In 1754, an event took place in Colombia that continues to baffle geologists and other scientists. This event was the miraculous appearance of the image of Our Lady of Las Lajas (Our Lady of the Rocks)
Have you heard of it? Most Catholics outside of Columbia are completely unaware of its existence. To be honest, I had never heard of it either until a few years ago. I came across the story of this incredible image while doing research for my book Champions of the Rosary: The History and Heroes of a Spiritual Weapon (http://fathercalloway.com/books-and-gifts/champions-rosary-history-and-heroes-spiritual-weapon
All my friends know that I absolutely love leading pilgrimages. http://www.pilgrimages.com/frcalloway/
In fact several times a year I lead pilgrimages to such places as Rome, Lourdes, Fatima, Guadalupe, Poland, and the Holy Land. One place I’ve never been on pilgrimage is Colombia. But after I learned about the miraculous image of Our Lady of Las Lajas, making a pilgrimage to Colombia is now on my bucket list. It might become a bucket list destination for you, too. Here’s why:
As the story goes, one day a woman named Maria Mueses de Quinones was walking with her deaf and mute daughter, Rosa, through a very treacherous and rocky area on their way home from a nearby village. When a storm broke out, Maria and her daughter took shelter in the rocky cliffs of a canyon. All of a sudden, little Rosa spoke for the first time, declaring that she saw a beautiful woman who was calling her.
Maria did not see or hear the woman, but was amazed that her daughter could now speak.
A few days later, Rosa disappeared from the village. Her mother instinctively knew to return to the rocky canyon where she would find her little girl. Incredibly, when Maria went to the rocks, she found Rosa playing with a little child whose mother stood nearby.
It was an apparition of the Virgin Mary and the child Jesus. Maria and her daughter decided to keep this event secret, but would frequently return to the rocks to pray and ask Our Lady for her permission.
After a few months, little Rosa suddenly fell ill and died. Distraught, Maria took her deceased daughter to the rocks to ask Our Lady to intercede with her Divine Son to bring Rosa back to life.
Miraculously, Rosa came back to life!
When Maria returned to the village and the people saw that Rosa was alive, their interest was piqued about this place where little Rosa had miraculously recovered her speech and even come back from death.
The villagers followed Maria and Rosa to the rocks to see the place themselves. While they were there, someone noticed a beautiful image of Our Lady on the rocks. Neither Maria nor Rosa had seen the image there before. No one knew who had painted it or where it had come from. In the beautiful image, Our Lady is holding the Child Jesus and handing St. dominic a rosary; the Child Jesus is extending a friar’s cord to St. Francis of Assisi.
After extensive investigations, civil authorities and scientists determined that the scene was not a painting at all. The image is miraculously part of the rock itself!
Geologists have since bored core samples from several places in the rock and discovered that there is no paint, dye, or pigment on the surface of the rock. The colors of the miraculous image are the colors of the rock itself and extend several feet deep inside the rock! The only man made aspects of the miraculous image are the crowns above the heads of Jesus and Mary that were later added by local devotees. For more than two centuries, the location has been a place of pilgrimage and devotion. In 1951, the Church authorized devotion to Our Lady under the title of “Our Lady of Las Lajas” and the church built around the image has been declared a minor basilica.
Isn’t this amazing! The entire Catholic world knows about the miraculous tilma of Our Lady of Guadalupe, but hardly anyone outside of Latin America knows about the incredible – image of Our Lady of las Lajas.
Whether or not I will ever make it to Colombia to see this incredible image remains unseen, but if you ever find yourself in Colombia be sure to visit this holy shrine. The basilica itself looks like something out of Lord of the Rings!
Our Lady of Las Lajas, pray for us!
By Father Donald Calloway, MIC Fr. Donald Calloway, MIC , has been a priest for 15 years and currently serves as Vicar Provincial and Vocation Director for the Congregation of Marian Fathers of the Immaculate Conception. He is the author of eleven books, a popular speaker at conferences, and frequently leads pilgrimages to Marian shrines around the world.
To find out more about his books and pilgrimages, go to http://www.fathercalloway.com
10 thoughts on “The Miraculous Image of Our Lady of Las Lajas by Fr. Donald Calloway, MIC”
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I read about this recently and passed it on to a friend. I want to believe that the image is a real miracle and don’t have any trouble believing.
I also read the following quote in the story I read previously;
“Geologists have since bored core samples from several places in the rock and discovered that there is no paint, dye, or pigment on the surface of the rock.”
When searching to determine who the scientists were who drilled these core samples (and exactly when) there is no record to be found.
If anyone can find a record of who did the investigating (as one can with The Turin Shroud, Padre Pio etc.) it would make a greater impression on people who have a harder time believing in miracles.
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Father Don Calloway states in a video that the “image seems to float above the rock” It the unbelievers could only see this! As for documentation I offer a fact about another apparition that the vatican likes to hide such! For instance as proof of Vatican dislike of the supernatural. the full message of LaSalette was released by the error of Paul VI when he took the Index off the forbidden list. Out came Melanie’s message with it. It has been researched and printed by Fordham University . Editor and researcher Dr. Paul Halsall firstname.lastname@example.org The Fordham report is on my website. Search ‘Full Message of LaSalette Part I and II. Very long. That’s beside the point however. The point is that perhaps the documentation we want for LaLajas has gone the same route. The modernist vatican hiding supernatural events …even the miracle of Fatima with newspaper accounts and pictures in Portugal is ignored.
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The fact that the colors extend three feet into the rock iis AMAZING in itself without the papers from geologists! I agree that the documentation on paper would be great to find for those who still have questions. I can firmly believe it and back off in AWE at this. It is like Our Lady of Guadalupe and so little known.
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“The fact that the colors extend three feet into the rock iis AMAZING in itself ”
I also find this amazing.
But the same people I passed this onto were more impressed when I passed documented proof of the doctors who examined Padre Pio, the photograph of thousands staring at the sky at Fatima and the extensive scientific examination of the Shroud (as well as a stunning 3D replication/representation).
As Christ said in the parable: “Even if one were raised from the dead, you would not believe” and many are just obstinate in disbelief.
But others, like Thomas, are not so obstinate as to remain in doubt if given some evidence.
I know some who would be much more convinced of the miraculous nature of the image if/when given much less scientific proof than Thomas was allowed!
With such an incredible apparition, one would think that the note books would have been made public and perhaps even photos of the bore samples put on display.
The examination apparently took place some time in the mid twentieth century. So long after Fatima (for which, as already started, there are photographs of the crowd).
I don’t personally need more miracles (or proof of them occurring) to believe. But I think many people do and it would bolster their faith.
Without any documentation which is sure to exist if the investigation was done, most will look on this as just s “pious legend”.
I personally believe it occurred. But I also believe in the Resurrection!
Hello again, Clare. I had a thought about your dear husband. If he viewed Father Calloways conversion video, as I recently did, he would be impressed with the supernatural aspect of the Church.. I have never heard anything like his conversion at the time of the Consecration of the Mass . The way he describes it is incredible. So honest. I believe he has been sent by God . He didn’t like RCIA either … You can find it on You Tube. He is a ‘mans priest’ too …
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Please don’t get me wrong. I believe this is a beautiful gift from Our Lady to mankind.
I just happened to pass it on to someone who made a comment about a lack of documentation. My thoughts on the Vatican likely having records are sadly similar to yours.
Also, I hadn’t read of Fr.Calloway’s visit there but it’s good to read of his impressions/experience.
I only recently came to know of Fr. Calloway and the story of his conversion.
Although he is much younger than I am, I very much relate to his story .
My path back to The Church in which I was raised was similar; as were the constant prayers of my mother, who died several years after I’d regained my Catholic Faith.
During the twelve years she was alive after my return, we attended Mass together quite often.
God’s Mercy is incomprehensible.
So many simply won’t believe in Our Lord.
They would be so much happier if they could come to believe that The One God who created their soul Loves them.
And He wants them to have Peace of mind and heart during this short lifetime. And then eternal happiness after death.
I hope and pray that more will accept The Grace to put their stubborn hearts aside and open then to The Holy Spirit.
Life is so short, even if it sometimes feels otherwise.
The cost of Peace now and then Eternal happiness is simply coming to have sorrow for offending God and others.
Then we can forgive others and find the determination to to try to change our behaviour.
Repentance is itself a gift God offers.
But we need to accept it and continue daily to renew our efforts.
For anyone not familiar with Fr. Don Calloway, here’s a link to his story:
Thank you for the link. I just watched the conversion story which he presented to a Medjughorge group and I was crying my eyes out at the end. He didn’t talk about Medjugorge, other than the book about it which he picked up in his parents library in the conversion story. It ‘rocked’ me. I have kids your age. You all went through the worst times for a kid to be in school (I finally took mine out of school in the early 70s) Some were glad. Some not. It has all worked except for a few which I’m still working and praying on. I’m glad that things worked for you. Very glad! Our faith is simple. I’m glad for you and your Mom that you had the time. Thanks for writing your uplifting words and I hope folks will click on the conversion story. I’ll try to put it on the website tonight.
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Father Calloway seems to have received a similar unshakable Faith in Christ’s Real Presence by virtue of a specific Gift of The Holy Spirit.
For some reason, in spite of all my grave errors and years of aimless wanderings and wasted time, Our Good Christ granted me a similar Grace and I am never in doubt as to His Word and Promise.
Both in regard to His Eucharistic presence and His infinite Mercy towards those who try daily to turn from their selfish pursuits and do God’s Will.
First and foremost, by keeping His commandments and educating or conscience in accord with the ’92 CCC (and/or the Baltimore Catechism).
If and when we fall short, we confess and we try again…and again (seventy times seven, if need be).
Bless God for His Loving-kindness.
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And he has brought back our awesome Catholic gift of the belief in the supernatural. Thanks for your comment. hellenback 7. Father Calloway is a gift from heaven for our times. He has the preaching power to dispel the darkness. Thank God!!
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