and minds of those who encounter it, Sister Lancaster’s life and the mysterious preservation of her body serve as a source of inspiration, faith, and hope for believers.