Possible miracle through intercession of a former Nazi camp military chaplain

Please use the sharing buttons!  Thanks!

If you don’t pray for miracles, you won’t receive them.

From time to time God intervenes in the natural course of things to change that course, not in a way that is contrary to nature’s laws, but in a way that we cannot explain or understand by natures laws alone.  These interventions can be healings or other amazing works such as prevention of harm in moments of extreme peril to life and limb.

In the case of miraculous healings through the intercession of some Servant of God, or Blessed, there must be a sudden, complete and lasting cure, inexplicable by science alone, and it must be demonstrated that that the intercessor was being invoked, even primarily. Miracles are always investigated first in the place where they occurred, unless there are good reasons to move the cause to another venue.

This comes from the UK’s best Catholic weekly, The Catholic Herald.  I haven’t seen this story elsewhere so far.

Vatican considers healing attributed to death camp ‘archangel in hell’

By Valerie Schmalz [She is a writer for the newspaper of the Archdiocese of San Francisco, whence this story originated. Check HERE. The Book The Last Human Face has a lot more about Fr. Stock.  Kindle version HERE.]


The Vatican is working to authenticate whether the 1997 healing of an American man with incurable cancer came about through the intercession of Fr Franz Stock, a German Army chaplain to Paris prisoners of the Nazis.

Such authentication is needed before the priest’s beatification can be approved.

Fr Stock was “the last human face” hundreds, perhaps thousands, saw before their execution.

He is a symbol of reconciliation in France and Germany, where streets and schools are named for him and national leaders have honoured him. A French postage stamp commemorating Fr Stock was issued in 1998 for the 50th anniversary of his death from pulmonary edema. He died on February 24 1948, aged 43, and his Cause was opened decades later.

In 1997 a 33-year-old San Francisco resident was told by doctors he had incurable gastric cancer and had at most three months to live. Three months later he was declared cancer free. Medical tests continue to show no traces of cancer.

Robert Graffio, canon lawyer for the Archdiocese of San Francisco and notary for the investigation, said: “The doctors were flabbergasted because he was diagnosed with stage-four cancer and they sent him home to get his affairs in order and die.”


“We kept praying the whole time. He had his whole stomach removed. He had lymph nodes that were positive,” said Mary G, who as a nurse cared for her brother-in-law as he recovered instead of dying. “It’s 15 years later and he is still cancer free.”


The wartime French called Fr Stock “archangel in hell” because of his heroic mercy and kindness as chaplain to the inmates of the German armed forces Paris prisons of Fresnes, La Sante and Cherche-Midi and the execution fields of Mont Valerien.

Eyewitnesses recounted Fr Stock risking his life – at times using a specially outfitted cassock and an overcoat with hidden pockets – to bring news and banned luxuries and necessities to the men and women. The chocolate, clothing, paper, pens and letters helped the prisoners resist despair, torture and threats to their families.

During the period 1941-44, the priest recorded accompanying more than 700 people to their executions and said he witnessed thousands being shot by the Nazis. “This week alone, I prepared 72 men for death, assisted them at the final moment and buried them,” Fr Stock wrote in a December 1941 journal entry published by the Benedictine Abbey of St Joseph de Clairval, in Flavigny, France.


There is a LOT more that I cut out for the sake of space.

Be sure to go there and find more.

The site for the cause is HERE.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in Just Too Cool, Modern Martyrs, Non Nobis and Te Deum, Pray For A Miracle, Saints: Stories & Symbols and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. kab63 says:

    Father, are you familiar with US Army chaplain Father Emil Kapaun? Blackfive yesterday, referencing a story at the bbc, talked of his case for sainthood (promoted from his Kansas diocese) and for the Congressional Medal of Honor (promoted by Kansas lawmakers for his service in Korea). His record as a POW is incredibly powerful.

  2. ContraMundum says:

    Wow! Very interesting!

    I doubt the beatification will happen soon, though, due to the nasty headlines this would generate: “Hitler Youth Pope Beatifies WW2 German Army Chaplain.” The media won’t let the truth get in the way of the story they want to tell.

  3. ghp95134 says:

    @ContraMundum: There, I fixed it.

    “Hitler Youth Pope Beatifies WW2 German Army NAZI Chaplain.”


    –Guy Power

  4. irishgirl says:

    kab63: I saw that story about Father Kapaun on the BBC website as well.
    ContraMundum and ghp95134: Yeah, I’m thinking the same thing, too.
    The liberal anti-Catholic press would have a field day with a headline like that.
    Sad, very sad.
    But this miracle IS great news!

  5. digdigby says:

    I have studied John Paul II’s miracle and it simply and plainly does NOT fit the above criteria. I find this one fact rather a serious challenge to my faith.
    The nun’s Parkinson type symptoms disappeared after praying to JPII. ” Neurological specialists say that Parkinson’s disease, per se, is incurable but that patients can sometimes have “Parkinson’s-type symptoms” which disappear.” i.e. medical experts did NOT pronounce the miracle inexplicable.
    “Sainthood Now!!! Sainthood Now!!!” It was the ultimate arrogant infiltration of the ‘democratic’ spirit into the church. I think about it often with great sadness.

  6. The Cobbler says:

    “Archangel in Hell” is a great image and a fitting nickname to someone who risks his life to help people condemned en masse for the crime of being on a tyrant’s enemies list. Definitely cool.

    And, if you think about it, archetypal of what we’re supposed to be as Christians. Earth isn’t Hell — except maybe by degrees where humans abandon themselves to sin — but even if it were we’d be tasked with saving souls. It’s a tall order, but an awesome one.

Comments are closed.